Biostadt, an Indian biotech company that manufactures and distributes crop protection, industrial & commercial pest management products globally, is a conglomerate of Biostadt India Limited, Ingene Organics Private Limited, & Nandi Seeds Private Limited. In its everyday functionality, the purchase of capital goods, local consumables, and other store purchases are highly transactional. While they carried out these vital processes through an entirely offline medium, the huge amount of paperwork involved at the various stages of the vendor invoice approval process wasn’t easy to manage regularly.
From diversions in the invoice amount, wherein the approving authority would change or bypass it, to those invoices arriving at the HO finance team from multiple locations, the process required an effort to work out. First, the vendor would deliver goods. Factory personnel would then create a Goods Receipt Note (GRN) in SAP. The local purchase team would then raise the Purchase Order (PO) in SAP. Following that, the vendor would print the PO number of the purchase invoice and send an invoice to the local manufacturing unit. Several physical copies of the invoice, GRN, and PO had to be preserved and sent across during the approval process. The factory accountant would book the purchase invoice in SAP and send the hard copies of PO, GRN, and Purchase Invoice for approval to the Factory Account Head. They would verify the supporting documents, approve the invoice, and send the requisition to the Factory Head for approval and then to the HO finance team. And while the finance team at the Head Office would have a report of every invoice, local units would not have the required visibility on the changing status of an invoice until it was approved by the CFO and paid.
To bring all the units of the vendor invoice approval process on a comprehensive platform and initiate a seamless process, Crown Records Management offered its extensive workflow solution to Biostadt. To solve their problems and lay down the foundation to a smoother, faster process, it offered a digital solution to Biostadt that eliminated outdated steps and increased the efficiency of the process. The workflow designed by Crown Records Management worked towards a better management experience for the company.
The new workflow works such that the vendors send invoices to the Biostadt finance team and generate GRN and PO before sending them to the Crown SFTP. To proceed, the Crown Workflow Management Tool pulls out the data of the booked invoices from the Crown SFTP and stores the entries in the database. The initiator then attaches vendor invoices and supporting documents to create a requisition. In this process, the initiators upload the scanned copy of the purchase invoice and supporting documents and get a list of dropdowns to select the relevant company code, department, plant details, fiscal year, vendor details, and the relevant FI SAP DOC number. Once these details are sorted, other SAP details such as MM SAP DOC number, PO number, GRN number, invoice amount, and due date appear on the screen. The initiator then sends the requisition to the next approver for verification and further approval. The factory account head approves this request, and the supply chain management head approves the invoice.
The approval hierarchy across departments and locations is pre-defined, so the invoices move towards approval without hindrances. Once everything is approved, the CFO gives the final go-ahead on the invoice, and the workflow is closed. Next, the finance authorizer approves the request, and the verifier in charge verifies the invoice. Finally, the finance team releases the payment against the approved invoice. Following this, a document that includes all the relevant details regarding the invoice, as well as the approval history with specifics like the name of the approver, the date, and the timestamp of the approval, is created. This auto-generated document is effectively utilized for audit.
During the multiple stages of the process, every approver can send the requisition back to the previous user or reject it completely. As the requisition moves ahead, the next users are notified about it via email. These emails are sent to users upon being approved by the CFO.
The SAP entries are maintained in the workflow management solution, and standardization is carried out in the data processing. The workflow inbox provided to the users gives them an idea of the status of an invoice and other related updates. The documents attached to the approved requisitions are stored in the tool’s designated folders- accessible and convenient for retrieval. Crown’s workflow management solution transforms invoice approval into an exclusively digital, paperless experience.
This solution created by Crown Records Management helped Biostadt redefine and amplify the process flow for vendor invoice approvals through a single, reliable platform. The users aligned at different stages of the process were mapped into the workflow along with the set approval hierarchy. Multiple workflows were created to address different requirements and configured in line with the existing processes. The GRN and PO creation was taken care of by SAP. And the approval process alone was hosted and thoroughly managed on Crown’s workflow management solution.