Results

5x

increased processing speed

30%

increased productivity

520

intercompany reconciliations automated

Problem

This leading global education company — with a strong focus on digital learning — was expanding into emerging markets. As part of a digital transformation, the company wanted to improve their finance record-to-report processes. Every month, this client performed more than 500 intercompany reconciliations. The company sought process improvement to enhance quality, control and speed of execution. The company also wanted the IBM team to implement a solution that would free up staff time.

Execution

Step One
The IBM and client team determined that the intercompany reconciliations process was a prime candidate for robotic process automation (RPA). They made the compelling case to stakeholders that RPA is more than simple desktop automation — in fact, it serves as a “digital workforce.”

Step Two
IBM analyzed inefficiencies and compared against best-fit processes. The current and recommended processes were mapped in the IBM process mapping tool, then simulated in a business process management (BPM) optimizer tool. The time and motion data at each step of the process was simulated to help identify and validate process improvements.

Step Three
With the BPM optimizer tool estimating a 31 percent productivity gain for the intercompany end-to-end process, IBM built a proof of concept for a single country to showcase potential RPA benefits. Once the proof of concept was agreed to and approved, IBM scaled the RPA solution for all the 520 intercompany reconciliations.

Testing the waters with a proof of concept and then rolling out to 520 intercompany reconciliations

 
 
 
 
 

Solution

The RPA solution based on Blue Prism process automation technology significantly reduced the cost of finance operations by redeploying headcount and increasing throughput. The solution, initially implemented through a proof of concept, was rolled out across all 520 intercompany reconciliations. The solution delivered better control, improved quality and faster processing of the overall reconciliation process.

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