Hyperscience is making waves Down Under with our latest partnership with Umlaut, Australia’s leading IT consulting firm that specializes in process improvement products and strategies across the financial services sector.
“We’re delighted to partner with Shane, Scott, and the experts at Umlaut to bring Hyperscience to more financial services firms across Australia,” said Charlie Cote, Area Vice President of Sales – APAC. “This is an exciting milestone for our Australian team that highlights the increased need to help organizations make sense of disparate data sources and information silos. Combining Umlaut’s proven approach and framework with Hyperscience’s innovative automation technology, we’ll enable more firms to convert diverse document formats into actionable data to unlock efficiencies, mitigate risks and fuel business growth.”
We spoke with Shane Reid, Umlaut’s co-founder, about our partnership, what it means for Australian enterprises, and the power of automation to enable better business and customer outcomes. Don’t miss our latest Ask an Expert blog below:
Shane, thank you for taking the time to chat with us. What drew Umlaut to this partnership opportunity?
It’s my pleasure! The Umlaut team has worked in the information automation space for 20 years, so we’ve seen a lot of technology for image processing – and all provided a relatively similar outcome. Australia is a global leader when it comes to digitisation, but there are still a lot of gaps when it comes to certain document and data types. There was no solid, reliable platform with exception-handling, or human-in-the-loop functionality, built-in, until Hyperscience. Your platform blew us away with its out-of-the-box performance. The accuracy for non-structured data with corresponding automation was impressive.
Interestingly, accelerated digitisation will only lead to more problems with disparate datasets existing in businesses; For Umlaut, it’s not just about imaging, but how do we bring multiple datasets together to render a decision? (Without staff requiring PhDs to decipher it.) We believe in the Hyperscience roadmap, so we are backing the platform for APAC.
What does this partnership mean for joint customers, particularly those within the financial services sector?
The Australia financial services sector has never seen as much disruption as it has in the past 4+ years. The Royal Commission, new standards and ongoing regulatory requirements have put a huge strain on advisers and businesses and ultimately increased the cost to serve and advise end clients. Our #1 goal is to reduce administrative burden, increase compliance, deliver accuracy with automation, and revert a firm’s human capital back to being client focused.
We are already talking with existing clients who are excited about the prospect of streamlining client onboarding, claims assessment and compliance tasks with the Hyperscience Platform combined with our expertise in workflow automation and core system integration.
Data needs to be accurate, complete, and actionable to drive better outcomes. How does Umlaut work with clients to unlock their potential through improved data management and automation?
The first program we run with clients is Discovery to assess their level within our Data Maturity Matrix. When some departments run digitisation projects, it often causes data fragmentation within the business. We work through the gap analysis and agree on the foundation – whether that’s simple data warehouses for subject matter experts or integrated data lakes for the larger or more complex clients. If we can automate the data generated in the first instance, control the workflow, and integrate external data sources (such as intelligent capture services), we help remove the risk for compliance and security. In most cases we will provide integrated BI services or normalise the data for existing services, to ensure the business can run with predictive analytics, rather than the traditional reactive reporting structures. The by-product of this is increased compliance, reduced cost to provide services, and a superior digital experience for the end user.
You co-founded Umlaut in 2016. What’s been your most rewarding moment at Umlaut to date? What are you most excited about in the next 12-18 months?
Like any start-up, the reward after 5 years was survival! We stuck to the goals, pivoted when needed, and had some fantastic anchor clients that trusted us with the vision of what we wanted to deliver. The business has grown rapidly, and we have a brilliant team who support our clients and the business.
I’m more excited for the next 12-18 months based on how far digitisation was pushed during the past 12 months. If there was one good thing that came out of the COVID pandemic, it’s the 3–5-year acceleration of digitisation. There is a huge opportunity to close the loop on this and start making sense of the data we are digitising, collecting and reporting on. Hyperscience is going to play a huge part in this – what we refer to internally as a client’s “data journey.”
What advice do you have for organizations looking to kick-start digital transformation? Is people, process or tech most important in the equation, or a combination of all 3?
I’m optimistic we’ll see the silos or single tech installations starting to collaborate better. We know emerging AI, IoT, and related automation technologies need to be implemented in an agile manner, but we also need to have a disciplined approach to quickly digitise multiple areas when possible and combine that existing people and human capital.
The People, Process, Technology (PPT) framework has been around for 50+ years, and it is more relevant now than ever. There are plenty of analogies to use, but I think of the 3-legged table first and foremost. If the 3 legs don’t work in unison, things become uneven; if one rapidly outgrows the other 2, things will wobble.
We firmly believe change management (the people) is the hardest. If you don’t have key stakeholders (the do-ers) sponsoring the technology and new processes within some early (and detailed) discovery, you are going to write some fat cheques downstream to either deal with scope creep, or worse case, roll back.