Ruralco's accounting transformed with intelligent AP Automation

Provided by FUJIFILM Process Automation

New Zealand farming co-operative Ruralco were struggling with time-consuming, manual Accounts Payable processes. The solution? Digital Transformation. More specifically, Esker AP Automation from FUJIFILM Process Automation, NZ’s experts in workflow and business digitisation. 

Esker eliminates pain points most businesses will face in their AP department. Slow and delayed approvals, zero visibility, poor manual reporting all sound familiar? They did for Ruralco until they were digitised by FUJIFILM. Intelligent capture, touchless processing
and electronic workflow capabilities had them ‘cultivating’ success with an ROI of just 1 year.

Check out the full case study and see how, with AP Automation you too can transform your business.

76% reduction in AP staff now utilised elsewhere

Awesome AP Automation with an ROI of just 1 year

100% Integration with Ruralco's ERP for complete automation

Ruralco provides farmers with all their farming needs, including general farm supplies, seed, fertiliser, fuel and energy. With the co-op’s annual revenue around $250 million, time-consuming manual accounts payable processes were only holding them back.

With tens of thousands of invoices processed per month, Ruralco also makes payments every day.

Further complicating the company’s Accounts Payable (AP) environment is that it has different terms of freight with various suppliers, and must manage inventory across a multitude of SKUs, with monthly billings of over $20 million.

25 people were employed to handle the vast scope of their administrative and financial processes and Oliver decided a whole new approach was needed to cope with their antiquated procedures and associated volume of transactions. Long story short, AP Automation was desperately needed.

We had no overview of the cycle; there were paper invoices all over the place – we received 90 percent of them by email and typed them into the ERP system - there were constant issues with inaccurate POs from outdated price lists. When month-end came, it was a constant struggle to get everything closed, with approvers out of the office, papers stacked here and there; to get an idea, we literally needed a forklift to find invoices if we needed them a year after the fact.

Digitalization strategies transform Ruralco using Esker giving them a much needed AP Automation overhaul.

Esker AP Automation Software A Winner

With Esker, explains O’Neill, Ruralco has a full overview of where invoices are at all times, with a dashboard view of how many invoices are being processed per person per day, where they are in the process and how long it is taking an approver to action an invoice. Approvers use the mobile app to view their invoice queue and approve invoices, significantly accelerating processing. Additionally, all the invoices are stored in the cloud for 7 years.

He has praise for FUJIFILM, which handled the implementation and support. “It wasn’t like other IT companies where you get a nasty surprise with the pricing; they were clear and upfront. And in terms of support and a customisation to handle drop shipping, it’s been nothing short of excellent.”

Integration with the company’s ERP system – in this case, Microsoft Dynamics Great Plains – presented little in the way of a challenge. “And we’re the first in New Zealand to integrate with GP. It wasn’t hard.”

From 25 staff members in the finance department, Ruralco is now down to just 6 individuals, ‘two and a half’ of whom are focused on Accounts Payable. All contributing to to an unheard of enterprise solution ROI of just 1 year, not to mention the fact that ‘Fertile Ground’ now exists for further introduction of smart technology.

It’s the tip of the iceberg and there’s a lot more to come. The success of this project means we’re very open to further Technological advancement

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