Electronic invoice capture boosts financial control at UniCredit Bank AG

The installation of one of our scanning solutions enabled the UniCredit Bank AG to centralise a fragmented invoice processing operation, reduce lengthy approval times and gain greater budgetary control.

Background information

The UniCredit Group is one of the world’s top 10 banking groups, operating from 10,000 branches in 22 countries across Europe. As they face increasingly competitive consumer and corporate markets, adopting the most efficient operational processes available has remained a priority.

A number of acquisitions and mergers have supported the growth of UniCredit, but have brought with them legacy systems and several decentralised accounts departments. Fragmented teams meant invoice processing across multiple sites had become a complex process resulting in wasted time, reduced staff morale and tense supplier relations.

Identifying the right objectives

With 10,000 invoices per year and a further 3,000 expense claims being posted to multiple sites, supplier queries were increasingly difficult to resolve. Plus as unapproved invoices move around the business in hard copy, this lack of transparency and availability of electronic information caused invoices to be misfiled, paper to be lost and payments to be delayed.

As a result, UniCredit’s Head of Accounts Payable, Ray Archer, identified three key objectives:

  • To centralise UniCredit’s entire accounts payable operation;
  • To increase control and transparency by capturing all invoice data electronically;
  • To speed up the approval and payment of invoices.

Driving improvements

Whilst looking for a solution to meet the objectives, Ray Archer had identified the potential benefits of an electronic data capture solution.

The UniCredit Bank selected Restore to deliver a centralised invoice document capture solution into their head office accounts payable department. With experience implementing data capture solutions at multinational banks, and with a personal approach to solution design, we were an obvious choice of partner.

Finding the right solution

Simply installing a combination of hardware and software rarely addresses the underlying business objectives. Therefore, after undertaking an audit of UniCredit’s existing processes, we designed an in-house solution to address the banks requirements.

Combining invoice processing software from Basware with high-end scanning and advanced Optical Character Recognition software from Kofax, UniCredit is now able to scan invoices quickly and store accurate data for easy retrieval. This has increased the speed of invoice approval, improved budgetary control, and enhanced customer relationships.

Delivering the results

Since the installation of their invoice capture solution, UniCredit has seen a significant reduction in the turn-around time of invoices. More accurate record keeping has increased visibility and provided a clear audit trail, boosting compliance. And quick and easy retrieval of electronically filed invoices has maximised staff effort throughout the organisation.

Now benefiting from improved budgeting, UniCredit’s accounts department have greater control of their current and pending workloads. With the ability to see all historical activity and pipeline invoices in real-time, tracking and approval time is significantly improved. Whilst quicker query resolution and more timely payment of invoices continue to help the organisation maintain strong supplier relations.

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