Specialist accountancy firm, Brookson Group, is expecting over 5,000 hours of time savings by implementing document imaging and data capture solutions from Advanced Business Solutions (Advanced). Brookson Group will be live with Advanced’s solutions by June 2012.
Brookson Group has 170 members of staff and supports 9,000 self-employed professionals throughout the UK, providing them with a range of accountancy services, from credit control and invoicing through to VAT returns and real-time management accounts.
As part of its service, Brookson Group provides customers with access to its customer portal, Connect. All relevant HMRC and Companies House documents together with invoices and expense claims, can be securely accessed as PDF documents via this portal. As Brookson Group staff currently spend an inordinate amount of time scanning these documents, manually extracting relevant data and then uploading them to the portal, it was decided that a more automated process was required.
Lee Kingshott, Information Systems Director from Brookson Group says, “It is taking staff one week each month to manually key information from bank and credit card statements into our enterprise resource planning system. We also would like to make this data available to customers as secure PDFs via Connect.”
Kingshott continues, “When you also consider that 250 hours per month is spent processing HMRC documents, another four hours per week is spent processing VAT documents and ten hours per week is spent processing HMRC payroll information, staff time is being monopolised with administration which provides no real added value to our customers.”
With Advanced’s document imaging and data capture solutions (which use Version One’s technology), Brookson Group will be able to automate the upload of approximately 120,000 documents each year to the portal and automate the capture of key information from the imaged documents using optical character recognition (OCR) technology.
Each document will be scanned in and using OCR, the customer that the document is relevant to will be identified through a range of identifiers such as customer address, company registration number or postcode. The customer record will then be automatically looked up in the ERP system and the imaged document will then be automatically uploaded to the relevant section of the customer portal. For bank and credit card statements, relevant data will also be extracted and then uploaded to the ERP system.
Kingshott says, “The Advanced technology will revolutionise our document handling processes, freeing-up over 5,000 hours of staff time each year. Documents will also be accessible on the customer portal within hours of receipt, considerably improving customer service.”
Staff time that is freed-up thanks to Advanced’s solutions will be used to deliver a more proactive customer service.
Kingshott adds, “As a customer-centric organisation, it is vital that we can provide the very best level of service to our customers. By automating our currently time-consuming document handling processes, we will be able to provide our customers with a more efficient service, enabling us to focus more keenly on what adds true value to our customers.”