40,000

invoices automatically
processed annually

86%

reduction in invoice
processing times

50%

decrease in
supplier queries

“SoftCo has transformed the authorization time from 3 or 4 weeks down
to 3 or 4 days.”

Sharon Bessell, Argos

Challenge

Argos faced substantial challenges in processing non-merchandise invoices distributed throughout its organization in a timely and efficient manner. Its existing system of distributing paper vendor invoices via internal mail was challenging. The Accounts Payable team of 25 personnel, combined with a larger number of temporary staff, worked in a manual environment. When invoices came into the central office, Accounts Payable staff needed to route the invoices to the right part of the business for approval, which could sometimes take many days, especially if the invoice needed to be sent to a number of people for query or authorization. Argos needed an automated way to deal with over 40,000 invoices per annum.

Solution

SoftCo Accounts Payable Automation was implemented to process supplier invoices in a centralized environment. All invoices are captured and matched against valid purchase orders ensuring supplier compliance. Invoice approval is automated and supplier queries are handled in a timely manner. The solution provides Argos with full visibility over the AP process from capture through to payment. This enables Argos to avail of prompt payment discounts and the AP team to work on value-added activities.

Results

With SoftCo Accounts Payable Automation, Argos has reduced its invoice processing time by 86%, from 3 weeks to 3 days. There has been a reduction in costs with a reduced dependency on hiring temporary staff. Argos achieved a 50% decrease in supplier queries and the AP team has full visibility of all invoices throughout the AP process.

Information

Industry:Retail
Solution:Accounts Payable Automation
Region:UK & Ireland
Employees12,000+
Invoices:40,000+ per annum
ERP System:Lawson

Argos, part of the Sainsbury’s Group, are one of the UK and Ireland’s biggest omnichannel retailers with 29 million store customers and nearly a billion online visitors every year.  Employing in excess of 10,000 employees, Argos recorded sales in their 2019 annual report of $3.1 billion.

“Feedback from all users has been extremely positive and
approvers are saying that they spend less time approving
invoices now and more time engaged in value-added activity.”

Sharon Bessel, Argos

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