In the midst of the lockdown, Egger Getränke has implemented a comprehensive digitization project. All incoming invoices are now automated, managed paperlessly and transferred to the ERP system. This allows you to save effort, paper and costs as well as better overview of payment terms. […]
Egger Getränke is an Austrian family business based in Unterradlberg near St. Pölten, which supplies the domestic market, large parts of Europe and some international locations with a wide range of products. Egger employs 230 people and bottles around 400 million beverage units per year. The countless receipts that are generated every day at the company headquarters have so far mostly been processed in paper form. “We therefore wanted to digitize the incoming invoice process and thus save paper and effort,” explains Günter Piller, Project Manager IT & Organization at Egger, the initial situation. Specifically, the aim was to check and approve the incoming invoices via a digital workflow, to post them automatically in the ERP system after approval, to archive the receipts digitally and in an audit-proof manner and thus to get away from paper.
Classic invoice receipt
Previously, the incoming invoices came to the company on paper or by e-mail and were then routed through the departments, processed (for example, the entry of the cost centers) and released. After posting, the receipts ended up in a folder for payment. The process should therefore be digitized and thus accelerated and improved. In search of an implementation partner, Egger’s project management explored the market and shortlisted three providers. “The selection was about a strong connection to our Microsoft Dynamics AX ERP system, but also about technical competence, industry know-how and good references,” says Piller.
Implementation in the middle of lockdown
The decision was finally made by Pronobis, the specialist for document management and insideAx as a specialist for the ERP system Dynamics AX. This overall package, the competence of the service provider and a positive profitability calculation convinced us,“ says Piller. Right at the beginning of the implementation, Corona got in the way. The joint workshops and the regular project coordination were switched to online meetings. This enabled the project to be implemented gradually despite the pandemic. The workflow for the digital invoice receipt is based on a DMS standard software that has been adapted to Egger’s requirements (e.g. company-specific automatic postings) and is linked to the ERP. For security reasons, Egger relies on an on-premises solution with direct data access between the DMS and ERP solution. “Already in the implementation phase, we started training the system so that the document recognition works optimally. This was challenging and time-consuming,“ says the project manager.
Close user involvement
In order to achieve the greatest possible acceptance of the new system, Egger involved several key users from the departments from the beginning of the project to help shape and test the process. IT support was also involved. Due to this broad flow of information, there was little need for training afterwards. “This was important because we were not allowed to conduct extensive personal training due to Corona. We solved this problem by more complex but efficient online training for the departments or departments. We have dealt with and explained the process of incoming invoices, specifically depending on the department,“ Piller reports.
Document recognition, approval workflow and accounting are automated
The digitization project has accelerated the receipt of invoices. More than 97 percent of incoming invoices are now automatically read out and the data is made available in the system for checking and approval. It distinguishes between incoming invoices with order reference and those without. The system also compares the information with the ERP system, while the workflow requests the corresponding approvals from the process managers. There are proxy rules and escalation levels with regard to release value limits. The document then ends up in the ERP system and is already posted there fully automatically. The incoming invoice is also automatically assigned to the order from the ERP as well as the digitally stored delivery notes. “The address, invoice allocation and forwarding are also checked automatically via FinanzOnline. We manually confirm the final check for the form rule check of the incoming documents under the responsibility of the clerk in order to prevent errors,“ says Piller. The incoming invoices are stored in the ERP in an audit-proof manner and can be called up at any time.
More efficiency, less paper and effort
For the company and the approximately 70 users who work with the new DMS, the system brings enormous relief. On the one hand, the daily filing and annual archiving of receipts as well as the associated costs are eliminated. In addition, it enables faster digital information about the entire order process. Depending on the assigned authorization, you immediately have an overview of the respective business case. Processes such as credit notes, bonuses or advertising subsidies are also integrated in the new solution. “We were able to almost halve the processing times of the invoices, because now many manual steps are no longer necessary. In addition, it is now easier to keep track of the discount periods,“ Piller is pleased about the project, which was completed after 11 months despite three lockdowns.
Further digitalization planned
After the successful project, Egger also plans to digitize the outgoing invoices directly from the ERP system as well as all delivery documents (delivery and customs notes, weighing papers, etc.). “The correct and automated tagging to be able to search for documents and find them quickly will be a challenge,” says Piller. Other archiving projects such as contract management are also on the agenda. “Last but not least, the pandemic has shown us how important digitization is. This makes structured working and higher efficiency possible, even in the home office. In our digitization projects, we rely on insideAx and Pronobis as partners with handshake qualities, who always support us competently, quickly and unbureaucratically,“ says Piller.