Lombard Insurance cuts admin time from three months to one
Decision Inc, a solutions-driven organisation, has been working with Lombard Insurance to increase productivity and efficiency across various departments within the organisation. A recent Adaptive Insights implementation saw the company deliver complete integration into the company's GL system, AccPacc, with seamless updates and reporting for accurate budgets and planning. The implementation has since been extended to transform the budgeting system.
"We were asked to implement improvements to the budgeting system as it was taking them almost three months to put the budget together for sign-off," says Andries van den Berg, EPM Product Manager, Decision Inc. "There were too many man hours spent completing budgets and, with a number of senior people involved, it was a significant time and cost investment into the process."
Decision Inc. went through a lengthy process to analyse Lombard Insurance's budgeting system to identify where specific inefficiencies lay. They found that some areas and solutions were not optimally designed while others needed improvements to make them more user-friendly. The detailed insights and analyses were translated into a solution that would transform the business.
Nushina Hoosen, Head of Finance, Lombard Insurance: "When we purchased the product in 2016, there were no local Adaptive Insig vendors and as a result we started working with an Australian-based company on the solution. The different time zones proved challenging and ineffective. This was further complicated by the fact that Lombard was the company's first insurance client and the little knowledge of the local market."
"The entire process took around four to five months as we worked in tandem with the original integration done by Decision Inc and Adaptive Insights," explains Van den Berg. "We redesigned the original system making it more user-friendly, interconnected, collaborative and accessible."
The original system did not have much in the way of user engagement. It was slow and complex and many users found it cumbersome to use. These issues were taken into careful consideration during the developmental phase of the new implementation to support engagement and drive productivity.
Hoosen adds: "Talking to them in the same time zone was already a big benefit, but they also provided training for us and ensured all the users could use the solution. If we got stuck, we got an answer immediately. If we didn't understand something or weren't happy with a formula, the team would come in, propose a solution and implement it.
"The best decision we made was to engage Decision Inc. Other than eliminating the time difference, we were able close majority of the gaps and redesign templates that were proving inefficient and onerous. The most beneficial for Lombard was the ability to have one-on-one sessions with the individual business units with Decision Inc. and simply the availability and presence of Decision Inc in the budgeting cycle from beginning to end."
"Now that we have implemented these solutions, the business users are embracing the transformation," concludes Van den Berg. "They have taken ownership of the process and are proud custodians of the new budgeting system."
The team that once spent three months preparing budgets now complete the task in one month. In terms of man-hours saved, the cost to business is extraordinary, especially when the price tags of senior executives caught up in the former process are added to the bottom line. The reduction in man-hours saw an instant return on investment for Lombard Insurance, and the increase in productivity, the ease of use of the interfaces and platform capability only added extra value to the final product.
Hoosen concludes: "The reality is that with Decision Inc. coming on board and engaging with the various department heads, we could structure the solution to fit within their own parameters and requirements. With their help we got customised templates and solutions that fit each department, but also a streamlined ubiquity that meant other departments could get what they needed from the reports without interrupting the course of business. Overall this project has been a success and achieved its goal in automating budgets, reducing timelines and increasing accuracy."