Automating Excels with Blackout Cuts 235 Days from Review


The Challenge and Solution


A service provider with Blackout worked with a client facing a review for a challenging case containing mostly Protected Health Information (PHI) in large Excels and PDFs. Cumbersome files impede a reviewer’s ability to manage them effectively – whether it is by crashing an application or a lagging user experience. At a minimum, this adds many hours of quality checking time to a review. At most, it risks the exposure of sensitive information in the final produced and shared documents.


The document set in this case included Excel files with over 65,000 lines of dense personal medical information. It also included over 100 PDF files, each 800+ pages of PHI as well as an even larger subset of PDFs with 5-25,000 pages of PHI each.


Manual redactions in a sluggish tool was not an option, so the provider reached out to Milyli to plan an automated Blackout workflow for the matter. Milyli’s Customer Advocates helped ensure the ruleset built by the service provider’s review team would accurately flag the client’s requirements for PII and PHI in the case. The service provider then loaded the various files into Blackout and ran the appropriate document type projects with those rulesets applied – reporting the hours below saved.




Time Saved with Blackout


  • 120 Hours of Review Time Across 5 Major Excel Spreadsheets

  • 500 Hours of Reviewer Time on Smaller PDF Documents

  • 361 Reviewer Hours on Large PDF Documents

  • 903 Reviewer Hours on Larger PDF Documents

1884 / 8 = 235.5 Business Days



Success Factors

  • Automate enormous, unwieldy files that crash manual tools


  • Simplify QC and analysis with au