The medical facility I work for is a cardiology practice dedicated to improving the health of patients in my region. In 2012, we found that our paper-based processes were beginning to incur unnecessary costs and inhibit patient services. Time, overwhelming storage space requirements and the potential liability of misplaced document were only some of the notable factors leaving our administration dismayed with the existing document management system.
Additionally, some of our employees needed to work from home and it was very cumbersome transporting paper back and forth from the office. The docSTAR solution offered my department the flexibility and accessibility needed to leverage telecommuting opportunities for staff, as well as a far more intelligent platform for moving and managing documents. The competitor alternatives simply did not provide the solutions we were looking for, leaving docSTAR as the obvious answer.
Along with this flexibility, we chose to work with docSTAR because it could integrate so seamlessly with our accounting software, Sage MAS 90. Previously, there was tremendous hassle in having to go back and forth between different software solutions. With docSTAR, we were able to simply press the retrieve button right from within Sage MAS 90 and the invoice was immediately in front of us.
Despite initial trepidation about docSTAR’s capabilities, the docSTAR team was supportive and positive. There were a couple things we said ‘we’re not sure how docSTAR is going to be able to do this,’ but the docSTAR Professional Services team was able to assure us that they could absolutely take care of it. They sat down with us during the implementation process to let us know that no matter what we could throw at them, the docSTAR team would come up with a solution.
Though there were a few minor setbacks, the implementation of the docSTAR software and, even more notably, the docSTAR team were excellent. I think one of the nice things that we found was that docSTAR was also using Sage MAS90 for their accounting software, so they were able to bring us over to their office and show us how they were able to integrate it into their situation. They set up a little test scenario and showed us how the invoice comes in, showing us the whole process right there on their software.
After the integration was complete, we rolled out docSTAR into our accounting department. There were multiple early successes, including same-day approval processes, improved accountability, reduced printing costs and accessibility to early pay AP discounts.
With the new digital system, the processes of approving different documents has drastically sped up. The manager gets an email saying that they have an invoice to approve and it only takes a minute. The invoices are approved the same day that we receive them and even takes place within hours of the vendor emailing the invoice.
Another byproduct of the streamlined approval process is how we are able to have far less communication about things getting lost because (a) all the documents are available in the system and (b) document accessibility is tracked. Documents are never lost. This increased accountability speeds up the workflow and allows people to move on to more serious things that increase revenue.
The costs associated with paper trails have been significantly reduced. I also see an unexpected benefit from the drastic reduction in printing: Not only are we printing less, but we have contacted a portion of our regular vendors to tell them not to mail us invoices any more. They email the invoices to us and we enter them into docSTAR so it’s not just my company that is realizing savings, but our vendors are printing less and saving on postage. This unexpected saving can only serve to strengthen the client to vendor relationship and the docSTAR software is definitely the driving cause.
We are experiencing another improvement in our vendor relationships; as invoices are being approved more quickly, payment is rendered in less time than before. In fact, we now are able to take advantage of early payment discounts that were previously unattainable. We were able to obtain a 2% quick pay discount on one of our larger medical supply vendors which is one of the largest accounts payable we have.
After leveraging the time savings and improved efficiency, the staff, too, is impressed. The managers that are using it love it. We’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback about it. I and other management executives look forward to further incremental return as we continue expansion of the docSTAR solution into other segments of our practice.