CocoaTree Chocolate Factory Redirects Time Spent Managing Accounts Payable to Value-Add Tasks
With automation technology, they are on track to save 60% of their finance department time to achieve their goal to focus on more critical areas of finance
About The CocoaTree Chocolate Factory
The CocoaTree Chocolate Factory produces millions of chocolate-based confectionary creations each year to satisfy the sweet tooth of millions of cocoa-crazed adults and children alike. In addition to the Factory’s own on-site shop, the new distribution partnerships with Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and Cupid in 2018 drove demand for their decadently drizzled delights to new heights.
Charlie Bean is the CFO and has one staff accountant on his team. The two of them manage all the finances, so maximizing efficiencies with the help of technology solutions was crucial. Prior to MineralTree, the staff accountant was managing accounts payable and accounts receivables. She was manually entering bills into the ERP and following up on lost bills and managing incoming vendor calls. Approvals were performed manually on printed copies of invoices, and MineralTree eliminated all of the manual processing. Now, Charlie can quickly review invoices in the system, route for approvals and schedule the payments.
The Challenge: Reduce manual processes to improve accuracies and reallocate resources to value-added activities
When it came to managing their accounts payable process, the CocoaTree Chocolate Factory found themselves between a rock and a hard candy – hire two or more staff accountants to help manage their accounts payable function to keep up with the growing number of vendor payments or make a decision to invest in some type of automated solution. The good news was that the Factory’s cloud-based ERP system provided great functionality and allowed for multiple users and dashboarding capabilities.
However, their cloud-based ERP still did not solve all of their accounts payable challenges as it did not seamlessly provide the routing, approval, and centralized payment options that they were seeking.
Armed with an ERP to meet the needs of the business, they now needed to focus on a solution that would reduce the manual processes that were consuming resources. With the intent to go paperless, streamline approval processes and have visibility into true cash flow, they sought a solution.
“As the CFO of a growing team, I needed to ensure my time was not being spent on manual tasks while empowering my team to focus on value-added activities. With MineralTree, we can now easily manage accounts payable by auto-routing approvals, scheduling payments ahead of time and supporting our mission to go paperless. And it’s all synced with our cloud-based ERP,”
– Charlie Bean, CFO, CocoaTree Chocolate Factory.
The Solution: MineralTree automates the entire process and ensures the complete end-to-end workflow is followed
There were a number of reasons the organization wanted to implement MineralTree to automate accounts payable. There was an intense reliance on resources to manually process invoices, make payments and capture approvals. Invoices were sometimes lost since there was no systemic workflow being adhered to which also resulted in the organization being at risk of understating payables at any point in time.
Evaluating four accounts payable automation solutions, they decided on MineralTree for the true out-of-the-box integration with their cloud-based ERP. They also knew that once they made their decision, they needed a quick implementation and MineralTree was able to deliver. Adding the ability to make vendor payments by check, ACH, credit card or virtual card sealed the deal.
The Benefits: Payment automation, paperless process, approval management
“As the CFO of a lean team, I needed to ensure my time was not being spent on manual tasks while empowering my team to focus on value-added activities,” Charlie Bean, CFO, CocoaTree Chocolate Factory. “With MineralTree, we can now easily manage accounts payable by auto-routing approvals, scheduling payments ahead of time and supporting our mission to go paperless. And it’s all synced with our cloud-based ERP.”
The timesaving CocoaTree Chocolate Factory experienced by automating their accounts payable workflow was what they needed to support the reallocation of resources to accounts receivable activities (managing money coming into the organization). Removing the need to chase approvals, manage paper invoices and manually search for payment status for vendor inquiries was exactly what they needed.
The Bottomline: Why Choose MineralTree Invoice-to-Pay?
MineralTree delivers an end-to-end accounts payable automation solution fully integrated with many cloud-based ERPs. Multi-tiered approval workflows automatically triggered based on pre-defined workflows makes invoice and payment approvals easy to manage and capture. As volume grows, MineralTree together with their cloud-based ERP will allow the CocoaTree Chocolate Factory finance team to manage everyday tasks while focusing on value add activities.
“Accounts payable management is extremely easy now that we have MineralTree. Manual invoice entry is gone and we no longer have to chase approvers down in order to get payments out on time. Plus, it affords our busy team with a few extra minutes to participate in our weekly new product taste tests – one of the ‘sweetest’ perks of the job. ” Charlie Bean, CFO, CocoaTree Chocolate Factory.
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