Pawpear at The Digital Workplace Ireland Conference 2017

 

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The goal of the paper-free workplace has been around for decades, with many people believing it would be achieved by now. But the transition hasn’t been smooth for most organisations. The Digital Workplace Ireland Conference 2017 takes place at the Aviva Stadium on the 10th May and will feature talks and presentations from Europe’s leading experts on how organisations are creating and shaping a digital workplace, one that will dramatically reduce paper usage and improve back end business processes.

Pawpear are delighted to be a sponsor and contributor for this event.

Why Attend?

Setting the vision, strategy and culture of a company requires that you make good decisions at the right time. And with today’s workplace constantly changing and developing, the pace of this change has increased dramatically over the past few years. The rigid and traditional perception of the workplace, with its static locations and times is being revolutionised by a new generation workforce and customer who think and communicate in a radically different way – a digital way. The organisations that will thrive are the ones who will embrace this change and shape their future around the new digital workplace.

Who Should Attend?

Attending this Conference is a must for the main influencers and decision makers in organisations. CEO’s, CFO’s, CIO’s and Heads of IT, HR and Operations set and drive the organisational vision and goals to create and shape a digital workplace, one that will dramatically reduce or even eliminate paper usage and dependency, create business process efficiencies, increase staff productivity and job satisfaction, unlock and leverage valuable data currently trapped or lost within an organisation and deliver it to the right people at the right time to improve organisation performance through performance and analytics.

Keynote & Speakers

The Conference will feature a keynote presentation by Dr. Ulrich Kampffmeyer, an internationally well-known Consultant and Expert, Keynote Speaker and Presenter in the areas of Information Management, Enterprise Content Management (ECM), Business Process Management, Knowledge Management and Change Management.

In his keynote presentation, Dr. Kampffmeyer will cover the journey from Enterprise Content Management to Enterprise Information Management (and beyond) in five key steps. He will present the current state of the market, future trends and the key considerations that organisations must understand before they embark on the digital transformation.

Topics Covered

  • Document Management
  • Enterprise Information & Content Management
  • Intranets, Extranets & Social Collaboration
  • Business Intelligence & Data Analytics
  • Business Process Automation & Workflows
  • Finance & Accounts Payable Automation
  • Data Capture & Extraction

There are only a limited number of spaces available so if you are interested in attending visit www.digitalworkplaceireland.com to secure your space

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Accounts Payable Automation Demonstration Webinar

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When handled manually, the accounts payable function of invoice processing, verification, matching and data entry represents a significant overhead for most businesses. The majority of invoices arrive in paper form, while others arrive via email attachment. The need to process both paper and electronic forms requires manual effort that cannot be scaled, is slow, inefficient, expensive and error prone. That is, unless you have the right tools!

This short webinar will give a practical demonstration of how the 4 levels of a successfully automated accounts payable solution operates (see below). We will give practical demonstrations using multiple invoice types with different formats and information but all will be recognisable to you and your organisation

Date: Wednesday 5th October, 10am for 1 hour

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Level 1 – Invoice Data Extraction

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Automatically extracting header and line item information from paper and electronic invoices eliminates a heavily manual, time consuming and laborious task that is not scalable and error prone.

Level 2 – Exception Handling

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With an automated solution, AP staff only deal with exceptions rather than processing all invoice information. This fundamental change means they are more likely to identify invoice errors and save money for the organisation.

Level 3 – Three Way Matching
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Three-way matching is a standard payment verification technique that ensures everything arrives in the correct quantity and at the right price. Automation ensures that PO, invoice and delivery data matches before approval.

Level 4 – Approvals & Migration
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AP staff normally do not approve invoices so having automatic approval workflows speeds up invoice processing. And once approved, the invoice data is ready to be migrated to your accounts package or ERP without any manual intervention.

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Posted in Uncategorized

The business case for automated invoice processing

Invoice processing represents a significant overhead for most businesses. For every €1 million in annual sales, a company can receive on average 5,000 invoices every year. The financial impact associated with such volumes of invoices is staggering when considering a processing cost of between €12 and €35 per invoice! shutterstock_38503900 Given the significant cost, it’s obvious that processing invoices quickly and accurately is crucial to reduce costs and improve key vendor relationships. The majority of invoices arrive in paper form, while others arrive via email attachment. The need to process both paper and electronic forms typically requires manual effort that is costly and prone to errors. That is, unless you have the right tools!

