Project story: Digitization of accounting – transparent, efficient, clear

The initial situation

Our customer, a multi-site manufacturing company with sales of around EUR 130 million, had commissioned an IT service provider to launch a comprehensive digitization offensive. It quickly became clear that this would be more than just an IT project. It had to be clarified in which areas digitization steps would make sense. What potential could be realized, and what investments would have to be expected?

The analysis

Digital opportunities and solutions had to be superimposed on the company’s processes and organization in order to answer the question of potentials and investments. HC was commissioned to work with the contracted IT service provider to integrate digital opportunities and requirements of the company’s processes. For this purpose, we recorded and analyzed the processes throughout the company and identified digitization opportunities and potentials with the IT specialist.

We discovered that although a company-wide ERP standard software was in use, many different individual programs and isolated solutions had been created over the years for the flow of information and data. These applications, some of which were autonomous, were not consistently linked to each other with digital interfaces: for example, data collection and time recording systems, different wage and salary software, and many MS Office solutions.

And paper was still a central “data carrier”.

Internal and external communication between employees took place via all possible channels, from e-mail and telephone to signature and appointment folders to paper notes, documents and receipts (letters, invoices, delivery bills, notices, etc.).

The potential for errors and the additional work resulting from multiple entries and transfers between systems were considerable.

The customer’s goals

Personnel costs in the administrative areas were to be reduced. Above all, however, the costs for rejects and complaints were to be reduced and additional contribution margins were to be achieved by avoiding delays in customer orders, avoiding faulty production and faster submission of quotations.

Now the task was to determine the digitization effort.

A review of the existing system solutions (especially ERP and DMS) showed that the providers of the systems used had in the meantime adapted their software to market requirements, so that complete new investments were not necessary at these central points.

Nevertheless, a central communication and control platform was to be created to ensure transparency. The decision was made in favor of MS Teams, which was already installed in the company.

The implementation in accounting

Two experts from HC, specialists in process optimization and in accounting, finance and controlling, first worked with the company’s employees to examine the group’s purchase-to-pay and order-to-cash processes. Tasks, work steps, information sources and paths were quantified and visualized.

HC was commissioned for the subsequent change management. Together with the teams formed from the staff and the IT service provider (head of accounting, financial, asset, debtor and creditor accountants, purchasing, sales, warehouse), automated posting routines were developed that covered both financial accounting and cost accounting. The results as well as the necessary hardware and software requirements (including servers/firewalls/archives/interfaces) were coordinated with the auditors for GoBD conformity.

The digitization experts and the system providers of the existing software (in particular DMS, ERP, online banking) developed solutions that remained close to the standard of the software so that individual programming was avoided as far as possible.

Digital workflows were implemented for approval processes, which became fast and transparent and thus efficiently manageable.

The result

The accountants are freed from a large part of manual voucher entry and other postings. Running after receipts, sorting and filing receipts – all tasks that are now largely eliminated. This is because incoming and outgoing invoices as well as bank statements are read automatically and transferred to the posting journals with posting suggestions.

The time offset of the postings is limited to a maximum of one day.

The bookkeepers no longer primarily make entries, but they monitor and control the accounting. They can now process the accounting transactions in such a way that financial accounting and cost accounting more transparently reflect the economic development and the situation. This not only promotes quality assurance and quality development, but also significantly strengthens the esteem in which accountants are held in their function within the company.

The speed of information availability and the range of information is largely in real time thanks to the largely automated bookings, which can be viewed dynamically at any time via dashboards and further processed. Thanks to the automations that have been set up, absences due to illness, vacations, and learning phases have significantly less impact on the flow of information than before.

  • Reports are generated more quickly (automated).
  • Questions from departments are reduced to a minimum.
  • Dunning is more reliable, liquidity management more secure.
  • Inventory valuation and cost accounting take place on a considerably more secure and up-to-date level due to the extensive avoidance of manual entries.
  • Qualification requirements for productive employees have been drastically reduced.


The digital transformation of a company is a complex process, but one that has great potential. For it to succeed, processes and company data must be fundamentally analyzed. With a qualified team of IT and change management experts, the digital transformation process is structured and leads to success.

Contact us with your questions about your accounting system before it falls by the wayside.

Feel free to make a non-binding appointment with one of our experts.

Dr. Armin Bratz – Heiner Winters