Indiana Beach is an amusement park located in Monticello Indiana. The property consists of camp grounds, rides & games, lodging, and dining facilities.
The facilities team purchases a lot of products and services to keep the park running.
From hardware to maintain the rides, to food supplies for dining facilities.
The team set to solve the challenge of getting a better handle on the cash flow requirements during the park’s on and off-season.
To control the cashflow the team has to know how much the company was planning to spend before the invoice shows up.
The team already had a manual process in place to control the spending and cash flow.
The facilities team would create paper-based purchase orders and request approvals over email.
Purchasing for Indiana Beach is seasonal in nature.
In the off-season, the purchasing volume is low while the purchasing volume is very high during the peak season.
In the off-season – the purchase orders average around 100 per month and during the peak season, it could go to 200 + per month.
With such a huge volume of purchases, it is difficult to scale the manual purchase order based process.
The finance team did not want the facilities staff to spend hours creating manual purchase orders and waiting on them to get approved.
Not only was it a loss of productivity, but it also created a back-office challenge for the Accounts payable team.
Since the process was manual, the team had to spend a lot of time matching the incoming invoices to the purchase orders.
There were times when the invoice had no purchase order number on it.
When the purchase order number was missing, the team had more work to do to process the invoice.
That included finding out who ordered it and whether the product had been received.
The finance team quickly realized that they needed to automate the process since the manual process was not scalable.
1. The Management now has complete visibility of what is being purchased.
2. The approval workflow affords them an opportunity to control unwanted spending.
3. The automation has helped to reduce the cycle time for issuing a purchase order.
But the biggest advantage for the AP team was to see if the order has been received or not.
When the invoice is entered in ProcureDesk, the invoice is automatically matched with the purchase order.
The order contact is notified that in the case of a missing receipt.
That allows the team to focus on the cash flow requirements and not worry about whether the invoice is a valid invoice or not.
The Indiana Beach team was able to scale the operations with automation to support the needs of the operation.
Rather than being the bottleneck, the team now is the enabler for the operations team.
Employees are able to purchase what they need to buy to run the operations and the finance team has complete visibility into cash flow.
With better purchasing visibility, the team now can see in advance, what they would need to spend/budget for next year.
Purchasing automation does improve purchasing efficiency but it also helps the finance team prepare better budgets.