 Why Automated Invoice Processing?

Automated invoice processing eliminates both the costs and errors of processing invoices in all forms, paper and electronic. Wrong or missing data is automatically flagged through built in exception handling tools. An automated invoice processing solution delivers:

  • Reduced manual labour
  • Elimination of errors and inaccuracies
  • Better exception management
  • Faster invoice processing
  • Invoice approval workflow capability
  • Remote invoice approvals workflow capability for non-office based staff
  • Electronic storage of all invoices (paper or otherwise)
  • Quicker access to invoice information via desktop
  • Dramatic cost savings and increases in efficiency
  • Improved relationships with vendors and suppliers

By implementing an automated document and data capture solution, your company can virtually guarantee a dramatic increase in productivity. The same volume of documents, and more, can be processed with far fewer staff members. The remaining employees can be better utilised in more business-critical tasks, which is another boon for productivity. Backlogs dwindle or disappear entirely. And with the process under control, time off and attrition have little effect on productivity.

How do I know if I need Automated Invoice Processing?

When I meet a potential client that has a problem with invoice processing or paper, I ask 4 simple questions to determine where improvements can be made:

  1. Do they have staff performing manual data entry of paper documents into an ECM, ERP or financial database?
  2. Do they have staff devoted to correcting human error due to the manual entry system?
  3. Do they think they will need additional staff over the next 2 years to handle increased manual processing?
  4. Are they incurring onsite or offsite storage costs?

It sounds expensive!

Of course an investment is required to move to an automated invoice processing system, but it is not as costly as you might think and a return on investment can be calculated quite easily, especially when you consider the direct cost savings of approximately 30%. Additionally, with the increase in efficiency and time savings, existing staff can be repositioned to more productive tasks. In summary, the typical return on investment is 6 months.

Want to see more?

Please contact me if you would like to see a demonstration of an automated accounts payable solution and how it could benefit your organisation.

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Written by Nik Healy

nik      

Consultant and Advisor; Document, Content and Workflow Solutions at Pawpear

If manual processing of invoices is affecting your business please feel free to contact me. You can email me at nik@pawpear.ie or call 01 296 5180. Other recent articles as well as details of solutions we deploy by role, industry or use case are available on our website www.pawpear.ie

Posted in Uncategorized

Maximising the Return from a Growing Business

Growth is a welcome and important part of the business and economic cycle but it is important to caution that it is temporary, and must be managed carefully to maximise the financial benefits while it’s happening.  Recently I spoke to a business owner that told me in the past 18 months, his firm has acquired two smaller businesses and in the process doubled its headcount. While it may be a good problem to have, managing such rapid growth has been extremely difficult.

shutterstock_158506547Investing in additional sales, marketing or production staff can be easily justified on the basis of the additional revenue each will generate, but adding administrative, financial or operational staff is another matter. Often, finance and admin teams are already operating at full capacity so there probably appears to be no alternative but to take on extra staff to relieve their burden and support the growth. Of course being in a position to create employment is always a positive, but it is not a decision that should be taken lightly, especially when you consider the substantial cost of labour coupled with the cyclical nature of growth.

Generally organisations face two strategic choices when managing growth:

  1. Invest in additional headcount and integrate these new resources into existing structures. The main advantage of this option is that it imposes the least organisational change and disruption. However, it requires a huge financial investment in recruitment, possibly larger business premises, IT and equipment. There is also a bedding-in period that has to be financed as it can take 4 – 6 months before new recruits become familiar with their roles and actually become productive. Most importantly, it requires continued and sustained growth to fund this investment or it could potentially reduce bottom line profit. And unfortunately additional headcount decisions also tend to be reversed during downturns resulting in further costs and disruption when downsizing.
  1. Enable existing resources to carry out their roles more efficiently and increase overall productivity. By investing in better systems, repetitive, manual and time wasting tasks can be automated allowing people to focus on the things that make a real difference to the bottom line. This strategy enables organisation to process more information without the need for additional head count. Productivity increases are immediate as you are enabling existing staff to do more of what they already know. And if, after you create these efficiencies you still need additional manpower, you will know that these resources are truly needed. Of course this option requires organisational change but it is this change that drives and maximises the financial returns during good times and minimises contraction during the challenging times.

