R12 – Advanced Collections – IEX

Back to R12 – Upgrade Overview

This article will however not provide a full overview of IEX but only explain some of the basics to get you started with IEX after moving to R12. Beyond that – dig into the manual.

News

  • Bulk XML Delivery per default in R12.1.2
  • Staged Dunning to be introduced (again) in R12.1.3

11i –> R12 Crash Info

In R12 – Oracle have removed all collections functionality from AR and thereby forced an upgrade to IEX hence this article will cover both existing and new IEX functionality.

First lesson is – it is near impossible to mimic the 11i functionality so there is no easy upgrade path from 11i to R12.

Second lesson is – IEX uses MOAC security so most IEX settings are global and at site level. Transaction security is then handled by MOAC using security profiles.

General Need to Know

A small warning – with R12 the UI is now all over the place:

  • Implementation and super user: Mixed old forms, CRM screens and OAF
  • User: Forms and CRM screens. CRM screens are made with forms but have a different look and feel

So be sure to plan for loads of user training and testing in addition to the implementation effort.

Another warning – setting up Advanced Collections will need a hybrid consultant – as many areas need both SQL and XML knowledge:

  • Scoring Components contains SQL select statements
  • Scoring Engine use views to limit transaction scope
  • Correspondence Template Query is using SQL select statements to create XML tags
  • Correspondence Templates use XML to produce output
  • Most output in Advanced Collections uses XML Publisher
  • Advanced letters may need both XML and XSL-TEXT knowledge

Overview:

The chapters listed below will give you an overview of the configuration and integration points.

  • New Concepts
  • Collectors Management (HR and Sales integration)
  • Collectors Assignment (Territory Management Integration)
  • Collectors Work Queue (Universal Work Queue – UWQ)
  • Collections Window (eBusiness Center)
  • Aging (AR Integration)
  • Activities (Payments,Promise to Pay,Disputes)

New Concepts

First of all the word “delinquency” is new to most 11i users and this means an overdue item.

Advanced Collections introduces many new concepts where the main ones are:

  • Operational Level – item level for collections including delinquency determination and correspondence
  • Scoring – points system calculated by a scoring engine
  • Delinquency Status – status is one of: Current, Pre-delinquent or Delinquent
  • Strategies – Handling of delinquencies based on multiple scoring engines
  • Dunning Plans – Handling of delinquencies using a single scoring engine with associated aging buckets

During first setup you will have to make the following main decisions:

  1. Operational Level which must be one of: customer, account, bill-to or delinquency (overdue transaction)
  2. Collections method which must be either Strategies or Dunning Plans

Operational Level

Level defines the operational data level for collection items which includes:

  • Delinquency determination
  • Work queue items
  • Correspondence

The following operational data level can be chosen:

  • Customer: Party/customer level
  • Account: Account level
  • Bill To: Bill To level
  • Delinquency: Transaction level

So if your level is account the customer could have one account being marked as delinquent and one being non-delinquent. Also correspondence will be made at this level including details of transactions by account.

So if you use delinquency level then if a customer has two concurrent delinquencies this customer will receive two separate dunning letters even if overdue on the same day.

In 11i delinquency management was normally conducted at account level thanks to the Account Details screen in the old collections workbench and staged dunning.

The operational data level is set when you setup IEX using the Collections Questionnaire.

Scoring

Scoring is a new concept of rating a delinquency based on various factors. The scoring is done by the scoring engine which is run from the concurrent program:

IEX: Scoring Engine Harness

The scoring engine use scoring components for generating score amounts.

Typical score components could be:

  • Amount due
  • Days overdue
  • Time as customer
  • Number of delinquent transactions
  • Annual sales amount

Example of a scoring component definition:

image

Each score amount is mapped to a score value as the score amount can vary depending on its source and if it is comparable. If you want to score based on transaction amount and days overdue then those two amount will vary and would not be directly comparable however by mapping them into score values they become comparable.

The score engine values are normally within 0 to 100 and when using multiple scoring components these values will be summarised. The score values can be used with weighting – if enabled – however sum of weights must be 1:

image

For example if you have a score component returning the amount outstanding you would map this to a score value:

From To Score Value
-999999999 100 0
100.01 10000 10
10000.01 999999999 20

So if you a score component yielding amount due 5000 the score value would be 10 which would be added to any other score value.

 

If additional score components are used this would result in score values being added up.

The score component must always return a number within the range –999999999 to 999999999 and use 2 decimals precision – see example from a seeded setup:

image

The score component uses either an SQL select statement or a PL/SQL function.

Using PL/SQL function enables you to use parameters.

The SQL statement is easier to maintain if used with a custom database view.

Segments – which is a database view assigned to the scoring engine – can limit the transactions targeted by the scoring engine:

image

One one segment can be assigned per scoring engine.

The combination of multiple scoring components and multiple scoring engines with different segment assignments gives endless possibilities to meet business requirements.

Delinquency Status

Delinquency Status indicates if there is a delinquency for the current score value.

The status is determined by mapping score values to statuses.

Status is one of:

  • Current
  • Pre-Delinquent
  • Delinquent

One delinquent transactions are scored so the current status will not yield delinquencies.

So using the example above we could do the following mapping of score values:

From To Score Value
0 9.99 Current
10 19.99 Pre-delinquent
20 100 Delinquent

Example from seeded data:

image

Status is updated when a scoring engine run as long as “Used to determine status” check box is set and “concurrent program” is set to:

IEX: Delinquencies Management

Strategies

Strategies works with two scoring engines:

  1. Delinquency determination
  2. Strategy determination

A strategy is similar to a 11i dunning set but with the difference that a strategy is based on score values and the outcome is a work item which can be one of:

  • Manual: phone call or review. This is visible as a task in the collectors work queue
  • Automatic: sending of email, fax or letter. Any sent correspondence is recorded in the transaction history
  • Workflow: automated customised task

The score values is generated by the score engine for strategies defined in similar way as the score engine for delinquency status determination.

