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Open ECX helps Bradfords manage their rapid growth by automating their supplier invoices

Introduction

Bradfords Building Supplies is one of the UK’s most valued builders’ merchants, supplying materials to the construction industry for over 250 years. With 42 branches across the South West of England, the builders merchants selected Open ECX’s eInvoicing solution to automate the 3-way matching of its purchase orders, goods received notes (GRNs) and supplier invoices, in order to strengthen and streamline their business operations.

Bradfords challenges

Bradfords long term goal is to be the number one builders’ merchant in the Southwest of England in terms of number of stores. Before requesting Open ECX’s help, Bradfords were manually processing supplier invoices every month, with no set method to pre-screen invoice validity before committing them to its ERP system.

Over the last two years, Bradfords have almost doubled in size which led to an increase of inbound documents. Going from manually processing 120,000 supplier invoices per year to 200,000, they decided there was a need to embrace available technologies to facilitate the rapid growth.

As a bistrack user, it was important to Bradfords that the chosen technology could seamlessly integrate into the existing ERP solution.

The Open ECX solution

Bradfords selected Open ECX’s eInvoicing solution to manage invoices more efficiently and to resolve its purchase ledger issues – including hefty amounts of manual paperwork. The eInvoicing solution processes PDF supplier invoices within the EDI hub, to pre-screen invoices for correct purchase order, value and quantity, and provide automated notifications to supply base.

Furthermore, its unique Business Rules Engine has enabled the company to achieve 3-way matching. This process highlights any discrepancies, allowing companies to manage invoices; for instance, if a supplier has charged an increased price for goods or if they have charged for goods which have not been delivered. Effectively, this system saves time, and ensures healthier financial transparency and relationships between Bradfords and its suppliers.

Benefits

Bradfords chose Open ECX as they understood the Construction industry – a really important factor in their selection process.

Since implementing Open ECX’s eInvoicing, Bradfords staff time has been freed which has been redeployed into other areas of the business. The solution has enabled an enhanced, up-to-date and time-efficient invoice approval system, and improved the audit preperation process with financial discrepancies being monitored and logged upfront through 3-way matching.

The most important benefit to Bradfords is the increase in the percentage of EDI files, which was part of the key criteria when it came to the builder’s merchants selecting a solution.

Watch the Bradfords Building Supplies video here

“We have been working with Open ECX since early 2018. Since onboarding our suppliers onto Open ECX, we have an increased capacity within our purchase ledger function, a higher proportion of correct supplier invoices and an ability to produce supplier scorecards on quantitative data. In the future, we hope to create supplier statements, and look forward to working with Open ECX on this development."

Carl Sturman | Financial Controller

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