Systems Integrator Earns Add-On Sales From Document Imaging Installation
By saving its client $100,000 a year with an invoice processing solution, this systems integrator has earned additional service sales.
Be a hero. Save your clients so much money that they buy more product and services from you. Sound good? Genesis Imaging can serve as an example. The Antioch, IL-based systems integrator is on pace to exceed 25% business growth this year. Genesis specializes in high-end, complicated document imaging solutions, as illustrated in a recent installation for AIT Worldwide Logistics.
AIT Worldwide Logistics, a worldwide logistics and transportation provider based in Itasca, IL, was looking to improve the turnaround time of manual invoice processing while reducing data entry errors and staff. At the time of installation, AIT was experiencing an increasing volume of invoices due to growth, and the company had a total of eight data entry staff processing an average of 18,000 invoices per month.
Genesis Imaging began providing data capture solutions to AIT in 1999. In early 2006, Mark Buckley, general manager of Genesis, was approached and asked to provide a proposal for a forms processing solution that would address the needs of AIT. In fact, AIT had asked numerous VARs and vendors to compete for the job. "It was one of the most thorough evaluations we've ever been through," says Buckley. "AIT compiled sample invoices and tested them with each forms processing product being offered." At the end of the evaluation, only Genesis' solution, which included ReadSoft DOCUMENTS for Invoices, hit every goal.
Despite the success of the evaluation, Buckley initially expected there to be a considerable amount of integration. "The main issue we foresaw was that if AIT scans in a vendor invoice, that invoice has information [e.g. shipping depot numbers] that comes from the vendor's own computer system and doesn't necessarily match the way AIT stores that information," says Buckley. The solution was to insert custom programming code into ReadSoft DOCUMENTS for Invoices. The code performs a lookup on AIT's database to automatically replace the vendor information with AIT's version as each form is processed.
When invoices are captured for the first time, the processing software attempts to recognize data values (e.g. invoice number, date, total tax, shipping), dynamically define each area without human interaction, and build a template automatically. ReadSoft calls this process "optimization."
"AIT has thousands of templates. While some other software takes 10 to 15 minutes per template to optimize, the ReadSoft product took only 30 seconds per vendor invoice," says Buckley. "The custom programming approach we took to simplify the identification and replacement of vendor information made the optimization process proceed quickly." Because of the ReadSoft application's ability to run custom code, the integration went much faster than anticipated. It took Genesis two weeks to complete the optimization.
The success of the project can be quantified by noting that since the installation, AIT has experienced 30% business growth while successfully reducing staff and gaining efficiencies. "A goal was to reduce staff size. AIT has gone from having eight data entry staff to 1.25 FTEs [full-time equivalents]," says Buckley. He adds that reports have shown a 20% reduction in errors and an average savings of approximately $100,000 a year.
Installation Payback Leads To Additional Sales
AIT has realized such a tremendous payback that it is now expanding its use of ReadSoft DOCUMENTS for Invoices into other departments. "While the software product is named DOCUMENTS for Invoices, it actually can be applied in many ways," says Buckley. For instance, Genesis is currently working on migrating AIT's remittance processing department from manual data entry to ReadSoft DOCUMENTS for Invoices. Statement processing is next, to be followed by the perishables department. In addition to expanding its use of the ReadSoft product, AIT has taken some of its saved capital and purchased a SAN (storage area network) solution from Genesis.
Forms processing installations, if done correctly, potentially can provide funding for additional projects with a customer. "This is a true success story of a company using technology to reduce costs and allowing it to self-fund other projects with the saved money," states Buckley. All of this is great news for Genesis Imaging. Not only does it have ongoing work with clients like AIT, it's gaining references from satisfied clients, which should add to its projected growth.