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EASY Publishes Special Roadmap To Accounts Payable Automation Success

Bury St Edmunds, UK: September 27, 2018 – EASY SOFTWARE UK, Europe’s foremost supplier of Document Management (DM) solutions, is delighted to announce the availability of a special new whitepaper on achieving best practice in Accounts Payable (AP).

In Streamlining Accounts Payable, practical and cost-effective ways to move off today’s still often manual AP processes with modern technology are laid out, with a series of practical recommendations for Finance, Accounts Payable and P2P (Procure-To-Pay) practitioners to automate and innovate.

Featuring research and insights from The Accounts Payable Association, the association for information management professionals AIIM, and EASY SOFTWARE, Streamling Accounts Payable also features a number of Accounts Payable automation case studies that prove how working in a digital way is the best way of maintaining control, improving efficiency and meeting compliance targets.

“This research offers invaluable best practice insight and usefully summarises current research about DM in Accounts Payable, as well as offering great insight into how to digitise AP process effectively,” promises Howard Frear, Sales and Marketing Director at EASY SOFTWARE UK.

“Going fully Accounts Payable digital can deliver substantial benefits and savings, as we have witnessed in many of our customer implementations.

“And even better, those benefits and savings can be enjoyed by any organisation.”

The full Whitepaper is available here

EASY And TouchstoneFMS Publish In-Depth Guidance On Digital Finance Success

Bury St Edmunds, UK – April 7, 2017 – EASY SOFTWARE UK, Europe’s foremost supplier of document management solutions, is delighted to announce the availability of a special new whitepaper, produced in partnership with financial management solutions provider TouchstoneFMS, on Document Management (DM) best practice in Accounts Payable.

The study, which involves use of real-life DM Accounts Payable case studies, shows how working with financial information in a digital way is the best way of maintaining control, improving efficiency and meeting compliance targets.

Critical success factors include authorised personnel being able to call up any information at any time, any place, as well as invoices being less likely to go astray and supplier queries getting settled at first contact, while approvals and other workflow processes can also be streamlined.

EASY and TouchstoneFMS suggest the ways to achieve that digital success include setting clear goals, maintaining a constant digital Accounts Payable dialogue with the business, starting with a pilot and extensive training.

The report also lays out how important it is to never underestimate the size of the scanning that can be a prerequisite to getting up and running, and setting expectations about the current capacity of optical character recognition (OCR) technology, as well as many other practical suggestions.

“The whitepaper our key partner TouchstoneFMS has produced offers invaluable best practice insight and brilliantly summarises current thinking about DM in Accounts Payable,” comments Sales and Marketing Director at EASY SOFTWARE UK, Howard Frear.

“Getting the implementation right is a critical success factor in any DM in Accounts Payable project, and the ideas and steps discussed, based on numerous TouchstoneFMS client successes, are invaluable for that reason,” he added.

Commenting from TouchstoneFMS, David Singh, Sales and Marketing Director: “Going fully digital with the help of DM in Accounts Payable can deliver substantial benefits and savings, as we have witnessed in many of our customer implementations.

“If you follow the best practice we discuss in the whitepaper, those benefits and savings  can be enjoyed by any organisation.”

The full whitepaper is available from here

ABOUT TOUCHSTONE FMS
TouchstoneFMS provides integrated business software and consultancy services to companies primarily in the UK and also supports international organisations, to help them meet their business objectives through our solution offerings.

TouchstoneFMS combines a deep knowledge of its clients’ business and markets, a broad range of service and software applications and the relevant skills, to help each client find the right solution to meet its business objectives. We solve a number of business issues, in the following areas: Financial Management, Corporate Performance Management, Procurement/Spend Control, Document Management, Time & Billing, Expense Management, Business Process Management and Business Intelligence.

Nigerian Gas Leader Seven Energy Gets Smart About Billing Management, Thanks To EASY

Bury St Edmunds, UK – February 9, 2017 – EASY SOFTWARE UK, Europe’s foremost supplier of document management solutions, is delighted to announce the success of its client Nigerian gas leader Seven Energy in its drive to streamline payment procedures, tax arrangements and contracts via document management (DM) technology.

Founded in 2004, Seven Energy is now the leading fully integrated company of its type in southeast Nigeria, with extensive upstream oil and gas interests in the region. For the first years of its growth, Seven Energy had been using a US-hosted external finance system at its admin base in the UK and Nigeria. However, this had ended up with an unwieldy workflow, as well as being open to human error inputting crucial financial and operational data.

