Nous Group case study

About Nous Group

Nous Group has been one of Australia's leading management consulting firms for more than 17 years.  The company specialises in delivering consulting services to a wide range of industry sectors including finance, environment, education, agriculture and infrastructure.  Nous Group's travel program included more than 150 travellers with high volume requirements for domestic flights and accommodation.

In 2017, Nous Group was suffering from a travel reconciliation process that was a severe productivity burden for its Accounts Payable staff and its travellers.  Corporate Traveller recognised Nous Group as an ideal customer for implementing Rapid Reconcile and partnered with the company's expense management provider Fraedom to solve its underlying efficiency issues.

Nous Group's reconciliation challenges

The company's travel program produced more than 4,500 invoices per annum and the time required to handle, analyse and reconcile this volume of paperwork had become a significant burden.  The inefficiency stemmed from:

  • Manual processing of travel invoices
  • Double handling of Corporate Traveller invoices by the Accounts Payable team
  • Poor visibility in the travel reconciliation process

Collectively, these factors had reduced accounting visibility to the point where Nous Group could not accurately determine the total cost of each business trip.

The roadmap to change

Nous Group had identified five key objectives that were crucial to boosting the efficiency of its travel reconciliation process:

  1. Reconfiguration of its existing Fraedom EMS to integrate with Rapid Reconcile
  2. Introducing an adaptable and automatic invoice delivery process
  3. Controlled delivery of Corporate Traveller invoices to specific staff
  4. Coding and matching of expense lines to the specifications of the Fraedom platform
  5. Creation of tailor made trip summaries

Corporate Traveller proposed the implementation of Rapid Reconcile to meet Nous Group's efficiency objectives.  Rapid Reconcile would give Corporate Traveller a direct link to Nous Group's Fraedom EMS and quickly enable several key process changes. The integration would allow immediate customised delivery of tailored eReceipts, eInvoices and rich coding data to specific Accounts Payable staff at Nous Group.

Rapid results

The flexibility and easy integration into the Fraedom platform enabled Nous Group to quickly benefit from Rapid Reconcile.  This immediately cut the time spent on handling invoices through daily, touch-less delivery of Corporate Traveller billing data to Nous Group's reconcilers.  It also enabled automatic creation and matching of Nous Group's expense entries to Corporate Traveller invoices. This factor boosted spending visibility by displaying Corporate Traveller's On Account charges in Fraedom and showed Nous Group the total cost of each trip for the first time.

Additionally, Rapid Reconcile's automatic coding feature reduced the need for expense data input by delivering all required accounting references, allocation codes and client specific booking summaries directly into Fraedom. The integration also overcame Nous Group's offline approvals process by introducing a notification system that automatically prompted Project Managers to approve expenses in Fraedom with full visibility of the coding and the invoice.

Numbers at a glance

  • Total time for Rapid Reconcile implementation was 2 days

  • Eliminating manual entry of Corporate Traveller statements into Fraedom saved 16 hours per month
  • Automatic delivery of expense approval emails saved 27 hours per month
  • Reduction of expense approval follow up saved each reconciler 11 hours per month

The bottom line

Implementing the Rapid Reconcile solution with Fraedom delivered productivity gains of approximately 324 hours per annum to Nous Group’s reconcilers. This newfound efficiency increased the value of Nous Group's partnership with Corporate Traveller by creating more time for reconcilers to work on other areas of the business. The implementation and the individual time saved on travel reconciliation delivered more than $27,000 of annual efficiency savings to Nous Group.