ERP Implementation delivers strong ROI
through effective methodology
Seasons Hospice is a national provider of high quality hospice and palliative services to meet the needs of the people and communities they serve. Through their mission of “Honoring Life ~ Offering Hope,” they ease pain and provide physical and emotional comfort and support for patients and their families and friends.
RESULTS at a glance
The GForce-led implementation helped Seasons Hospice:
Seasons began experiencing difficulties as their business processes failed to meet their increased growth. Their accounting and reporting processes were highly manual, relying mostly on Microsoft Excel spreadsheets and requiring additional staff members to support the processes as the business grew. As their staff and infrastructure grew, Seasons’ profit margins decreased.
Additionally, company executives and leadership desired a “single source of truth” that would provide a better way to analyze data and derive new key performance indicators (KPIs) necessary to plan strategically for growth.
To meet the demands of this growth and position themselves for a thriving business in the next decade, Seasons selected Infor Lawson 9.0.1 to provide a scalable, robust and flexible ERP solution to streamline reporting, capture data and automate data entry. However, Seasons quickly realized that they needed expertise and knowledge of best practices in order to maximize the capabilities of this ERP software.
Seasons chose GForce Technology Consulting because of their experience as a leading Infor Lawson implementation provider, as well as their flexibility and scalability to assist with the implementation.
GForce mapped out the implementation through its proprietary methodology, which provided focus and direction for the project, and ultimately served as the backbone for success.
The methodology includes five phases: Vision, Definition, Construction, Deployment and Support.
The goal of the Vision phase is to gain visibility into decision-making business analytics. To accomplish this goal, GForce first analyzed Seasons’ core business processes related to accounting and confirmed their ERP selection was appropriate. They then reviewed Seasons’ critical success factors (CSF) and project goals for the implementation in order to set appropriate expectations. GForce determined it would help Seasons accomplish the following business objectives:
Reduce the number of manual processes
Provide greater business visibility
Deliver enhanced customer service
With Seasons’ strategic objectives in mind, GForce then defined the scope of work involved, formed the right project team and developed a project plan.
“GForce clearly defined the project’s goals and objectives. They had a very practical application of how the technology should be applied, while balancing best practices with our specific situation,” said David Donenberg, CFO of Seasons Hospice.
In this phase, GForce created automated processes, added new reporting features, developed custom interfaces from the patient billing system and established controls to secure data integrity. This phase included two formal tests—System Testing and User Acceptance Testing—to identify and resolve gaps in the software and validate business processes will function in accordance with operations.
Once the solution was tested and validated, GForce transitioned and deployed the system to 50 functional users. They also provided company leaders with the ability to deploy management reporting to operations.
GForce provided Seasons a managed services agreement, giving them the ability to manage the complexities of their new software environment without the immediate need for in-house expertise to support a large-scale ERP product.
The capabilities of the new Infor Lawson solution helped streamline business processes and provided an immediate ROI. Because manual processes were replaced by quicker automated ones, Seasons was able to reduce the time to close from 15 days to 8 days, with the goal of further reducing it to a 5-day close. In addition, cash reconciliations are now being performed on a weekly basis, instead of one month after close.
A reduction in manual processes also meant that fewer personnel were needed to support those processes. Seasons was able to put a hiring freeze on clerical staff, helping to improve its overall profit margin. Prior to the system implementation, Seasons was hiring one clerical resource for every increase of 50 patients of GForce’s expertise with the Infor Lawson system helped create an improved business intelligence platform. Executives and operational leaders now have enhanced visibility into business decision-making information via reporting, dashboards and analytics. Due to this “single source of truth,” leaders are faster to react to changing business situations and create compelling reports complete with accurate information.
Also, because the system provides a large cost savings over time, Seasons can now invest in other areas of business development. These improvements will lead to enhanced customer service as the company continues to grow.
At the completion of the project, Seasons extended their service agreement and engaged GForce to assess other gaps in Seasons’ IT infrastructure.
“Over time, we will become more self-sufficient on the features and functionality of the system, but having GForce as a guide for quick problems where we are resource constrained has been critical for us,” said David Donenberg.