The score value is mapped to a strategy:

From To Score Value
1 49.99 Hard Strategy
50 100 Soft Strategy

The strategy will then map to a number of work items:

image

So a typical strategy concurrent run is:

IEX: Scoring Engine Harness – for delinquency determination

(IEX: Delinquencies Management – run as part of delinquency determination)

IEX: Scoring Engine Harness – for strategy determination and work item creation

(IEX: Strategy Management – run as part of delinquency determination)

IEX: Create Dunning And Broken Promise Call Backs – to create UWQ actions

So Strategies are very flexible and versatile however keep in mind a very open ended module is also harder to configure and test.

Dunning Plans

Dunning plans is Oracle’s solution for customers upgrading to 11i without having a license for Advanced Collections.

Dunning plans use only one scoring engine and ties delinquency determination and aging buckets together in one.

Dunning plans has the following limitations (quite a few I would say):

  • Delinquency scoring engine and dunning plan scoring engine is one and same
  • Scoring engine values are used both for delinquency status determination and aging bucket line determination so it can be tricky to obtain desired functionality
  • A transaction can only be scored using one scoring engine – if you add a new scoring engine only new transactions will be scored with this (ouch – this is bad during test)
  • AR Aging Buckets are used for days overdue determination only – unless you customise scoring components
  • Correspondence are assigned to an aging bucket line so every time the aging bucket line are in the score range a letter will be sent – so beware you might want to ensure lines with correspondence only range one day to avoid duplicate letters
  • Only one aging bucket can be used per dunning plan
  • Each mapped Aging Bucket Line must yield correspondence and optionally a call – so you cannot have a call-only line unless you use a dummy letter or similar

So a typical dunning plan concurrent run is:

IEX: Scoring Engine Harness – for delinquency determination

IEX: Send Dunnings for delinquent customers – to send correspondence

IEX: Create Dunning And Broken Promise Call Backs – to create UWQ actions

Collectors Management (HRMS and CRM integration)

In 11i you just needed to have a normal apps user and a collections use – now in R12 it has become a bit more complicated.

So the Collectors setup in AR is still there to do…

Now you also need to do the following:

  • HR: Create HRMS Employee and assignment
  • SYS: Assign the HRMS Employee to your apps user
  • CRM: Create CRM resource by importing the employee into CRM
  • CRM: Assign collections roles and groups to the CRM resource
  • CRM: For Territory Management assign Telesales Agent as well

For migrating from 11i to R12 you can create a resource for each collector defined in AR:

IEX: AR Collectors to Resource Collectors

That should help a little bit…

Also collectors can be generated by Collectors Assignment when running:

IEX: Territory Assignment

Collectors Assignment (Territory Management Integration)

In order to assign collectors you can still do as you did in 11i – using collectors at profile class level – however in R12 you have the additional option of using:

JTY: Territory Manager

This enables you to automatically assign collectors to delinquencies based on rules.

This is actually a sales tool but follow the link and it will explain how to use it for IEX.

To create the assignments run the following concurrent program:

IEX: Territory Assignment

Collectors Work Queue (Universal Work Queue – UWQ)

The UWQ is the collectors work-list which shows delinquencies, calls as tasks to be made and broken promises:

image

The collectors works queue is essentially the Universal Work Queue used by the CRM modules.

Strategy manual work items and dunning plan calls will show up i the collectors work queue as tasks.

The collectors work queue can be customised using EIU% profile options – see a few below:

image

By clicking an item on the work-list the Collections Window opens up…

Collections Window (eBusiness Center)

The collections window is essentially the CRM eBusiness Center.

This window shows the customer with tabs showing details:

image

The following tabs are displayed:

  • Profile – Credit overview and metrics
    image
  • History – Correspondence, adjustments, calls and other interactions
    image
  • Accounts – Accounts and their details
    image
  • Transactions – List of delinquent transactions but can also include current and closed transactions
    image
  • Lifecycle – List of delinquent transactions and their current collection status
    image
  • Strategy – Current assigned strategy and work items pending or completed
    image
  • Aging – Delinquent transactions summarised by aging buckets
    image
  • Notes – Notes can be taken here and can optionally be visible to other collectors
    image
  • Tasks – List of tasks
    image

Aging

A familiar term from 11i however yet so different.

Aging and aging buckets as we know them from 11i are still used for displaying or reporting on aging in the following places:

  • Collections Windows – Aging Tab
  • AR Aging Reports

But then the similarities stop.

For Strategies and Dunning Plans aging buckets are sometimes used in Score Components:

image

And also used in Dunning Plans for correspondence assignment:

image

But in very different way than in 11i.

Activities

In the Collections Window you can do the following activities:

  • Take Payments or promise to pay
  • Make adjustments and credit notes
  • Send correspondence

The following payments can be accepted in IEX:

  • Credit Card
  • Bank Transfer (direct debit)

So no debit card payments.

Also bank transfer requires in most countries a signed agreement at beforehand so  this really narrow it down to credit card payment only.

The credit card payment method must be setup in Payments – IBY.

Activities send confirmation letters automatically:

  • Payment Confirmation
  • Promise Confirmation
  • Dispute Confirmation
  • Adjustment Confirmation
  • Reversal Confirmation
  • Leasing Invoice Confirmation
  • Invoice Copy

All correspondence is created and sent using XML Publisher.

The promise to pay will create an event in the UWQ then you run the following concurrent program:

IEX: Promise Reconciliation