Removing purchase order problems for Littlewood Fencing

Littlewood Fencing, one of the largest and most diverse fencing contractors in the UK, asked us for help in speeding up their invoice processing and approval.

It was previously being handled manually by Littlewood staff. The Excel system that they were using didn’t work well and was slow to load, as well as producing inconsistent results.

We came up with an automated solution which, in its early developmental stages, has removed significant amounts of manual checking.

It’s all about creating smart habits, being efficiently effective, finding and creating tools, and delegating to the experts.

There were three problems we tackled here:

  1. Documents were being processed one at a time, taking approximately 10 minutes each and therefore slowing the turnaround time for documents at the end of the queue. This would only get worse as the company grows and the number of incoming documents increases.

    Solution: The system we have built processes each document as it comes, regardless of whether others are being processed at the same time.

  2. Documents were being printed for manual delivery and retrieval following signature, causing a guaranteed wait between stages in the process.

    Solution: The digital system operates in real time so the relevant people can access any document as it passes through the system.

  3. Manually checking for identifiable pieces of information such as invoice numbers can be lengthy, as it can only be done whenever a member of the team is available to handle sorting.

    Solution: The system has been built to "read" the PDF file and guess the pieces of information that are commonly checked.

“Working smart” is one of Switchplane’s core values. It’s all about creating smart habits, being efficiently effective, finding and creating tools, and delegating to the experts. Whether it’s finding new solutions to tackle pain points raised by our clients, or adding new innovations to our own internal project management system, Helm, our developers are always on the lookout for ways to improve on existing methods and processes.

We’re lucky to have such a large team of smart developers on hand and ready to find effective ways to solve such problems - they’re looking forward to the next challenge!

The Switchplane Team

Hey! We are Switchplane and we help businesses save time and money by building them custom software. This can be anything from a job management portal to a complex ecommerce solution. Want to find out more?

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