Decision Inc., a management and technology consulting organisation, became the preferred partner for Lombard Insurance for the integration and development of its Adaptive Insights platform. The Decision Inc. team provided the Lombard Insurance Finance department with complete integration into their GL system, AccPacc, and seamless updates and reporting to ensure effortless and accurate budgets and planning.
Lombard Insurance is a leading provider of world-class trade and commercial insurance products with more than 20 years of experience and insurance expertise. The company had previously contracted with an Australian organisation to install the Adaptive Insights platform, but wanted a local partner for more personalised integration and engagement.
“Decision Inc. is the only partner in Africa that supports Adaptive Insights, making us the perfect choice for Lombard Insurance’s requirements,” explains Andries van den Berg, EPM Product Manager, Decision Inc. “We spent time with the different stakeholders and did face-to-face interviews to uncover exactly what they needed and how their existing systems operated. Their primary focus areas were to integrate Adaptive Insights with AccPacc, getting the actuals into the system and ensuring it was ready for Budget in March. The entire platform had to be 100% ready, on time.”
In addition to challenges around the process of extracting data from AccPacc and importing it into Adaptive Insights, the Lombard Insurance system was ‘key man’ dependent. This meant that if one specific person could not get around to disseminating the data, everyone had to wait. The goal was to create a solution which would cut back on the length of time required to access the information, eliminate the ‘key man’ issue and streamline the entire process.
Nicky van Buren-Schele, Management Accountant, Finance, Lombard Insurance, explains: “Prior to the installation of this solution, if I wasn’t available to handle the numbers, the input wouldn’t happen as it was ‘key-man’ dependent. I also couldn’t do it as regularly as required which impacted on users as they had to wait on me to input the data manually.”
Van den Berg adds: “Their management pack process was cumbersome and took a while to complete every month, and a lot of people had to manually consolidate data into one Excel spreadsheet. It caused a lot of stress and late nights.”
Van Buren-Schele adds: “From the start we bought into the idea and believed it would transform our system and process. When I heard we could do the integration from AccPacc to Adaptive Insights it sold me on the potential.”
Decision Inc. did precisely what they planned – integrated the AccPacc results seamlessly and automatically with Adaptive Insights. Data now runs at 6am every morning and by the time the Finance division gets to their desks, the data is updated with GL actuals and has the information they need to run reports on a daily basis.
“This solution allows the team to do all the work and calculations on the fly, and considering how complex the insurance business is, this is a huge achievement,” says van den Berg. “One of the improvements we made saw us automate a process that used to take one person two days to complete. Now they don’t need to do anything at all.”
Decision Inc. has given Lombard Insurance something that every business wants – more time. By automating processes and streamlining reporting and data flows, they have given the teams time to focus on analysing the numbers. The system has also been designed to be incredibly easy to use. One person has already written all the formulas, with minimal training, and further adaptations can be done by Lombard Insurance. Decision Inc. can provide them with ideas and options going forward, but have ensured that processes, flows and usage are as intuitive as possible.
“This implementation has drastically affected process and performance,” says Van Buren-Schele. “We do rolling budgets and in the past when we did forecasting it took me a day to update the numbers and send out the excel files. With this new integration it is a press of a button and I can update my forecasts in minutes. What took me a day now takes me minutes.”
Decision Inc. is now working closely with Lombard Insurance to develop similar solutions for other departments in the business. Currently, they are working closely with several planning departments to ensure they develop dynamic and relevant solutions.
“We have immersed ourselves in their business so we can understand their issues in person,” concludes van den Berg. “We prototyped every solution and showed them how it would work, giving them the ability to choose what they needed in context.”
The end-users have undergone training to learn the system and the feedback from both client and employee has been unanimously positive. For van den Berg it was seeing the non-technical people get excited about a technical solution, for Lombard insurance, it was having a team on site that paid attention to their business challenges and delivered a solution which solved them.