In my experience, most organisations see the obvious logic and benefits in going with the second strategy but some organisations are reluctant to embark on this route because of the perceived effort, cost and distraction associated with investing in systems – especially at a time when they feel their focus should be exclusively on growth. To me this is a fundamental business mistake that creates waste and leads to greater disruption in the long term. Yes of course implementing new systems can be disruptive, but when managed correctly, systems can be deployed on a phased basis, with minimal interruption and in a very short timeframe. And when you consider the enormous organisational benefits these systems can have on your short, medium and long term returns, I would strongly argue that some managed disruption is well worth it. shutterstock_125145695

For example, earlier this year I was contacted by a Dublin based company that recently invested a significant amount of time and money in new production equipment. This new production equipment would enable the organisation to double its capacity and broaden its product offering into new markets – A positive growth decision and statement of intent. However, in making the decision to invest in the production equipment, the business owners did not fully consider the knock on effects on other parts of their business when productivity is boosted to such an extent. In order to simply pay for the new equipment, it needed to be running at 80% capacity, 24 hours a day. This meant that they had to increase their overall throughput of orders by at least 70%, but because most of their processes were still manual, bottlenecks were forming and pressure building on existing headcount. Their proposed solution was to hire an additional 17 staff to cater for the new demand and process information that could be automated. Their final solution is still being determined but at a very early stage, I was able to demonstrate that by giving them basic tools such as document, workflow and email management systems, they could increase productivity within their existing workforce by:

  • Processing orders faster
  • Eliminating the need for paper
  • Searching and finding correct information easily and every time
  • Standardising how information and documents are created and saved just by what they are, without further need for folders
  • Organising and saving emails to allow everyone to access them
  • Automating business processes and workflows such as order and design approvals, purchase order requisitions and invoice approvals with a complete audit trail every time
  • Accessing all their information on the move
  • Using electronic signatures for both customers order and internal purposes
  • Removing the requirement for manual entry of information

In conclusion, it really does not matter if you are a small company or large one. Any organisation operating in a more controlled manner will have the edge, and implementing a solution that manages company information and processes is a key step for any forward-looking business.

nik

Written by Nik Healy

Consultant and Advisor; Document, Content and Workflow Solutions at Pawpear

If your organisation would like to find out how to improve existing business processes please contact me. You can email me at nik@pawpear.ie or call 01 296 5180. Other recent articles as well as details of solutions we deploy by role, industry or use case are available on our website www.pawpear.ie

 

Posted in Document Management

The death knell of manual invoice processing should now be heard!

Read the latest article by Nik Healy, Consultant and Advisor, Document, Content and Workflow Solutions at Pawpear.

The dream of the paper-free workplace has been around for decades, with many people believing it would be achieved by now. But the transition hasn’t been smooth for most organisations.

Financial departments, the backbone of every business, are still manually processing invoices.

An accounts payable automation study from 2014 (published by the Institute of Financial Operations in the USA), reveals that almost 50% of respondents said that paper invoices account for more than 75% of all of their invoices

It is most likely that the results are similar in Ireland.

And while electronic invoicing is reducing paper volumes, without a fully automated process, it isn’t removing the need to extract the data for approval and payment.

Ironically in an effort to maximise profit, many organisations focus on achieving the lowest cost of sale by negotiating with their suppliers in terms of price, payment terms and rebates.

Why go to the effort to enhance supplier terms, if you are wasting time and money on the paperwork generated as a result of these relationships?

Read more in Nik’s article – The death knell of manual invoice processing should now be heard!

To talk to us about electronic invoicing and how you can reduce manual invoice processing in your organisation: Email nik@pawpear.ie or call Nik on 01 296 5180

Posted in Document Management

The myths about scanning, document management and going paperless

helpIn making the decision to deploy a Document Management System (DMS), the core goals of most businesses are always the same – more efficiency and control, go paperless. Sensible as these goals are, unfortunately many companies chose the wrong strategy to achieve them. For starters, a document management strategy involves much more than just saving or scanning files to a newly created cloud based document filing/storage location. A DMS system must be more than just an alternative file storage solution and be flexible and configurable to your business rather than the DMS’ vendor deploying the solution.

