How Cpl is implementing automation

How Cpl is implementing automation

David Martins, Senior Manager of Invoice to Cash at Cpl, speaks to us about the company’s implementation of Quadient AR, by YayPay and highlights the benefits its seen as a result.

Can you tell us more about Cpl and its mission?

Cpl is one of Ireland’s largest and longest-standing talent solutions providers, with more than 30 years of industry experience. The company has 46 offices worldwide across Ireland, the UK, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Germany, with expert, sector-specific teams in each.

Trusted by over 10,000 businesses across 18 different sectors, we help clients turn their staffing challenges into business success. From SMEs to leading FinTech companies and global pharmaceutical organisations, we provide bespoke recruitment solutions to some of the world’s most exciting businesses, while matching jobseekers with the right opportunities for their careers.

As a group, we are committed to working with our colleagues, our candidates, our community and our clients in partnering with them to face the future of work with confidence.

What does your day-to-day look like at Cpl?

Day-to-day my job sees me overseeing the entire accounts receivable (AR) process. So, managing that whole journey from the moment a customer is onboarded right through to when that payment is settled. This involves keeping a close eye on all payment schedules, ensuring no deadlines are missed, creating regular reports for use within other areas of the business and ensuring all records are kept up to date. As part of that, I must oversee my team, to ensure we’re managing the customer in the right way and making sure the entire order-to-cash process runs smoothly.

It involves a lot of responsibility, given the whole AR process is critical to the overall success of the business. Especially if you take into account that for every £10 we are owed, £9 of that is usually spent by the time we actually get paid. If our job isn’t done correctly then the financial well-being of the company is at risk. So, it’s critical I perform my job well and make sure all my team are as well.

Why is automating accounts receivable crucial to preventing burnout among staff? 

While AR is a crucial function of the business, the tasks involved can be stressful. First, accounts receivable can involve lots of extremely monotonous tasks including manual data entry and bookkeeping. It’s also a highly pressurised role due to the KPIs and targets that must be met to ensure business success. All this could easily cause employees to become fatigued, disengaged and just burnt out – to the point they simply can’t do any more.

This is why automation is crucial. Not only to boost efficiencies in the overall department, but to help employees by giving them greater confidence they’ll meet targets and remove a lot of manual work in favour of more vital, and interesting, tasks. This helps to boost engagement and prevent burnout.

How has automation helped you personally?

From my perspective, automation has really simplified my job and made my life easier for several reasons. First, we no longer need to rely on my team to carry out manual tasks such as data entry or bookkeeping. Instead, automation has sped up the entire process, with cash collection rising by 3.8% over the pandemic and improved customer engagement.

We’ve also been able to create reports with real-time data and grant access to anyone who needs it, which has saved me lots of frustration. For instance, sales can now check the system to make sure a client is paying on time, before granting them special payment terms such as discounted prices.

It’s also made my team faster and removed a lot of frustrations. For instance, before automation, we used to approach sales to chase up payments for us. Often, we’d ask them to reach out to us on a Thursday, based on information extracted on Monday. That three-day information delay caused real customer frustration, as in that short spell of time they’d often have ended up paying. Now we can instantly get that information, which gives us our time back and ensures we aren’t chasing our customers when we don’t need to.

Can you tell us about Quadient AR, by YayPay, and why you chose to implement its solution?

In a nutshell, Quadient AR is a platform with Machine Learning capabilities that can be used to simplify the collection process, cut down on manual work and reduce any outstanding payments. It aims to take the hard work out of accounts receivable and make the order-to-cash process much more efficient and streamlined.

We chose Quadient AR by YayPay for a variety of reasons. The first was that the system is completely cloud-based meaning one less thing for our IT team to worry about. Instead, all of that hosting complexity is handled by Quadient.

Second, the real-time data aspect and its reporting capabilities were really attractive to us. We can easily pull together the information needed to instantly create reports across Cpl’s three sales pillars and gain valuable business insight.

Another big tick was the fact we were able to use Quadient AR to power a new customer self-service portal. This has enabled us to fully educate our customers about accounts receivable and give them an improved customer experience. Now they’re able to log in, view their payment schedules, request changes and communicate with us in a way that best suits them.

What benefits have you seen from this solution?

The main benefit I’ve seen is the ability to instantly and easily produce reports that cover each of Cpl’s main sales pillars. This data enables us real-time visibility, which improves the company’s financial well-being.

Alongside that is developing the new customer self-service portal. This has not only made our lives easier but drastically improved customer engagement. No longer are we having to call customers to remind them to pay us or chase them based on old information.

And we’ve managed to better support our staff and remove much of the manual work usually associated with managing AR. Instead, all of that is done automatically. This has not only reduced errors but reduced the risk of our employees feeling burnt out.

Reporting is also much faster. We don’t need to trawl manually for the information we need, and instead, our staff can instantly pull together reports based on the latest information.

What advice would you offer executives whose staff are suffering from burnout? 

Look at areas of your business where you have lots of processes requiring manual input. Ask yourself whether any of those could be automated instead. We’ve already seen how in AR; automation has eased the burden felt by my staff. Instead of carrying out monotonous chores such as data entry, automation means they can focus on more engaging, enjoyable tasks, that make them feel more valued. So, my advice would be to take a step back and identify use cases for automation within your business that will make the lives of your employees easier.

What does the future hold for Cpl?

The focus at Cpl is on expanding our footprint with our clients globally and leveraging the scale of our parent company OUTSOURCING Inc, who operates in 38 countries worldwide. OUTSOURCING Inc is a Tokyo-listed talent solutions company that employs over 130,000 employees globally.

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