Case Study - Energy
Energy CompanyThe IT Finance group at a large energy company that operates electricity and natural gas distribution networks serving customers in seven US states and in Canada and the United Kingdom began their quest to manage their IT expenses by outsourcing their billing to an outside service bureau. According to their IT Finance Manager, "It was the usual nightmare. We were paying them an exorbitant amount of money and getting zero savings." Next, IT Finance group opted to develop a homegrown database to help manage their IT invoices and expenses. Unfortunately, the internal database was relatively reactive and provided them with very limited functionality and did not effectively meet their needs for expense management. The IT Finance group needed a dynamic, proactive software solution to effectively meet their cost management needs.
First, they needed to automate importing billing information from their service providers CD billing into a centralized database. Data used for invoice audit and payment were in separate databases and needed to be accessible on one platform. The IT Finance group processes thousands of expense records per month. The accuracy of billing information was a top priority. It was also critical that the IT Finance group be able to generate timely and accurate reports. "We live and die by reports here", said their IT Finance Manager. "We support our internal IT groups and they depend on us to provide them with timely and accurate expense reporting." Senior management required expense information be available on demand to manage the company. Reports had to be easily created and sent to management on a timely basis each month.
In addition the expense management database had to be able to export billing information directly to their PeopleSoft AP software module for payment.
SolutionWhile attending a local telecom seminar, the IT Finance Manager heard about WinBill® from an existing TTI customer. The IT Finance Manager and his group consulted with the TTI Sales and Support team and outlined their needs and expectations for an expense management solution. TTI worked with the IT team to develop and create a customized, centralized software solution for auditing IT services and paying invoices.
By electronically importing their local and long distance voice and data CD billing into WinBill®, the IT group was able to automate the once lengthy process of manually entering billing information allowing them to cut time and personnel resources in half. The electronic import was especially of value with their 800 billing. The energy company received 800 billing that included multiple sub-accounts and had to manually allocate the individual account cost for charge back to the appropriate cost center. WinBill® imports their 800 billing information and allocates specific sub-account billing information to the correct sub-accounts for accurate charge back of these costs to the respective cost center.
The IT Finance Manager loves the Alerts functionality in WinBill®. Alerts provide him with timely notification that certain actions need to be taken relative to their bills. "We are now able to be alerted to billing errors and have eliminated the problem of misallocated payment of bills."
The IT Finance Manager has developed a Value Contribution Table and has realized over $400,000 in savings to the company since he implemented WinBill®.
Reports created in WinBill® have been customized to meet the specific reporting requirements of management by department and cost center. All of the reports can be automatically scheduled to go out on a monthly, weekly or periodic basis and can be exported to email in about 20 different formats. The reports generated in WinBill® can also be sent to a printer or to a fax automating the once time consuming reporting task.
SummaryTo best summarize their experience with WinBill® is to describe a fully meshed, automated proactive billing management solution that meets their needs. The IT Finance group is able to effectively keep an accurate inventory of all of their voice, data and cellular services and pay these expenses all from a centralized database.
The ROI on the investment in WinBill® has been phenomenal. Not only has WinBill® saved the company hundreds of thousands of dollars but also it has allowed IT Finance to cut their time and personnel resources in half. No need for double data entry because billing information is exported into their AP software for simplified payment of expenses. The company's management receives timely and accurate information about the company's expenses. The positive, on going results of WinBill® have provided the IT Finance group with an effective tool to benchmark and evaluate their performance.