Webinar Recap: How Coca-Cola Bottling Increased Efficiency While Minimizing Costs

March 3, 2014 Allison Carpio

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In our live presentation with Coca-Cola Bottling, Accounts Payable Manager, Steve Richards discussed how he overcame challenges the payables department faced prior to implementing an eInvoicing, dynamic discounting and supplier-self services solution.

Challenges

First, they couldn’t keep track of invoice location and status. When a vendor would send a paper-based invoice to one of the Coca-Cola Bottling branches, Steve and his team couldn’t track it down or find out whether it was approved or not. At the time of month-end close, a big payables question mark remained in the liabilities section of the balance sheet. 

Second, submitting invoices into their ERP was a lengthy, manual process. Upon receiving a paper invoice, they had to scan each individual invoice, adding hours of labor each day. 

“Technology is so advanced...there’s a whole lot more that [Payables Departments] can do than just getting rid of paper.” 

Furthermore, because the time to approve and pay an invoice took weeks, Coca-Cola Bottling frequently missed out on early payment discounts. 

Results

Support Tickets: The pairing of an intuitive supplier portal and a responsive portal support team resulted in an average of only .004 support tickets submitted per supplier. In other words, suppliers became more self-sufficient and the Payables Department spent significantly less time and resources answering invoice inquiries. 

Invoice Transparency: The auditors can no longer count on the Payables Department for any deficiencies, and the payables team had complete control and visibility of all incoming invoices. 

Supplier Adoption: After sending out personalized invitations to their suppliers that explained the benefits of the portal, 87% of invited suppliers enrolled within the first 6 months. Of those enrolled suppliers, 90% are active portal users, resulting in less paper invoices, higher operational efficiencies and more savings in early payment discounts. 

Dynamic Payment Terms: When taking advantage of dynamic discounts, every day counts. For your suppliers who aren’t necessarily behind a computer all day, Dynamic Payment Terms is the answer. For a set of strategic suppliers, invoices are now paid as soon as they are approved. Coca-Cola Bottling receives the highest discount possible and suppliers will get even faster access to cash.

How can you capture discounts from small suppliers without access to internet? Find out in this webinar highlights video.

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Questions From the Audience

  1. How do you protect your cost of goods when an early payment discount is taken from a supplier?
  2. Do you notice prices increasing after suppliers get paid a little bit less? 
  3. How do you make sure suppliers will accept the invitations for dynamic discounting or dynamic payment terms? 
  4. Are any clients using ERPs other than SAP, like Oracle? 

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