• Professional services

The problem

A business advisory organisation with eight business advisors and an administrator/back office coordinator is struggling to keep the information up to date.
The client project information is stored on individual laptops, and various draft copies are sent via email to collaborators. More than once, the wrong document is updated.
At the end of the week, the invoicing process consists of a round of calls by the admininstrator/back office coordinator, who obtains from each advisor the hours spent at each project, which are gathered on a spreadsheet to be provided the external accountant for invoicing.
Due to the disconnected nature of the work, there is little or no collaborative learning among the advisors. When an advisor is on leave, or permanently replaced on a project, it takes a week of potential billable time out of the schedule to do a proper hand-over.

Our solution

  • A consolidated and collaborative client collaboration portal, with all tasks and related documents stored in the cloud, accessible via laptop, mobile, or tablet
  • A central time-sheet application linked to the project tasks
  • Project expenses linked from receipt to project
  • All invoice transactions for time and expense linked to the project for weekly invoicing
  • Team collaboration and knowledge sharing across projects and the organisation
  • Single point of view on all client engagements - sales, project status, and accounting
  • Business change is built into the plan, the applications evolve with the business

Your benefits

  • Project status and handover simplified by common view of projects, with shared documents and social media like interactions
  • Direct insight into budget performance and team utilisation
  • All expenses and disbursements appropriately charged to the project and billed to the client, saving hours of cost allocation per week
  • Accurate invoicing a matter of minutes, instead of hours, per project
  • Continuity of service for all clients with a client document repository and interactive feeds
  • With the digital business plan, maintenance and enhancements are included, changes can be made to the software as part of the plan at any time

The verdict

This scenario reflects a knowledge based business where the team members work from separate locations. Since they rarely share an office, collaboration and communication were there first elements to tackle. This allowed the team to collaborate on projects, documents and general tasks in a "social media" like manner - posts and feeds. The organisation changed from a weekly time sheet treasure-hunt to a daily task-based registration. This, combined with the expense management tool, allowed for daily insights into the project performance versus budget, as well as simplifying the invoicing process. This in turn improved considerably in accuracy, reducing the invoice disputes and associated write-offs, and improving the cash-flow position by managing Days Sales Outstanding to close to the payment term of 14 days.

Digital Business

The digital business plan, with the following integrated applications for 9 employees:

  • Project management
  • Social Intranet
  • CRM
  • Expense management
  • Invoicing
  • Secure cloud storage and document sharing
  • Email campaign marketing