Tyneside technology consultancy Opencast is to work with the government’s Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) to help deliver a step change in the way it handles cases.

Opencast will partner with case progression technology provider Wyser to help Acas reduce its manual intervention and improve the experience for people using the service.

The contract – on the government’s Digital Outcomes & Specialists (DOS5) framework – will determine the most efficient ways to allocate work, reduce manual administration and ensure speedy connections with the best people to progress each case.


WyserOpencast and Wyser’s work, which will at this stage cover alpha then an initial beta phase, includes:

  • Optimising and automating existing Acas processes
  • Identifying the most efficient and effective criteria for case allocation
  • Ensuring the best outcomes from the conciliation period available

Wyser, set up in 2020, focuses on helping law firms and dispute resolution providers with customer onboarding and case triage, through artificial intelligence (AI) and automation technology.

A key objective of the Opencast/Wyser collaboration is to help Acas utilise its data capture and reduce backlogs in the system for processing cases, thus increasing the time available for resolution of employment disputes.

The project will help Acas optimise and automate its case management processes through Wyser’s AI and algorithm solutions, working hand in hand with Opencast’s expertise in user-centred design.

Welcoming the partnership, Opencast chief executive Tom Lawson said: “This new project is excellent news for Opencast and Wyser. We hope it will help people and organisations to settle workplace disputes more efficiently and effectively. We’re delighted to be working with Wyser, specialists in this area, broadening our own capability – as well as helping Acas to improve the vital work it does for citizens and the economy.”

Wyser chief executive Mark Pearce said: “I’m delighted for the team. This is a really big win for us as it validates our strategy as an organisation and our focus on simplifying the complexities of customer case management through the smart application of technology. I’m really pleased that Acas sees the strength in our collaboration with Opencast. I’m excited to be working with them to deliver a fantastic outcome.”

In their joint bid, Opencast/Wyser demonstrated their combined strengths and ability to deliver a successful transformation of Acas processes. Wyser’s experience in helping ombudsmen to improve their triage of enquiries, assessment of cases and the allocation of cases to experts is unique in the market and uses a variety of technologies including artificial intelligence.

Combining this with Opencast’s track record in delivering high-quality digital services for the likes of HMRC, DWP and the NHS, gave Acas confidence that together the partners understood the customer dynamics involved as well as the ability to create the right technology platform.

Tom added: “We can see Wyser’s passion to simplify the complexities of customer case management for organisations like Acas and their customers. That matches our own passion to do the right thing and make a difference.”

Mark added: “We’re delighted to be working with Opencast. They are professionals that deliver transformational digital experiences. Collaborating with Opencast means we have the strength in depth to help big organisation like Acas and other large dispute resolution providers.”


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