As a result, Seven Energy’s leadership sought to implement a purchase-to-pay system to streamline invoicing, buttressed with a fully integrated and always-available, central document management system to drive further back office efficiencies. EASY won the contract after open competition, due to the strength of its offering and references, say the partners.

The solution EASY implemented has enabled Seven Energy to rapidly streamline its payment procedures, which now all adhere to strict payment terms and carefully set payment dates. In parallel, the new EASY DM system is allowing the organisation to get an overview of its complex tax obligations (due to the international nature of its business). At the same time, thanks to the new DM technology, internal tax specialists can easily pull up invoices and any contract terms from the finance repository.

Seven Energy also uses EASY to store contracts and associated documents in a third party contract management system, while the document management system is also a great benefit in managing travel expenses.

The next phase of the project is to implement the scanning and archiving of all finance journal back-up. This will allow the journal approvers to view the supporting documents directly in the document management system. Deployment is scheduled for the first half of 2017.

All in all, Seven Energy says it’s formed an “excellent working relationship with EASY” thanks to the success of the invoices and contracts deployment. “We have seen tangible benefits in terms of reduced administration overheads and improved efficiency and productivity,” said Richard Ray, Seven Energy Group Systems Manager. “We really are only scratching the surface at Seven Energy with DM and EASY,” he added.

“We are delighted about the success of Seven Energy, who is one of our most important DM engagements in the oil and gas sector,” commented Howard Frear, Sales & Marketing Director at EASY. “This is also testimony – due to the size, complexity, scope, and above all, the multi-country operational aspect of Seven’s achievement – to the power of EASY’s technology.

“EASY Invoice was recently voted ‘Accounts Payable/Invoicing Product of the Year’ in the 2016 DM Awards, partly down to strong use cases like this,” Frear added.

“We look forward to supporting Seven further in its journey, and helping it realise further benefits across all areas of the business.”

Finance Is Doing Technology Right. Why Isn’t The Rest Of The Business, Then?

By Howard Frear, Director of Sales and Marketing, EASY Software UK

Finance is doing things right by EASY SOFTWARE UKBecause of the widespread penetration of powerful technology into our everyday lives, it’s tempting to assume that all aspects of modern life are as well supported by technology as our ability to access the Web.

This is particularly so in the area of Finance – where, after all the years and years we’ve had of using back office systems and IT, you may well be surprised to learn that no less than 95% of the 30 billion invoices processed across Europe were done so in a way that involved manual data entry. Yes, that’s right only 5% of invoices were processed electronically. (These figures are according to Deutsche Bank and Gartner from 2010).

That data is something that the CFO really needs to take notice of… especially when you add in the fact that such manual processing can push up the cost of processing that invoice by a factor of 20. That equates to a bottom line cost of £80,000 for 20,000 invoices at £4 each (done manually) versus the much lower £4,000 if they were done electronically (so at 20p each).

That’s a serious differential in terms of overhead. But that’s actually not really the heart of the problem around invoicing at all, though obviously it is concerning. What is starting to bother a lot of people looking at the use of technology in the Finance function is actually the build up of latency.

Has the business caught up with tech yet?

Think of it like this: industry research has shown that of the 100% of time that an invoice is working its way through the system, 20% of it can be accounted for as transport processing time, 5% actual processing – and an astonishing 75% of the time is basically spent idle.

Idle, that is, in the sense of workflows that are so designed so as to need lots of supervisor or managerial attention to get things done.  This was made pretty plain in a big piece of research that we at EASY Software commissioned in 2013 that looked at the use of modern EDM (electronic document management) in UK businesses. We found that Finance is blazing the trail in usage of EDM, with 52% of respondents in such teams confirming they were going paper-lite compared to just 20% of their colleagues in IT (and 26% in Operations/Manufacturing). The motivation was brilliantly summed up by one Finance Director we interviewed, who said: “Cost reductions and increased efficiencies for purchase ledger when distributing supplier invoices throughout the company.”

Here’s the problem: Finance is getting very expert at using technologies like EDM, EDI (electronic data interchange) and even email to distribute invoices, as well as many organisations taking up the use of Optical Character Recognition (OCR) tech.

But the business isn’t keeping up. There’s just no reason for that 75% statistic. Businesses now have the technology option to deal with invoices much more rapidly than they currently are.

Where is your visibility into your real cash position?

Some organisations, of course, do like to guard their cash flow – and there is often, in SME contexts but also for enterprises, policies to push payment out as far as possible to protect that.

