Brentwood Borough Council has selected a new finance management system from Advanced Business Solutions (Advanced) as part of a drive to expedite supplier payments and improve control over procurement and budget management. Over 100 employees will use the new system.
The council will implement Advanced’s eFinancials system integrated with budgeting and forecasting (Collaborative Planning), procurement, document management solutions as well as an income management system from Capita. The portfolio will be hosted by Advanced’s managed services division, Advanced 365.
The decision to acquire the solutions as a managed service from Advanced 365 has meant that Brentwood has been able to implement the new functionality quickly and cost-effectively, with full confidence in the high level of security and risk management provided.
Advanced’s Collaborative Planning solution will enable budget-holders to ‘self-serve’, performing their own planning and forecasting with access to real-time updates on spend. This will maximise their ability to keep costs under control.
Nigel Heath, Project Manager at Brentwood Borough Council, says: “This new system will dramatically improve our financial performance. Collaborative Planning will help us to deliver procurement savings as a result of smarter budgeting. We will also gain greater end-to-end visibility and control over the procurement process, from initial tendering to authorisation.”
Brentwood processes 18,000 invoices annually. The document management solution (powered by V1) will enable the council’s four-strong purchase to pay (P2P) team to improve its invoice processing performance, helping to achieve the council’s 20-day for local businesses and 30-day supplier payment targets.
Until now its P2P process has been paper-based and labour intensive, involving the manual circulation of paper invoices for approval and high volumes of phone calls. Implementing the eFinancials finance system and associated solutions will streamline processes, enable greater transparency and provide a stable finance platform for day-to-day transactions.
Finally, the Capita system will support the council’s customers to make payments through multiple channels such as the web or an automated phone system.
Brentwood purchased the solutions through information management specialist Bramble.cc, which is accredited as a prime contractor on a number of Government Procurement Services frameworks. Bramble.cc recommended Advanced’s solutions along with Capita’s income management based on strong customer references.
Advanced Business Solutions and Advanced 365 are both divisions of Advanced Computer Software Group plc, a leading supplier of software and IT services to the health, care and business services sectors.