Fujitsu Australia and New Zealand, the third largest information and communications technology company in Australia and New Zealand, achieves greater efficiency and a paperless Accounts Payable (AP) process by implementing ReadSoft’s AP automation solution for SAP ERPs.
Established in 1973, Fujitsu Australia is known for its strategic consulting as well as its application and infrastructure solutions and services. Fujitsu Australia Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fujitsu Limited.
Printers & Multifunction Devices
The operation was initially called FACOM Australia Limited (FAL). The change to Fujitsu Australia came in 1985
Fujitsu in Australia came of age when it was awarded the Australian Bureau of Statistics contract in 1979
Procurement leadership embarked on a process improvement plan with the aim of creating a faster, more efficient invoice process. Fujitsu’s existing invoice model involved manually keying in data and circulating paper invoices around for coding and approval. In addition slow and late payments, the low visibility of the AP process left Fujitsu struggling to measure staff performance and adequately forecast cash flow.
Mark Horton Taxed Treasury Manager Fujitsu Australia
We needed better visibility of exactly how much cash we had to spend each month.
The company was determined to gain transparency and control of their invoice process, and sought out an AP automation solution that would transform the AP process.
Fujitsu sought a SAP certified in-house automation solution that sat seamlessly within their SAP ERP system. The goal was to deliver payment within 14 days of invoice receipt, enabling Fujitsu to be eligible for early-pay discounts.
Fujitsu concluded the ReadSoft solution was “the perfect match” because it looked like and worked like an extension of SAP. AP Manager Varun Kalia says the familiar look and feel minimises staff user training, assists with change management and ensures staff are comfortable enough to use the new system as quick as possible.
ReadSoft’s solution enables Fujitsu to investigate how many invoices are being processed each day/month/year. With the ability to trace all history, track log files and view who put the information in, Fujitsu now has much more control over their invoice process. This improved trans¬parency has made it possible to measure staff perfor¬mance and tailor staff development to individual needs.
“AP staff have much more pride in what they do and we now have stability in our staffing.” Kalia says.
Mark Horton Tax and Treasury Director Fujitsu Australia
I have a much better pipeline and it has helped me with my cash plan¬ning. The increase in control of our spending has helped enormously with forecasting and dealing with foreign currency.
Fujitsu has worked hard with vendors to eradicate paper-based invoicing, educating vendors on email invoicing—Fujitsu’s preferred method. The organization now processes 85% of all incoming invoices via email. In addition to limiting paper consumption and paper waste, Fujitsu has also reduced the need for scanning in paper invoices to just once per week.
Now that paper invoices are no longer sitting on peoples desks, Fujitsu can adequately forecast their monthly expenditures.
Fujitsu Australia has recorded significant savings through its automation of invoice processing. Invoices are processed into SAP and searching begins for a three-way match. If it has a PO, the system will look for goods receiving and if that matches, it will be ready to be paid. The company now processes 30 to 50% of invoices without human interaction.
Finally, the move to automation has improved vendor relationships. Suppliers now trust they will be paid on time, and the Fujitsu team doesn’t need to spend as much time chasing payments.
“It is much more pleasant for employees and external parties alike,” Kalia says.
Because Fujitsu has good master data in SAP, good invoice definitions and has optimised their invoice templates, 60-70% of the workload is automatically processed in Invoices without human verification.
Fujitsu has not enabled “auto reject” because they use errors to educate vendors. For example, if there are three PDF attachments in one email, l it will be rejected. AP Manager Varun Kalia says Fujitsu calls the vendor and explains how invoices need to be submitted.
Varun Kalia AP Manager Fujitsu Australia
We have increased our efficiency by 30% and profited from maximizing the productivity of our staff. Our AP staff are now able to grow and develop, increasing their value to the organization.
In 2014, Lexmark International, a global technology leader, acquired ReadSoft, a leading provider of applications for automating business processes. Together, they become an unmatched solution for financial process automation. Lexmark enterprise software, hardware and services remove the inefficiencies of information silos and disconnected processes, connecting people to the information they need at the moment they need it. This case study reflects ReadSoft products and positioning at the time of acquisition and has been approved for use.