While there is a legitimate business motivation behind that, there are also two issues that position causes you. One, key suppliers and partners may not be as tolerant of delayed or inefficient payment cycles as you may be. And secondly, even if you don’t wish to process a payment ‘soon-as,’ if you don’t have an efficient payment cycle internally, where is your visibility into your exact current cash flow situation? Surely you need clarity here to properly justify keeping hold of an invoice?

The verdict’s clear. Finance teams need to take the next step here and look to use technology to not just better capture and route invoices better, but to make their internal handling a much slicker process. The prize: greater transparency, less need to involve human intervention – and an end to invoices spending three quarters of their time in your company essentially doing nothing.

What is it your FD really wants from you?

What do we really want from our document management projects?  Well, let’s start with some objective data about this. I’d like to draw your attention to some recent work EASY Software carried out in terms of asking decision makers about their priorities.

I think some of the answers – which we gleaned from our 2013 EDM Survey – will surprise you, especially if you work in IT.

If asked which function of the business was most likely to have opted for a paper-free life, you might have said IT. Our sample (all EASY customers) didn’t agree. It turns out Finance is most likely to kick-start investment in Electronic Document Management (52%), followed by the Operations/Manufacturing Department (26%) and IT is last at 20%.

What’s the reason for this? Our customers tell us that finance department staff spend a disproportionate amount of time on low value-adding activities, like photocopying, filing and looking for paperwork. Meanwhile too often activities are carried out manually – and in an inconsistent and disjointed way, with information not integrated and vital data having to be re-keyed, with the inherent risk that brings.

We think that’s why Finance recognises that modern electronic document management can be their ideal ally in the battle against the paper chase. Which brings me to what it is that Finance is there to do for the business, whether carried out electronically or manually: procure to pay and order to cash.

If you’re not familiar with the terms, “order to cash” and “procure to pay” are the two complementary finance processes that are about how cash is arriving and being spent in the business (and having complete visibility is critical for compliance and efficiency reasons). Do you know where your cash is at any one time? Are you in control of that cash at any particular point in terms of suppliers you want to pay? These are the kinds of questions the FD and his team worry about. In terms of order to cash, the simplest way to think about this is that it’s how the business works with a customer from initial interest to securing and recording payment properly.

For too many businesses, these two vital processes, procure to pay and order to cash, are not being done in a way that is consistent with global best practice. Invoices are arriving ad hoc – and with inaccurate information on them. As a result, organisations are struggling to support a regimented, copper-bottomed way of managing these processes.

When you get a request for a payment, you need a process of checking that you have the right data, making sure it matches your business rules in your ERP system, ensuring you have the goods, and making sure you can authorise the payment.

Doing that right is what every business in the world is about. And that’s why we need document management – no matter what the weather or time of year!

To get an easily downloadable version of the 2013 EDM Survey in handy e-book form, go to www.easysoftware.co.uk

 

Look out for EASY at the AIIM Roadshow – June 2013

Bury St Edmunds, UK – May 13th, 2013 – EASY Software UK, Europe’s foremost providers of electronic document management, workflow and archive solutions has today announced that it is once again returning to the AIIM UK Roadshow which takes place during Monday June 17th through to June 20th.

EASY will participate in the Manchester and London events and take the opportunity to showcase its latest solutions EASY Records for HR, EASY Invoice and EASY Contract.

At AIIM Extreme Information 2013 you will discover how the latest innovations in Enterprise Content Management (ECM) can help your organisation to save money, improve services, optimise business processes, get to grips with compliance, ease restructuring and keep up with the leaders in your market.

In just one day in Edinburgh, Manchester, Birmingham or London, our free programme of educational keynotes and seminars will aim to answer key questions such as:

 

Q. Which new ECM techniques are proving most effective?
Q. How are corporate processes being affected by BYOD strategies?
Q. What challenges are arising from the growth of social media?
Q. Where are cloud-based technologies having the greatest impact?
Q. How well is SharePoint being integrated with other systems?
Q. What value can be unlocked through the latest ‘big data’ tools?

Whether you are undertaking your first document scanning and management project or upgrading your existing system to incorporate the latest innovations, this acclaimed event will deliver independent advice, practical guidance and a wealth of expert insights to help you succeed.

Take a look at the AIIM Roadshow and we look forward to seeing you there.

Cable & Wireless Simplifies its Accounts Processing Function from 13 Separate Business Units into One Centralised Shared Services – Underpinned by EASY

Bury St Edmunds, UK – October 22nd, 2012 – EASY SOFTWARE UK, Europe’s foremost supplier of document management solutions, has today highlighted its on-going success at Cable & Wireless.

