Pobl Group Case Study

Pobl Group is a not-for-profit organisation, managing over 16,000 homes, employs over 900 people and has a turnover of £28 million.


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The Organisation

Pobl is a not for profit group of companies that helps people find a great place to call home. They manage over 16,000 homes, the largest in Wales. They also offer a wide range of care and support services to help people live independently. Every year they invest in their customers homes and develop new, affordable homes, playing a key role in the regeneration of towns and cities across Wales.

As Pobl continued to grow and work with increasing numbers of businesses, people and communities, their need to have the correct systems and workflows in place was paramount. Their on-going drive to streamline back-office tasks, incorporating automation, led them to investigate the possibilities and practicalities of automating and streamlining of their incoming documentation, including invoices.
 
 

“We were becoming more and more frustrated by a lack of control over our paperwork and invoices. We were wasting time searching for the right documents, we weren’t able to process invoices quickly, and collaboration across departments was difficult.”

 

The Challenge

Pobl were using both Invu Document Management (Series6) and Open Housing, but there was no integration between the two systems. With disparate document storage in use throughout the organisation, the need for a centralised repository of documents – available from multiple access points – became imperative.

The driving force behind these requirements was Pobl’s desire for “Everything Everywhere” – the ability to access business documents and information quickly and easily regardless of its origin or nature. In the long term, this would improve the service provided to customers and trading relationships with suppliers.

Pobl’s finance department was receiving 1,500+ invoices every month. All transactions had to be manually entered into the accounts systems and matched to purchase orders. This was not only time consuming and labour intensive, but it was also prone to error.

All paper invoices had to be manually scanned and filed in Invu Series6 but in a separate area to the original purchase order, making the task of cross-referencing the data more difficult than it should have been. This resulted in longer processing times, reducing payment control.
 

“Our new system has improved productivity and saved us money across the business.”

 

Process

After consultation and on-site analysis, the expansion of the existing Invu Series6 document management system was recommended. This would incorporate all areas of the Housing environment including Property Development and Management, Planned and Reactive Repairs, Care Services, Customer Service, Applications, Tenancy Management.

A seamless integration into the Capita OPENHousing system would allow quick and easy retrieval and automated filing of documents. Employees have the ability to scan paper-based documents via networked devices, with data being captured and stored within the system. Back scanning of existing paper-based documents was also undertaken.

The finance department are also using automated workflows to automatically create transactions in the accounts systems and match to purchase orders. Any invoices without a PO are rejected and automatically emailed back to the supplier.

Automated data entry has vastly reduced the amount of time spent processing invoices, automated data-matching eliminates errors, and all transactions are automatically filed in the Document Management system. This means that Pobl’s staff have much more time to deal with the “exceptions”.

Comprehensive on-site training was also provided, and the system is now being used by more than 200 people across the business.
 

“The improvements to our invoice approval processes, and the use of intelligent workflows, has allowed us to pay invoices much more promptly.”

 
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Improved Productivity and Time Savings

Pobl has achieved an ‘Everything Everywhere’ culture throughout the business. The seamless integration of Invu, OPENHousing and their accounting software, means that staff from all departments can now search for and access files quickly, regardless of which system they were working in and which system created the document. This has greatly reduced the time spent in accessing business critical documents, and dramatically increased efficiency. In the finance department, data capture workflows have ended the time consuming manual data entry and greatly reduced errors. Transactions are now processed automatically with little or no human intervention.

All of Pobl’s documents are stored securely, meeting compliance regulations, resulting in improved control and monitoring of business-critical information. With no need to store documents off-site, overheads have been reduced.

With the right systems now in place, Pobl can continue to grow and provide housing, care and support that transforms lives and strengthens Welsh communities, while offering their customers an efficient, high quality service.
 

“With our systems now integrated, it only takes a few seconds to find the documents we need.”

 
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Pobl Group implemented its Invu software with reseller Your DMS. Contact Invu for more details.