Shortening your DSO is critical to running your business successfully. Any disputed customer cases need to be addressed quickly and efficiently so that you can reduce risk and secure your cash flow. As a wholesaler with customers across the world, the Van Marcke Group could not access the live data they needed to see instantly which customers required a dunning letter and which had already paid.
Although much of the business had moved over to SAP two years ago, the incumbent dispute management tool being used was not integrated and did not provide the live data needed to manage their credit management and effectively shorten the DSO. Furthermore, in order to use the reporting capability, it needed BI which Van Marcke did not currently have.
As a result, customers may have historically received a dunning letter when they had already paid causing dissatisfaction. With these constraints and the lack of a provisioned interface, the AR team researched suitable alternatives.
“Customers can quite rightly be upset if they receive a dunning letter when they’ve in fact already paid their invoice. The time difference between the data upload and the letters being sent meant we were always running behind,” explains Sabine Stein, SAP Consultant, Van Marcke Group.
Following a detailed analysis of competitive products, SOA People’s Credit Management Suite was selected for its ready-to-use functionality and full integration with SAP.
The Dispute Management module has been initially rolled out in the US corporate office, which manages 25 store locations across Arizona, and is being used successfully together with dunning management.
From the initial business workshop designed to capture the requirements, through to implementation, the process was quick and
efficient. The Group installed the software themselves, and all stakeholders approved a blueprint agreement to ensure quality control and maintenance with the support of the SAP Quality Management program.
In the past, if a salesperson took a phone call or received an email from a customer about their account, this information was not automatically shared with the AR team. The SOA People Dispute Management integrated tool is seamlessly accessed by both the finance departments and sales teams, providing users with a centralised solution that gives them access to all information and documentation on dispute case files needed.
Sabine continues, “The core functionality and SAP integration were key aspects, and something that we didn’t find in the competitive
solutions we looked at. In dispute management you have to close the gap between credit management and sales teams; with the Dispute Management module they now collaborate and work much closer together”.
With the centralised tool, all tasks and interactions on each dispute case are visible and actions can be assigned to specific users
so customer accounts can be managed more proactively. The customer experience has also improved because they only receive dunning letters when they need them. The automated reporting also enables the AR team to instantly see figures and analysis
about the top performing customers, salespeople and the reaction times for how quickly disputes are resolved.
Sabine highlights, “Users really like the fact that they have visibility of all dispute cases and oversight of all transactions for that particular customer situation, resolving customer disputes more efficiently and swiftly. I wish I’d had this tool when I was a credit manager!”