The telecoms giant has deployed EASY Enterprise to deliver integrated invoice management across its business creating a ‘Central Source of Truth’ while saving time, resolving queries faster and enjoying improved efficiencies and cost savings.

Cable & Wireless Communications’ business in the Caribbean is branded as LIME (Landline, Internet, Mobile & Entertainment). LIME is a leading full service telecoms provider and the largest telecommunications provider by revenue across the markets in which it operates.

Providing  telecom services to the communities of 13 Caribbean islands: Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, Montserrat, St Kitts & Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Turks & Caicos – the company was facing the challenges of localised invoice management. Each island’s business unit was independently handling its invoices and increasingly this was becoming time consuming, error prone and costly.

C&W UK had been using EASY Enterprise for SAP since 2005 to support its SAP finance processes for scanning accounts payable and account receivable documents. During this time the small finance operation in Jamaica was also using the solution to scan its finance documents into the UK EASY Enterprise Solution.

Burchell Campbell, Senior SAP Database Administrator at LIME explains, “We were fast approaching a paper nightmare with 13 business units all handling invoices in their own, local way.  Besides the paper issue, the costs and the inconsistencies across the business, simply getting timely financial information that could be consolidated and reported on was close to impossible!.”

Burchell continues, “We already had good experience and knowledge of EASY Software’s scanning and archive solution which was integrated into our corporate ERP system, SAP. So we knew that if we could replicate this type of functionality across the business units, we could deliver consistency and major efficiencies across the business as a whole.” C&W invested in further EASY Enterprise licences and Burchell and the team embarked on a project to set up a finance shared-service operation in Jamaica to support the 13 business units.

“We began by setting up scanning units so each team could self-serve and scan locally.  We phased the migration one business unit at a time, and undertook the relevant staff training as we went along.  Each invoice is scanned, reference linked with SAP at our Shared Services Centre and then stored in EASY Archive. Its simplicity is its beauty.”

LIME worked closely with the EASY team to roll out the scan stations and provide user training. “The EASY team was very responsive and helpful and made the transition to the new shared services model a very smooth process,” adds Burchell.

Commenting on the benefits that the new Shared Services Centre delivers to the business, Burchell says, “The benefits are really obvious to all of us in the business.  Firstly we have way less paper, so we are not relying on filing and finding paper to answer queries and we therefore are not worried about the vulnerability of paper to fire, flood, loss etc.  The process is much simplified, we can address and resolve queries much faster and the entire operation is smoother as a result.  We now have one central source of truth and immediate visibility across all 13 business units.”

LIME processes over 130,000 invoices and approximately 100,000 purchase orders a year.  Now these documents are scanned and linked to SAP and stored in EASY Archive, eliminating the paper, administrative and process headaches and giving rapid and complete financial visibility.

“We are very happy with EASY. The solutions are quick to set up, very easy to use and adapt and we are delighted with the performance and support. Our next phase includes looking at options to upgrade and migrate the EASY Archive server to the Cloud.”

Virgin Active Keeps its Invoices in Good Shape with EASY Software

Bury St Edmunds, UK – June 23rd, 2011 – EASY SOFTWARE UK, Europe’s foremost supplier of document management solutions has today announced that International Health Club operator, Virgin Active, is keeping its invoice management trim and in good shape thanks to a simple, effective scanning and document management solution from EASY.

Virgin Active Health Clubs and Gyms is one of the most profitable businesses in the Virgin Group empire with over 1 million members and nearly 300 clubs to its name.

True to its reputation for being passionate about exercise and wellness, these same values have been extended to its finance department where a simple, lean and effective solution has been adopted to automate supplier invoice capture and management.

The company had previously invested in procurement management and accounting technology to automate its finance department and was seeking an integrated solution to scan and capture its paper-based supplier invoices.  Kalim Rahaman, Finance Systems Manager at Virgin Active explains, “Our requirement was simple but important to get right as we handle close to 70,000 supplier invoices a year and this was the missing link in our accounts automation.”

Virgin Active settled on EASY Capture™ from EASY Software to capture and scan its invoices which are then queued and presented to the Proactis procurement and workflow system. The purchase ledger clerk simply logs onto the system and matches the invoice with the order completing the integration with the CODA accounts package.  “It’s a very simple, effective use of technology. EASY came in and set it up for us and that was back in 2006 – today the system is just as effective doing exactly what it was designed to do.”

Five years on and Virgin Active continues to process it 5,500+ monthly supplier invoices through the EASY scanning solution integrated into Proactis and Coda.  The solution also allows accounts staff to open transactions in Proactis and refer back to EASY to see the image so invoices are easily retrieved and viewed when needed.