Although functionality and options vary across vendors, a true DMS should offer your organisation the following benefits at a minimum:

  • The ability to easily and quickly save, find and retrieve files
  • Ability to manage all information – not just MS Office files!
  • Sharing and collaboration
  • Email management
  • Built in workflow management
  • File security
  • Version control
  • Flexible permission controls
  • Integration capability with other information systems

cyclingRecently I read an article on the chaos around digitising documents, imploring businesses to bring back a data entry/file clerk-type position to maintain order within digital repositories. To me it’s a fundamentally flawed proposition: bring back or retain a role that most businesses, in an attempt to go paperless, wanted removed to save money and create efficiencies. The reality is that research has shown that only 23% of documents in any organisation are regularly used so the question is why go to all the trouble to convert all of them into an electronic form without the existence of a DMS to manage them? The other major flaw with this “catch all” type strategy is file duplication and the many different versions of the same file taking up valuable storage space. That’s not to mention the uncertainly it causes by not knowing if you are viewing or working on the correct version of a file.

Only last week, the Financial Controller of a mid-sized insurance broker told me he had rented a new office, bought new scanning hardware and hired two new staff on 12 month contracts to manually scan all their hard copy documents and migrate them to a new cloud file storage system. I estimate that this will cost the company about €100,000 which doesn’t take into consideration the huge potential for inaccuracies due to human error or the continued delay in staff being unable to access company files digitally. For a fraction of that investment, this company could and should have invested in a cutting edge DMS, customised to their particular business requirements that offers greater control over all of their company information. They could have even added a data capture and extraction solution to automate the entire paper to digital process and eliminate the need for manual data entry.

rowingOf course some industries must meet regulatory and compliance standards that requires legacy and hard copy documents to be digitised. In this case, we always recommend using an advanced data capture and extraction system to automate this process as much as possible but only when a powerful DMS solution is in place to manage the valuable information that is pulled out. These systems can also be configured to automatically process regularly received paper or digital documents such as invoices, contracts, forms or any other type of document from which data needs to be extracted for processing purposes.

In summary, the solution isn’t a matter of creating another information silo – you’ve got enough of them already! It’s about deploying a DMS, customised to your business requirements that can manage all the information your business needs.

Written by Nik Healy
Consultant and Advisor; Document, Content and Workflow Solutions at Pawpear

(Please email me at nik@pawpear.ie if you would like to learn more about how this, or any of our solutions could benefit your organisation.)

nik

Posted in Document Management

Build your business case for creating order among the content chaos

Download the research paper here.

To get in touch:
Email nik@pawpear.ie or call Nik on 01 2965180

About The Business Case for Enterprise Content Management

As companies strive to create order from the chaos that has resulted from the unprecedented amounts of information they produce, enterprise content management (ECM) has become one of the fastest growing areas of IT.
This paper combines a wide selection of research from industry experts, and is designed to provide organizations with fact-based data points that reinforce the business case for deploying an ECM or document management solution.

Useful facts and figures

  • 20% to 40% – the estimated time employees spend searching for the right documents manually. (Source: Coopers and Lybrand)
  • 6x the value of the original is spent searching for lost documents. And companies that need to redo documents pay 11x more than the original cost of the document. (Source: Coopers & Lybrand)
  • 33% improvements to customer service levels from customer-facing staff thanks to better access to up-to-date customer information. Over half (57%) estimating a 25% improvement or more. (Source: AIIM – Capitalizing on Content)
  • 60% of new ECM users cite content chaos as the trigger for adopting ECM. (Source: AIIM ECM survey)
  • 57% payback in 18 months or less has been posted by ECM users (Source: AIIM – IW: The Paper Free Office) and more than 400% ROI within five years for ECM adoptees.
    (Source: IDC)
  • 41.2% reduction of your disk space could be allocated to unstructured content by using an efficient content management system. (Source: AIIM – Capitalizing on Content)
Posted in ECM

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