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Howarth Timber improve accuracy & efficiency with eInvoicing

The Howarth Timber Group has significantly streamlined the way it processes and validates supplier invoices through the implementation of an automated eInvoicing system.

Howarth Timber, operating a network of 30 timber and builders’ merchant branches across the country, made the investment to increase invoice processing efficiency and streamline supplier payments. Open ECX, the fastest growing electronic trading community in the construction supply chain, provided Howarth Timber with their ‘easy e-invoice solution’; an e-invoicing system that automatically converts and validates PDF invoices received from suppliers into XML files, integrating seamlessly with the business’ back office system, in Howarth Timber’s case, the Kerridge K8 system .

Paul Cornford, ‎Group Information Systems Manager at Howarth Timber, said: “As a business, we want to move towards EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) wherever possible. Approximately 15 per cent of our major suppliers already use conventional EDI.

The take up from the suppliers has been particularly pleasing. We think the Open ECX onboarding process and valuable support from the dedicated on boarding team, headed up by Patricia Williamson, Supplier Onboarding Manager at Open ECX, is about 50 times quicker with e-invoicing rather than conventional EDI.

The bulk of the remaining 85 per cent – which equates to around a half of all of our invoices received for stock – are the ones we wanted to reach with Open ECX’s e-invoicing system. We were looking for a quick win, with high rates of supplier onboarding and noticeable results in terms of invoicing processing speeds.

I am pleased to say that the system is delivering everything we wanted from it. We’ve rolled it out on a phased basis and so far more than 90 suppliers have taken it onboard. For these suppliers, the process has become pretty slick, with their invoices processed and validated very quickly and reliably.”

Matthew Jones, CEO at Open ECX, added: “We’re delighted that our e-invoicing system is working so well for Howarth Timber. Our automated e-invoicing solution provides a third path for suppliers that were previously given the options of either submitting paper invoices of going for full EDI invoices.

All they need is the ability to create a pdf invoice. Our system can do the rest, automatically generating, validating and emailing PDF invoices. From Howarth Timber’s perspective, these documents are received and processed as if they were conventional EDI data files and processed directly into their core Financial System – Kerridge K8.”

“I’ve been really pleased with the service and support we’ve received from Open ECX. We were looking for a quick and simple e-invoicing solution that would deliver quick wins, saving us the time and hassle of shuffling huge piles of paper, and they’ve more than delivered on this.”

Paul Cornford, Group Information Systems Manager

Howarth Timber Case StudyDownload PDF

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