Accelerating and Simplifying 360° Workflow
An award-winning, tech-enabled professional services firm, NeoSystems is a trusted business partner that provides strategic back office services vital to running successful companies, associations, and organizations in a variety of industries including government contracting, non‐profits, and other highly regulated business enterprises. NeoSystems offers scalable solutions with a team of industry experts, best-in-class software applications, and an advanced technical infrastructure that leverages cloud computing. NeoSystems has preconfigured and custom-builds solutions and services that are tailored to fit their clients’ needs.
As the company’s client roster grew, many of its employees worked with multiple companies, and the often used email‐based method of delivering information and confirming receipt was no longer the most efficient or secure way of routing documents and transactions through the approval process. Because the information employees and clients deal with includes proprietary, sensitive financial data, NeoSystems needed to find a process that could ensure the security of the documents moving through its own organization and out to its clients, with a continuous eye towards improving efficiencies.
The Challenge: Highly Secure Internal and External Workflow Required
NeoSystems was faced with choosing a workflow management system that would automate critical back office functions, both within the company’s own internal operations as well as back office operations run on behalf of its clients. The challenge was finding a solution that would ensure the security of the proprietary, sensitive information that was currently being transferred via email and improve operational efficiency.
As the Company’s business grew and information security became more of a concern, CEO Michael Tinsley began researching software solutions that would allow NeoSystems to process transactions in a more secure process while also improving process efficiency. Mr. Tinsley also wanted a solution that would deliver value to the client well beyond addressing security concerns – he wanted a process management solution that was so good, clients would choose NeoSystems because they truly depended on that system.
As NeoSystems reviewed the landscape for business process automation tools, Integrify was discovered. In 2013, with an evaluation license for the software installed on NeoSystems’ on‐site servers, they began exploring the solution’s capabilities.
The Integrify Solution
As a 100% web‐based solution for Enterprise Request Management (ERM), Integrify allows an organization to automate a wide range of requests and streamline processes. The software provides form creation, routing definition, and tracking tools for those responsible for participating in a particular work flow or process, minimizing data entry and simplifying requests for approval and fulfillment. The solution eliminates problems typically related to labor‐intensive processes such as manual paper handling and transmission of documents and requests via email. The resulting automated process can reduce costs per transaction 60 to 90 percent ‐a significant savings.
“Integrify offered the most intuitive design tool amongst all the workflow products we reviewed, as well as provided a graphical view of the process in motion,” said Tinsley. “I felt this would allow our process engineers a faster method for designing the workflows, and our non‐technical professionals a better mechanism to understand the processes in which they are participating. Also, Integrify offered us the ability to host the application within our private cloud so that we can better address the high security standards embedded in the Federal Information Security Management Act’s regulations.”
Choosing the right system was critical, as the goal was to get every NeoSystems client using the system. When it was first launched, Integrify was used for outsourced financial services provided to its clients, which included payroll, invoicing, and financial statement preparation and distribution. NeoSystems has always performed these functions internally as well as for clients who have outsourced their back office activities to NeoSystems.
“All processes that we use for our clients we actually use ourselves, too,” said Marty Herbert, business analysis manager. “That allows us to bring real‐world experience to the table when we design and implement processes for our clients.”
The system has quickly grown to encompass human resources functions such as request for new hires, on‐boarding new hires, and separation/termination paperwork, as well as sales referrals, consultant bonuses, and accounts payable invoice processing. Even in marketing, where the team uses it to assign employee blog posts, the system has proven to be a valuable asset. Each process allows the requester to get back to work doing what they are best at doing instead of worrying about sending reminders and notifications. Tracking the progress of the requests is as simple as checking the status in the system.
NeoSystems currently uses Integrify to process about 15‐20 different request types. In the first year, about 7,000 requests were processed, but as new requests have been added, and as the company’s business has grown, the rate has increased exponentially.
Automated Processes = Improved Processes
Reduced Financial Processing Time = Improved Days Sales Outstanding
“The biggest single benefit, in terms of overall impact to NeoSystems, is the improvement in our customer invoice approval process,” said Herbert. “Within our internal invoicing function, before Integrify, we were running on a 15‐day approval cycle, from the initial email being sent to a client manager to finally sending out a bill to the customer. Now the invoice approval time is under a day. That represents a big improvement in efficiency and an even more noticeable improvement to our Days Sales Outstanding (DSO)”.
And Tinsley got his wish—Integrify has definitely become a solution that delivers value to clients well above the benefit of increased security. According to Herbert, both employees and clients have come to expect the ease of request initiation, automated workflow and the ultimate receipt of approvals delivered by the Integrify process and can’t imagine going back to the old manual, paper/email intensive routine.
“Rather than having to dig through hundreds of emails an employee typically receives each day to find those that contain transactional data, open up the attachments, find the information they need to review and then document their approval in a return email, we are able to present the information to users right on the screen, so they can just push a single button and they’re done. The sensitive information does not have to travel through email and our project directors don’t even have to worry about typing up an email response to say they approve,” Herbert noted.
