Making the most of AP Automation

One of Australia’s leading diversified food and agribusiness companies, the Craig Mostyn Group has moved ahead with Esker Accounts Payable solution on Premises with its mobile application for business approvers.

Operating state-of-the art processing facilities throughout Australia, Craig Mostyn Group turned over 350 million dollars in 2014 and supplies customers both domestically and internationally with fresh pork, seafood, protein meal, and tallow and fruit products.

With different business divisions in different industries scattered across Australia, after reviewing many of its internal processes, the company thought that several processes could be further optimised to increase efficiency.

Long-term, the company is looking at streamlining all its processes to set itself up for significant growth and future acquisitions.

For Group Financial Controller Scott Seville, the Accounts Payable process was the starting point.

“We felt our current processes were effective, but there was a space to get some efficiency gains. What cropped up was that all our invoice processing was done at the various sites, and then invoices were sent to our centralised shared service team here in Fremantle, Western Australia. The fact that one invoice gets handled by numerous people before it makes its way to head office for payment just didn’t make sense anymore.”

After reviewing several solutions, Craig Mostyn Group selected the Esker Accounts Payable solution on Premises with its mobile application for business approvers.

“The small investment required to get this in place seemed like a no-brainer.” The pilot at head office provided the evidence that new technology can drive cultural change in the company. 

“Everyone could see the solution working. No more paper getting manually handled through the business, a completely digitalised process… the benefits flowed from there.”

Since then, and over the past 9 months, the Esker Accounts Payable solution has been rolled out to every business in the Craig Mostyn Group.

The Esker Accounts Payable (AP) automation solution is integrated with the company’s ERP system called Adept. It eliminates the need to manually process paper based documents by digitalising the invoice approval workflow and by automating the posting of the invoice key data into Adept. Additionally, the solution also includes digital archiving so that AP officers can easily retrieve invoice images with a couple of clicks.

How It Works

“The reason we chose Esker was first and foremost usability for everyone. It’s so much easier to use.” The other important factor singled out by the team is “the fact that the Esker software solution was an all-in-one solution (as opposed to other solutions which are made of several software products).”

Clearly the Esker AP automation solution includes all the required functionality and capability in one fully integrated solution with the OCR engineworkflow engine, archive, mobile application for approvers.

While efficiency and cost-savings were direct benefits of the implementation of the Esker AP automation solution, Scott Seville singles out the cultural shift that is helping propel the group forward in its growth and acquisitions phase.

“The time savings have exceeded our expectations, we calculated around 4 minutes per invoice potentially and that’s only in head office. We have cut costs, operating costs, paper costs, printing costs, postage costs, and storage costs. But we really wanted to make it a cultural change project. We positioned it internally as a shift in people’s time from non-value added to value-added activities, that way everyone could get behind it and support it.”

The Craig Mostyn Group team speaks highly of the project delivered by Esker Australia.

“I thought the Esker team and the project delivery were excellent, thoroughly professional. That really gave us a lot of confidence that we made the right call.”

Craig Mostyn Group is now looking at implementing the same cultural shift and lift in efficiency to other processes in the business.

“When people use technology correctly, and they see it working, they start to question other parts of the business, and they start reviewing other processes” says Scott Seville.

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