The challenge: Achieve substantial savings and improve productivity
The client is the largest online real estate auction company in the US, supporting 6.3M buyers and 10,000 auctions per year representing $52B in sales to date.
The client sought an agile technology and services provider that could step in and take over non-core support functions in its business — to save costs, reduce cycle times, improve employee productivity and allow management to focus on high-value growth opportunities.
We were selected to assume control of facility leases and expenses, infrastructure improvements and maintenance, and recruiting, onboarding, and managing employees. The client wanted us to create turnkey production facilities and staff them with skilled employees.
Further, the cost reduction/turn-time improvement objectives had to be met in the aggressive timelines set by the client.
The solution: Offshore and onshore hybrid model
We created off-shore centers to support four key functions with recruitment and training in real estate closing and transfer. In addition, we established a new, modern onshore operations center in Morrisville, NC staffed with 70 domain knowledge experts.
The transition occurred early in the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to achieving the required cost and processing time savings, we had to transition all employees to work-from-home status to minimize the potential for disruption.
At several points during the modernization project, the client asked Firstsource to address workflow and automation opportunities in six additional areas, including settlement and closing, auditing, quality control and support for the webchat function, which we executed.
The result: Modernizing operations swiftly while reducing costs and improving cycle time
The modernization project was completed within the six-month time frame. Through combined efforts to apply new technology and leverage offshore resources, Firstsource was able to deliver $14 million in annualized cost savings.
By deploying automation to streamline workflows, we improved cycle time in all functional areas, achieving hours-long turn-time reductions that, in some cases, reached 70%. We transitioned 100% of staff to WFH within one week of the pandemic onset, with an 8% improvement in employee productivity.
The demand from investors who want to add to real estate holdings augurs well for the client, which now enjoys additional capacity, greater marginal profitability on new revenue, and improved effectiveness in risk management and client-facing support functions.