Founder member of FECMA

Advancing the credit profession

Wake Up To O2C Automation – A guest blog by HighRadius

An evolving technological ecosystem requires companies to keep up with advancements and make sure that they remain current with the times. The order to cash space has seen immense growth over the last decade, with the introduction of faster and more efficient processing methods being innovated. The latest Hackett study on CFO priorities in 2020 shows that 75% of organizations took steps to optimize working capital practices, and 79% intend to make these changes permanent to bolster cash flow.

The Current State

The spread of the pandemic has not only enhanced but accelerated the shift from manual to digital workflows. The change from offices to work from home made it crucial for companies to get systems in place to help them tackle issues in collecting and processing payments. The Covid-19 Response Poll conducted by Hackett (April 2020) found that almost all finance organizations are powering ahead with digital transformation initiatives. Some are even accelerating them. Even more encouraging, 64% of finance organizations are launching new digital projects.

“Robotics helps analysts save tremendous amounts of time, cross-department collaboration is very streamlined and goes by very quickly.”

  • Kay Rogers, North America Financial Transactions Director, Ferrero

Challenges that companies faced included ensuring long-term and short-term efficiency, effectiveness, and visibility without compromising customer and user experience. Collections as a process became extremely difficult, with companies facing issues such as:

  • clients not being able to honor promise to pays
  • heavy increase in the amount of correspondence
  • collectors shifting to target only critical accounts
  • a steady rise in delayed payments

Making Sense of the Automation Sprawl

“What HighRadius does is it feeds off of our master data. And it goes off with the customers’ DSO, which is stored in your master data in ERP, which hence makes your payments your customers’ individual payment habits. So our cash forecast is not on the due date or guessing or picking”

  • Tony Hiatt, Global Credit Manager, Ivanti

The addition of automation tools like AI & machine learning in the workspace allowed for faster and better-managed operations. Along with the efficiency increase benefit, the solution also helped cut down on operational costs, reduce manual work and create structured work.

In Collections, the use of automation technology helped in –

  • Increasing analyst productivity by introducing prioritized work lists and segmenting customers into aging buckets.
  • Introducing automated correspondence based on whether the customer was high risk or high priority.
  • Providing real-time visibility into analyst performance and customer data for C suite executives.
  • Automated call logging and data recording.

“We started seeing immediate results upon implementation. 100%+ efficiency gain.”

  • Marinko Marijolovic, Director, Corporate Credit Services, Shurtech Brands on the HighRadius Cloud Solution

“Our DDO reduced by 50% from 65 to 33 days and Open Deductions reduced by 58%. We had great success in using the system, and I think it’s only going to get better.”

  • Kay Rogers, North America Financial Transactions Director, Ferrero on the HighRadius Cloud Solution

Automation enables faster workflows through the elimination of mundane activities and helps boost productivity by moving analysts to higher priority tasks.  The use of automation also brings streamlining in two processes like collections by having a centralized data repository to keep track of all the information gathered, which helps maintain visibility throughout the department. A cloud solution is beneficial as it supports transparency and eases acquiring data, which allows faster processing.

“The time that we’ve saved on just the cash application team itself, earlier we had four full-time employees on those 10 business units, now we’re down to just two full-time employees now,”

  • Cindy Scott, Senior Manager A/R & Billing, BlackHawk Network Holdings

comments powered by Disqus