Towergate selects Compleat Software to automate purchasing for 100+ businesses units across the UK

Europe’s largest independently owned insurance intermediary with 4,000 staff across 100 UK offices is using Compleat’s Purchase to Pay software to fully automate the purchasing process, improve spend control and drive improved efficiency and productivity.

Compleat Software is automating the centralised purchasing processes for Towergate, Europe’s largest independently owned insurance intermediary, across 100 federated business entities with Compleat Purchase to Pay.

The new spend control solution has automated the purchasing process through a browserbased system which is tightly integrated with Towergate’s existing Microsoft Dynamics GP financial accounting system. The new solution provides the centralised purchasing for IT, Telephony and Property purchasing across the group of companies, to some 400 users.

The entire project order was valued in excess of £98,000 for 400 users and represented a significant step change in terms of historical costs for this level of business automation.

Compleat is used by all of Towergate’s 100 UK offices and the management confidently expect this investment to be recouped within 18 months through improved productivity and saving from centralised, consolidated purchasing.

The Compleat system improves Towergate’s ability to manage costs and increase control over corporate spend. This is achieved through structured work hours for approvals and tight real-time integration with the Microsoft Dynamics GP accounting software. Compleat also provides real-time commitment accounting enabling both the remote offices and head office to monitor purchasing commitments as they are made to improve cashflow management.

Towergate is Europe’s largest independently owned insurance intermediary established in 1997. It is an entrepreneurial company, with over 4,000 committed staff based across 100 UK offices, providing insurance in niche markets ranging from holiday homes to cherished cars to both business and individual customers.

Mike Newman, Chief Information Officer at Towergate, comments, “Towergate is a fast growing organisation with 100 offices across the UK. We recognised that we required a functionally rich Purchase to Pay solution to replace an in-house solution which we had outgrown. We looked at a number of suppliers and shortlisted two solutions, one of which was Compleat.”

Newman continues, “Compleat was selected because not only did it meet the business requirements, but we recognised that ease of use was going to be critical in getting all its locations to adopt the solution quickly and easily. The pricing of Compleat was compelling compared to the alternative solution, but this was less important than getting the best solution for our needs. Compleat does offer good value for money.”

Newman adds, “The tight integration with our accounting function was a key aspect in the selection of Compleat, but ease of use is pretty fundamental also. Compleat is used by some 400 staff in the organisation, most of whom have no prior experience of this type of application. Compleat is reasonably easy to use. It removes the need for the user to know anything about our financial function, yet enables automated commitment accounting and budget control ‘out of the box’.”

The organisation was looking to leverage the value of scale through cutting the cost of purchasing, increasing speed and efficiency in the purchasing process and to increase control over corporate spend by replacing its home grown “stand alone” purchasing software with a fully-automated browser-based solution which integrated into the Dynamics GP accounting software.

Purchase requests (requisitions) are generated by the subsidiary trading businesses, then collated and managed through the head office centralised purchasing department. Towergate then maximises its buying power by achieving the best prices and terms for the goods and services required.

The Compleat Purchase to Pay system enables each company to raise a request from Compleat catalogues to purchase approved products and services, confirm the availability of budget and enable local management to approve the request. The automated workflow sends this request to the head office purchasing team who review, consolidate with similar requests from other locations and determine the best supplier to fulfil the requirement after negotiating the best possible terms.

Once finally approved by head office, all interested parties are automatically notified that the order has been placed and delivery dates expected. A single consolidated purchase request at head office may be for multiple Towergate business units, relating to multiple suppliers; each delivering to multiple locations using standard functionality within Compleat.

In order to maximise efficiency and significantly reduce costs of the internal accounting process, Compleat addresses the requirement of a central purchasing operation to automatically re-charge purchasing costs back to the relevant business unit. Compleat enables the automatic creation and posting of cross-charge sales invoices to the purchasing subsidiary company, automatically dividing the cost between a number of offices if necessary.

Towergate has enabled receipting and stock control for some aspects of its purchasing process with the option to extend this in the future. The system is also configured to manage stock control for consumables and high volume items such as laptop computers.

On receipt of the purchase invoice, it is scanned and attached to the electronic record of the purchase order and electronically sent for approval to the appropriate authority. Once approved, the transaction is automatically posted to MS Dynamics GP. Compleat then automates the final step by automatically generating the re-charge “sales invoice”.

Compleat has addressed the complexity, time and labour overhead of managing purchasing across a business with 100 separate geographical companies. It is delivering a seamless, paperless, fully electronic process whilst introducing full commitment accounting and centralised real-time budget control; all fully integrated into the financial system.

Compleat Spend Control enables web-based purchase order generation providing cashflow management and forecasting based on both actual spend and committed spend which enables full commitment accounting.

Compleat Spend Control also provides the ability for the finance department to take centralised control over corporate budgets, ensuring that every requisition / purchase order is always in budget and included within the cashflow forecast automatically delivering automated purchase ordering, centralised budget control and corporate cashflow management based on fact. It facilitates a consolidation of suppliers to maximise buying power and negotiate the best possible credit terms, generating the appropriate Terms & Conditions with each order, whilst also capturing the supplier’s performance to aid future negotiations.

Available in three editions – Standard, Professional and Enterprise – Compleat Spend Control integrates with a growing number of accounting software solutions, in real time, with an Application Integration and Translation interface. Compleat is a mature and fully-proven cashflow management and commitment accounting solution with a customer base that spans multiple vertical markets such as Sport / Events, Hospitality, Financial Services, Design and Property Development, Education, Media, Retail and Not-for-Profit.

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