INTEGRIM is the only organization which has the capacity to handle all digital business processing and transformation for any/all documents of the so called “back office” with the correct connections to your financial or enterprise resource planning systems (ERP).
This includes mobile Travel and Expenses (T&E), Automated sales order processing (paper and electronic), Accounts Receivables either in the form a cheque or EFT (electronic funds transfer) which includes bill of lading and internal purchase orders as well as payment controls for the tasks of managing supplier payments via cheques or EFT.
In addition, it provides automation for the human resources documents and contracts, which essentially closes the loop for complete and total business document management process of a company or any kind of organization.
We are having an interview with Mr. Marc Voyer (MV), VP of Business Development for North America. In the first segment, Mr. Voyer shares with us their vision and its differentiating qualities at INTEGRIM. He also exposes us to the steps and major phases of the document process management to achieve optimal administrative business efficiency.
What makes up the foundation of an organization’s business process automation?
MV: Accounts Payables (AP) is often the starting point for the organizations’ document automation initiative. The AP component however does not solely concern the activity of receiving and managing invoices.
It encompasses all of the tasks and functions associated with the department. These include expense accounts, vendor payments and routing approbations in accordance with internal business rules and specific staff roles within the whole process.
Contrary to AR (accounts receivables) with generates incoming cash flow, AP often represents one of the first cost centers where automation quickly impacts the operational component positively.
Many of those roles and tasks structures are of lower value. We can easily observe this with the lengthy manual data entry function. Today’s Optical character recognition (OCR) technologies are able to capture and extract very quickly data of an invoice without any human intervention.
When such a process is accomplished, those resources can be redirected to higher value positions or roles deemed more useful for the business.
The idea is to allow the department to become an Exception Management Center and thereby relieve itself of having to uselessly handle already correctly matching received supplier invoices.
What is the timeline required to deploy such solutions offered by Integrim to organizations?
MV: Standard AP automation processes usually involve approximately 15 days of effort spaced out over several weeks. This time is necessary to configure interfaces and business rules specific to the client’s financial system.
There is also a period needed to train the ‘users’ or ‘super users’ in order to achieve optimal efficiency, adoption and provide staff with the proper user documentation.
There will be instances where larger customers have more specific needs and custom modules that need to be created.
In any event, all potential projects require a discovery analysis/audit activity which consists of a few days to determine the breadth and scope of such an initiative for the successful realization of a document automation project.
This simple yet important exercise will permit to evaluate that any/all possible constraints are identified and provide the client with the best approaches and methods for their unique administrative operational situation.
To that end, INTEGRIM offers these consultative services to deliver a positive ROI centric report prior to commencement and the effort in days to implement the solution. The client will have as a result, a clear picture related to its current state and a desired future state along with measurable benefits.
Once a client has confirmed the selection of a project and supplier, this report will serve as the blueprint for a successful project with the chosen systems and solutions.
Why does INTEGRIM stand out from its competitors?
Firstly, I would say it hinges on the integrated component of our automation solutions.
It thus allows many formats and kinds of documents to navigate correctly throughout the various departments of the organization.
Based on what we saw in different tradeshows in document automation, we seem to be the only firm in North America to offer full and complete set of competencies and expertise related to the wide variety of documents and automation processes (workflows), which involves the most comprehensive array of document formats and users.
INTEGRIM offers a unique standardized environment on a single product /platform on which a business can deploy it over several sections or departments at one time. Its integration can then be implemented at the speed commensurate with the client’s objectives and budgets. INTEGRIM’s solutions therefore become harmonious accelerators for information sharing and mobilizing staff. All documents are then securely saved and backed up in the archival solution matched with each staff members’ roles and responsibilities.
All documents are then securely saved and backed up in the archival solution matched with each staff members’ roles and responsibilities.
The second which distinguishes us is our internal control systems and the traceability features during every approbation action undertaken from the document image during the automation process and actions undertaken by the employee.
Data extraction is performed with highly precise tools which avoids use of supplier based templates via OCR technologies. This is accomplished by complex and effective programming scripts.
It provides the ability to manage documents which originate from an email or the financial system. Next step is to extract and validate the precise data, which matches the client’s information from their system.
Lastly, the image(s) of the document(s) are transmitted to the appropriate person coupled with the preset business rules for the given task.
The indexed data fields thus become links between each document which constitutes the full batch of related documents of that transaction.
It could allow in the case of a Supplier Payment controls task for instance, to reformat the cheque’s or EFT image which was previously produced by the system and thus permit a more reliable and precise approbation process from those images.
As a result, the client is able to view all documents related to a specific payment. In addition, all action and task items performed by everyone either by way of an approval, change or view are saved permanently for future reference.
This ensures full integrity of the process management with the appropriate parties involved.
Finally, we provide full flexibility in the choice of deployment options that the client can choose.
They can be either On Premise or in our Cloud based solution SenSaaS or via a combination/hybrid model (cloud (SenSaaS & On Premise).
Let’s talk about PO (purchase orders) via supplier invoices. Which best practices does INTEGRIM recommend on this subject?
MV: The company must decide if they are capable of issuing PO for the totality of its needs or alternatively they choose to go more on a reactive method.
In the latter case, the client contacts the vendor for the needed supplies and approves the invoice without having previously created a PO. This is obviously not an ideal management process when engaging in purchasing.
We believe at INTEGRIM that the idea of a general PO issuing policy internally, leads to more effective business process management and constitutes one of the best-known practices when it comes to AP departments’ modus operandi.
It facilitates the expense forecasting and a more effective upstream/downstream process management when the invoice arrives. Our automation solution can take charge of the task OR allow the completion of the issued PO which already exists in the client’s system.
How does INTEGRIM’s suite of solutions allow the increased usage of POs in a business?
MV: The Purchase Order is an essential and important document in the acquisition of goods and services. It provides a more efficient management of its cash flows as well as improves procurement approbations.
We usually recommend to our clients that they make use of the preexisting component of PO issuing functions within their system when it comes to buying their primary goods for the purpose of manufacturing if this applies, and to resort to our SenSaaS cloud solution in complement for services and non-recurrent purchases.
Our low cost “per document” payment terms option is a strong complementary solution. It also eliminates the limits of user licenses as SenSaaS has none.
Experience has shown us that it’s more expensive for our clients to acquire new licenses for random purchases with their current systems than to use SenSaaS.
With SenSaaS, we can easily implement a PO solution. The cost is on a per document basis with no limits of users that complements the existing system in place.
INTEGRIM then leverages on existing business and approbation rules of the client at a highly effective cost.
What is the first step when embarking on an Accounts Payable project?
MV: The first recommendation that we make is to « clean » its vendor files. This often is key because a specific supplier may appear to be in more than one occurence and with varying addresses while only ONE address is a valid one.
This often leads to more confusion during the approbation or payment process. Very often these repeated copies of invoices simply have been accumulated over time for a number of reasons.
It is precisely why it’s imperative to modify the files and correct any discrepancies that have built up over time to reflect the correct information of the supplier and its operational realities.
These clean up steps permit an accelerated verification(s) of vendors for smoother more efficient automation processing.
The proper identification of vendors becomes as a result easier and error free. For example, it permits to benefit from the various tax deductions because of its correct attribution to the correct supplier.
We pertinently know from experience that the government is quite difficult and scrupulous on this aspect during audits.
A good vendor file is also helpful to ensure that the invoice of a supplier be assigned to the correct client (bill to).
As you know, the vendor and the client may have several legal entities. To put it plainly, INTEGRIM confirms if the vendor is properly entered, it is valid, can be extracted with the correct information and the matching invoice details.