Solution: AP Automation
Grafton Ireland is a part of Grafton Group plc, a building materials group with a turnover of £2.2 billion and 668 branches in the UK and Ireland, operating in the merchanting, DIY retailing, and manufacturing markets. Grafton chose SoftCo AP to better manage its 200,000 incoming invoices per annum, improve invoice approval times, achieve better visibility and control, and integrate with its existing systems, Unison and Accustar.
Grafton faced challenges managing more than 200,000 invoices for its 35 different locations. With 100 business approvers, invoice resolution times were typically more than 40 days, resulting in slow payment to vendors, a lack of visibility, and delays in the accruals process. The manual nature of capturing and processing paper invoices meant that Grafton had high storage and labor overheads.
Grafton implemented SoftCo AP to manage the growing volume of invoices, speed up approval times and payments to vendors, and began receiving vendor invoices via email. SoftCo AP integrated with the existing ERP systems, Unison and Accustar, and automated the entire AP process, enabling the AP team to gain full visibility and control over all invoices. SoftCo AP eliminates the need for manual capture and processing of invoices, saving time and increasing productivity.
Grafton has achieved straight-through processing of 75% of all invoices and increased the capacity of its AP team by more than 50%. By automating its AP process, Grafton reduced its labor costs despite handling an increasing volume of invoices. Now, more than 100,000 invoices are received electronically by email, and the amount of invoices received by post has fallen by almost 50%. These results have allowed Grafton Ireland to achieve a year one return on investment.
“The approval process that used to take 40 days now takes 10 days and we have complete visibility of month-end over all our invoices in the system.”
Brian Conneely, Grafton Ireland