“EASY Enterprise™ Server has helped Virgin Active to consistently manage and maintain its financial systems workflow across many years of growth and business acquisition,” added Tony Cheung, EASY UK’s director of operations. “We are delighted to have played our part in this success story.

Kalim concludes, “The most effective solutions in IT are often the simplest.  This is one such example and we expect it to continue to serve us well for many years to come and for as long as paper continues to come into the business.”

About EASY SOFTWARE UK

EASY SOFTWARE, which was founded in 1990 and is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, is Europe’s foremost provider of integrated document
management technologies with more than 10,500 customers worldwide. Global and
local companies rely on EASY’s comprehensive suite of scaleable document
technologies to automate their businesses, improve productivity and efficiency
and to meet increasing regulatory requirements.

EASY SOFTWARE is a Microsoft Gold Partner and the second largest
provider of SAP archiving solutions worldwide. EASY promotes it extensive suite
of document management solutions both directly and indirectly through a network
of 200+ global sales partners. More than 100 software development companies
have created interfaces to EASY ENTERPRISE™, the company’s flagship solution.

EASY AG is headquartered in Mülheim a.d. Ruhr,with further offices and subsidiaries throughout Germany, Austria, the USA, Singapore and the UK.  More information
on EASY SOFTWARE UKcan be found at http://www.easysoftware.co.uk

EASY’s Seamless Integration into SAP Ticks all the Boxes for Xyratex as it completes UK, USA and Malaysia Roll-Out

-Xyratex benefits from increased efficiency and productivity and the elimination of unnecessary and time consuming layers of communication –

Bury St Edmunds, UK – October 8th , 2009 – EASY SOFTWARE UK, Europe’s foremost supplier of integrated document management, workflow and archive solutions, has today announced that former IBM business Xyratex,  the provider of enterprise-class data storage subsystems and storage process technology, has now successfully rolled out its EASY/SAP accounts payable integration across operations in the UK, USA and Malaysia.

Xyratex embarked on its SAP migration some four years ago when its review of document scanning and archiving solutions lead a path directly to EASY SOFTWARE. As the second largest providers of SAP archiving solutions worldwide, EASY was a natural fit and choice for an ambitious project that aimed to roll out integrated document scanning and archiving to its SAP accounts payable divisions in the UK, USA and Malaysia.

The project started with the UK accounts payable division where supplier invoice management was automated with the paper copy posted to the SAP ERP system, scanned and an image of the invoice attached to the entry in SAP. Barcodes were also added to enable document indexing and further improve the automated integration between the SAP transaction and the invoice image link. Xyratex accounts staff can now retrieve invoices from the EASY archive and see the full transactional information on SAP.

With the UK implementation firmly under its belt and widely accepted, the team set about rolling out the solution to its other locations, first to Sacramento, USA in January this year, closely followed by Malaysia in February. The system is currently handling 10,000 invoices per calendar month, invoices that are scanned, linked, bar-coded and archived.

“End users can now independently self-serve and retrieve invoices,” says Trudi Osborne, Xyratex’s SAP Finance Implementation Manager.  “The previous process had limited access and could involve having to rely on someone else to find the invoice and was both time consuming and a drain on resources.  This self-enablement is saving us time and costs that we can directly attribute to the SAP implementation.”

Howard Frear is EASY’s sales & marketing director and comments, “We are delighted with the successful roll-out of EASY and SAP at Xyratex.  We have a considerable market footprint with our SAP archiving solution and unlike many other IT investments at this time, it is seen as one that can help organisations to genuinely save money and do more with less.  Any ERP migration or upgrade faces the issue of what to do with documents and data that need to be stored for access and archiving.  This is exactly what EASY Archive for SAP does and at a lower cost than many of the alternatives.”

Trudi adds, “The system has definitely helped us to increase efficiency and productivity and to remove unnecessary and time consuming layers of communication.  Like all companies we are working to tighter budgets and each project is scrutinised closely for cost and likely return. This project has allowed us to do more with less, a welcome benefit in a tough economic climate.”

About Xyratex

Xyratex is a leading provider of enterprise-class data storage subsystems and storage process technology. The company designs and manufactures enabling technology that provides OEM and disk drive manufacturer customers with data storage products to support high-performance storage and data communication networks. Xyratex has over 25 years of experience in research and development relating to disk drives, storage systems and high-speed communication protocols.

Founded in 1994 in an MBO from IBM, and with headquarters in the UK, Xyratex has an established global base with R&D and operational facilities in Europe, the United States and South East Asia.  For more information please visit the Xyratex website on www.xyratex.com