Monday, December 9, 2013

Innovative Billabong implements new hire onboarding solution

The Billabong Group selects Affirm Software (Affirm)’s HR onboarding solution to onboard all of Billabong Australia’s new hires electronically.

Senior HR Consultant Christie Lockyer commented “Affirm’s sophisticated onboarding solution has transformed the way we onboard staff. We’re thrilled to have it in place and working efficiently before the busy Christmas period.

Feedback from the HR team and instore Hiring Managers has been really positive as they can independently process onboarding packs, saving them considerable time and costs, eliminating the need for unnecessary paperwork being mailed out and lost.

We’ve also had great feedback from new hires about how easy the new system is to use, and how modern and professional it is, giving them a good feel for our business before they start, which projects the right image for our brands”.

One of Billabong’s key needs for the solution was to help empower their Store Managers who had previously been caught up in time consuming paperwork in having to prepare and send onboarding packs.

With a large number of Billabong new hires being highly mobile, the onboarding solution had to provide the option for candidates to review their employment contracts, policies/procedures and forms online via a mobile device. New hires can now review and accept everything on the fly quickly, via multiple mobile devices securely.

Bryan Ericson, Affirm’s CEO added: “Clients are increasingly looking for ways to innovate and become an ‘employer of choice’. The onboarding solution implemented by Billabong is ideal for large retailers.
The onboarding solution is very comprehensive and looks innovative, which communicates to Billabong’s new hires that the business cares about their staff and reinforces to them that they are working for an International, reputable and iconic industry leader”.

– ends –

To arrange an interview, or for more information please contact:

Bryan Ericson
Affirm Software
+61 3 9029 2907

About Billabong

Billabong International Limited's core business is the marketing, distribution, wholesaling and retailing of apparel, accessories, eyewear, wetsuits and hardgoods in the boardsports sector under the Billabong, Element, Von Zipper, Honolua Surf Company, Kustom, Palmers Surf, Xcel, Tigerlily, Sector 9 and RVCA brands.

The company has approximately 6,000 staff worldwide and its shares are publicly listed on the Australian Securities Exchange. Billabong International's products are licensed and distributed in more than 100 countries and are available in approximately 11,000 doors worldwide.

Further information can be found at

About Affirm Software Group (‘Affirm’)

Melbourne based Affirm Software Group (‘Affirm’) delivers paperless business process management and interactive forms solutions. Affirm’s software provides transformational solutions for resource intensive business processes. Affirm’s software has been transformational in the area of HR onboarding and for the Insurance, Government and Utilities industries. Affirm’s technology can be applied to any industry where forms processing is an inefficient, timely and costly issue.

Affirm and Brookfield Multiplex won Best Use of Technology at the Annual Australian HR awards.

Further information about Affirm can be found at

Monday, November 18, 2013

Is the sustainability of the insurance sector under threat?

With Heads of major insurance companies voicing their concerns in the media recently, you might be left wondering what is happening in the insurance industry. 

According to the Australian Financial Review, Global re-insurer Reinsurance Group of America reported a loss of $300 million in the Australian life insurance market in the three months ended June 30, 2013. 
As a result it suspended all new group Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) business indefinitely on the basis that the market 'was not stable'. 

Certainly alarming figures and statements.

Other relevant points around causes:
  • Claims are souring largely due to an increase in stress related illness such as mental health and back pain
  • A weaker economy has contributed to high stress and depression
  • The greatest majority of claims are being made by higher income, white collar workers
  • People cancelling their policies has increased 20% a year over the last four years, due to financial stresses and fee increases of up to 10% per year for people over 40 (Source: Australian Financial Review).
Insurance companies are looking for solutions to address this dire situation. 

Solution for the insurance sector = innovative, central communications platform

Not much can be done about the volume of claims being lodged, however there are solutions that can be implemented quickly to reduce the time to process claims.

Additionally, insurers need to identify where claims officers are spending their time to reduce time spent on tedious administration and refocus their efforts on addressing questionable claims, quickly resolving valid claims and freeing up significant reserve capital.

A central communications platform that facilitates communication to all entities relevant to a claim external to the Insurance companies' claim system is one quick way to initiate this turn around quickly. 

Such innovative solutions are already positively addressing similar problems in other industries, such as Human Resources.

Insurance companies should not delay making decisions. New low risk solutions that leverage cloud based technology can be up and running within months.

For a free report that suggests low risk, affordable solutions to these challenges in more detail, contact Affirm on and request Affirm's insurance whitepaper. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Potential (Perfect) storm brewing for insurance companies

Over the past month there has been an increased media coverage surrounding the potential storm brewing in the insurance industry. 

Adding fuel to these stories are huge profit downgrades from the large insurance companies. AMP recently stated that its fourth-quarter earnings could take a hit of up $65 million.

This has been largely due to:
  • Significant rises in income protection and Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) claims as a result of greater acceptability and prevalence of stress and mental illness
  • Growing presence of no win no fee lawyers
  • Policy terminations due to the ageing population and tough economy.
It is uncertain as to what lies ahead, which is concerning many of the big players.

High end advisers are being engaged to find solutions to these significant threats.

So what can be done quickly to minimise the impact of this situation? 

The more progressive insurance companies we are talking with are seeking to address costly inefficiencies associated with the more complex claims processes such as income protection and TPD. 

Through our engagements we are observing:
  • Transformation projects are underway to implement claims systems and other disruptive technologies to evolve 
  • Claims processing need to speed up to cope with demand and address servicing of unnecessary claims
  • Inefficient paper based practices being replaced with solutions to streamline processes, focused on the end customer
  • Termination of policies could be addressed through improving communication and service to the customer.
If you're a progressive company who wants to ride ahead of the storm, feel free to contact us.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Keen to avoid manually processing forms every month?

A large Australian State Government Department urgently needed a solution to manage their casual overtime and travel expense claim forms, used frequently by their 1600 employees.

The Department implemented Revolve eForms

The solution has enabled them to efficiently process hundreds of HR forms electronically each month. 
Employees login to the system via their intranet and the eForms portal provides them with a fully branded interface for a seamless user experience.

Upon creation of a new form, fields are pre-populated with known data. The form is then automatically sent to their Managers’ dashboard for approval. 

Our eForms solution supports customised notifications to employees and managers so that users are kept informed of the progress of an eForm/claim.

Completed forms data is exported and sent onto our clients’ system for further processing. 

Additional benefits from moving to eforms include:

- Improving customer satisfaction
- Eliminating compliance risks
- Going green and reducing a company's carbon footprint; and
- Being innovative

The Department have been extremely happy with the results achieved by moving to eforms and intend to automate additional forms in the near future.

“Easy to use... it’s just what we needed. It’s brilliant!”
- Senior Manager, Large Government Department