Newsec is the largest property management company in Northern Europe. The company is a full-service property house, catering to the needs of investors and owners as well as commercial and residential tenants. The company’s services include providing guidance in property purchases and sales, assessments, and analyses as well as property management.
Newsec employs over 500 real estate professionals in Finland, with offices in 12 cities. Newsec was founded in Sweden in 1994. In Finland, Newsec’s history began in 1989 as Tallberg Toimitilajohto Oy, which Newsec bought in 2005. The company currently operates in seven different markets and employs over 1,800 people.
Robotic Process Automation to improve employee satisfaction
Development Manager Lauri Pulkka describes why Newsec decided to start the Robotic Process Automation (RPA) project.
“Growth, system overhauls and the competitive situation are important reasons for increasing efficiency. Newsec wishes to be a pioneer in the business, and robotics fit into this image well. The main reason for starting the RPA project, however, was employee satisfaction. We wanted to free up specialists time from routine work so that they could work in more significant tasks.”
A suitably ambitious process was chosen to be the first since we wanted to emphasize the benefits of RPA. A robot named “Ruttunen” takes care of billings for sauna turns and parking space reservations by copying the information from an electronic maintenance log into the billing system. There are approximately 10,000 reservations to be billed per year, which can be completed by an experienced employee in three minutes at best. The RPA project was launched in November 2018 and completed in January 2019. Minor changes have been made during the spring to ensure that the robot’s work was as broad as possible.
The new robot colleague was met with rounds of applause
“We chose Staria as our RPA partner based on their references and range of services. We also wanted to own the robots and to develop our RPA expertise internally. With Staria, this was all possible. We selected UiPath as our technology because it was the best performer in almost all reviews. The outcome was very encouraging, and the technology was much better than I anticipated. As we did not have any prior RPA experience, it was good that we could start our small and pilot the technology before committing ourselves to it”, Pulkka explains.
“Nobody enjoyed working with the enormous amount of reservations, and so the first robot was met with rounds of applause”, Pulkka states with satisfaction.
Pulkka warmly recommends people to try out RPA. Robotics teaches us a great deal about new processes because people are not always aware of the exceptions that come up while working with robots. “The technology was better, but the company’s processes were more complex than we imagined”, Pulkka laughs.
UiPath provides a wide variety of free RPA materials and training opportunities. Before starting a robotics project, it is a good idea to reserve enough time for learning and to improve employee commitment. Companies should also be prepared for changes that affect the robot’s work.
New RPA projects in the future as well
The co-operation has organically grown from the first pilot to a partner agreement which includes Nordic co-operation and considerations whether similar processes will be implemented in other countries.
For 2020 the plans are much bigger and Newsec is continuing the collaboration with Staria. Partnership agreement ensures that Newsec can enjoy the full benefits of Staria RPA expertise and consultation services, including RPA developer and RPA project lead training, along with business consultation for the management team.
“New robotics projects are already being planned. The goal is for the next set of robots to free up even more of real estate specialists’ time to work on tasks that are more suitable for their expertise. What is really impressive about Staria is how easily they can communicate with our process owners, who are experts in real estate but not necessarily digitalization or robotic process automation”, Pulkka states with enthusiasm.
Pulkka praises the partnership with Staria: “The partnership has been very successful. I especially appreciate the level of honesty on both sides. The benefits of RPA have become obvious to us. People are happy to be able to let go of these manual tasks and give them to the virtual assistants. We have been very satisfied with our collaboration.”