Simplifying financial management at Hanover with Capita's OPENFinancials software system.
Hanover wanted to consolidate their financial departments, which were operating over different sites. Using financial modules within Capita's Housing software and new accounting procedures, Hanover has significantly streamlined its financial management, saving both time and money.
"Before the changes we found that our old procedures wasted a lot of employee time. Information was entered into spreadsheets first and then transferred into accounting packages. There was a lot of moving information from one sheet of paper to another and we spent much of the working month just pulling together the monthly reporting pack," says David Hall, a systems accountant at Hanover.
As a result of this situation, senior management staff did not have access to real-time financial information. "It simply was not good enough," comments David. "By pulling the finance teams together we could introduce standard procedures across the organisation which made us more efficient."
"We already used Capita Housing and OPENFinancials but were simply recording information on them. We needed to take advantage of the system's full potential," says David. In addition, the team planned to re-implement Capita's eFinance software to resolve issues with procurement.
The introduction of the new system across Hanover helped centralise the recording of information and, in turn, simplify the organisation's financial management.
"The efficiency of the system coupled with new financial procedures has had a huge impact. The Accounts Payable and Income teams can spend their time on more value adding activities like supplier reconciliation and support of colleagues rather than just concentrating on getting records onto the system," explains David.
Hanover can now see all of its financial information relating to maintenance contractors. This easily allows the organisation to discover if they are getting value for money and whether they can negotiate new contracts, based on the quantity of work requested from individual suppliers. They can also see if annual service charge bills are accurate because they can be compared against the exact expenditure for each building.
New procurement procedures have led to very few problems with invoicing. "Before these procedures were introduced, we took on average 54 days to pay our suppliers, we've managed to get this down to 33. This has been really important, allowing us to build trust with them. And because we have so few unauthorised invoices that don't match purchase orders we have no need to invest in a system to manage them," explains David.
If an unauthorised invoice is received by the Finance Department then a goods received note is created and sent to the relevant budget holder for approval. Therefore, these items are not left unpaid for long periods of time either.
The team at Hanover is looking to progress things further. "One of our next goals is to use the Capita system to scan and record invoices so they appear automatically in our accounts system, saving even more time in manual data entry," comments David.
"Since we have started using Capita's software effectively, our general financial stewardship has improved. Everyone in the business now thinks about finance and how it allows us to do more with what we have," says David.
If you would like to find out more about the benefits and savings Capita Housing and OPENFinancials solutions can deliver your organisation, please contact us.
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