Client Referral and On‐Boarding = Sales People Selling
Other processes that have improved significantly are client referral and new client on‐ boarding processes. If an employee knows of a company that could use NeoSystems’ services, she can fill out a short form in the Integrify system, which is automatically sent to the sales department for follow up. Additionally, this process tracks the initiator of the referral so they will receive a gift card bonus ‐ an added incentive for making the referral. Once the sales department converts the lead into a new client, the on‐boarding process can begin in a streamlined process in Integrify.
Because the sales department is responsible for selling multiple services in multiple departments, a new client might span several service areas and would mean someone in sales would have to send multiple emails throughout the organization, wait for responses, follow up if action was not taken, and keep track of the status of each new client task. Now, someone in sales can fill out one form, hit a button, and based on what was selected on the form, the new sales contact will be sent out to IT, HR, managed accounting services, and any other department to which it might be relevant. The on‐boarding process even tracks and routes information on the commission approval for the sales person involved. This level of automation and traceability has allowed the Sales department to get back to what they do best – selling – instead of worrying about the downstream performance of the individual departments.
IT Functionality = Reduced Manual Support Time
Herbert can attest personally to the benefits enjoyed by the IT department, and said the Local File Copy is his favorite recent addition to the Integrify system. The Local File Copy plug‐in can save workflow file attachments to a local path/directory on the server. When designing a workflow, the system administrator can add a Local File Copy task after any task that may contain file attachments you want to copy or store.
“One of the huge benefits for us has been local file copy,” said Herbert. “I LOVE that thing! As a plug‐in—it has literally saved us more than 10 hours a month, just in file management. On the back end of every one of our processes we had invoices and financial statements that needed to be loaded to a specific and secure network location so that clients could get to the data when needed. We were doing it by triggering a support ticket to our IT helpdesk, who would go into the process, pull out the file, “save as,” and do that for every single invoice or financial statement transaction. At the time we implemented the Local File Copy plug‐in, there was a backlog of about 600 transactions, with approximately 150 new transactions added each billing cycle. It took our team member about two days to get through those, but now the entire process is automated, saving literally days of effort each cycle.”
Return on Investment and Continuing Growth
From Tinsley’s point of view, the foremost return for NeoSystems has been the security the system provides for proprietary financial information. The on‐premise solution offered by Integrify and implemented by NeoSystems ensures there aren’t any breaches due to human error or unauthorized email interception. Because of the nature of the information they process, and the type of clients they work with, maintaining a stellar reputation in this area is vital to the continued growth of the company. With all the security breaches in the news today, this is an area that all companies need to address.
Another major return has been greater efficiency and time savings due to the ease of request generation and approvals. Cutting off two weeks from the invoice approval process is a significant financial benefit, as is saving 10 hours a month in the IT department. “The automation has been great – the fact that the system itself creates efficiency without having to rely on human interaction really pays us back,” said Herbert.
Also, Integrify has given NeoSystems a new tool with which to help its clients. When a client presents them with a manual process, NeoSystems has a tool at their disposal to help automate and streamline their operations. NeoSystems continues to look for new ways to employ Integrify both internally and as a client solution. The development team has been conducting pilot projects using a number of plug‐ins like Excel Batch, Web Services, and PDF Generator. The combination of these plugins allows process administrators to leverage existing work and harness the power of Excel, system interfaces, and form generation for processes ranging from human capital to information technology to accounting and finance.
Partnering with Integrify
In 2014, NeoSystems began a new project for a major client with close to 80,000 employees. The system NeoSystems was chosen to develop would include 1,800 of those employees. Due to the size of this one client, the IT services team at NeoSystems realized that they would need a standalone solution rather than participating in the shared processes which the company uses to support the rest of its clients.
“We knew we needed to set up a separate instance of the Integrify system for this client,” said Herbert. “Because of the experience we gained in designing processes that worked across multiple clients within our managed accounting services, we were able to design processes to address this particular client’s requirements which were much more complex and voluminous than those typically required. We were able to leverage our specific knowledge about Integrify software to help our client incorporate the solution into the rest of their operations. That’s why we became an Integrify partner. When you are in the business of providing back office services, looking for efficiencies and ‘a better way’ to do your work, Integrify is your best friend and has become almost second nature for NeoSystems.”
NeoSystems Corp., based in Tysons Corner, Virginia, delivers strategic back office services and solutions for government contractors, nonprofit organizations, and commercial entities. Utilizing best of breed technology and leveraging in-depth expertise in Accounting & Finance, Human Capital Management, Hosting (SOC1/SOC2, FISMA) , and Information Technology, our team helps companies improve vital operations, reduce their overhead costs and become compliant with complex federal requirements. We enable our clients to grow, become more profitable, efficient, and better equipped to win new business. For five consecutive years in a row, NeoSystems has been named one of America’s fastest growing private companies by Inc. Magazine. For more information, visit www.neosystemscorp.com.