How DocLink Helped Turn SWEPCO’s Accounting Department Into a Well-Oiled Machine
Southwestern Petroleum Lubricants LLS (SWEPCO) blends, packages, markets, and sells lubricants for virtually every type of commercial and industrial equipment. While the company’s manufacturing is in Fort Worth, TX, SWEPCO has independent sales representatives throughout North America. It’s a busy operation with a lean staff, so SWEPCO embraces technology like DocLink that allows it to boost efficiency and productivity. Hear from our client yourself, register for the webinar: How DocLinkSaved SWEPCO Time and Money.
Time to Smooth Out the Rough Edges with DocLink
When Anita Whalen, SWEPCO’s Controller, joined the company one year ago, the company was in the process of upgrading Sage 100 ERP to the current version. She saw an opportunity for additional improvements. “We were highly dependent on paper in our accounting and purchasing departments,” she recalls. “Occasionally, we even receive a sales order jotted out on a napkin. I’ve used document management solutions in other positions and recognized the value one could bring to SWEPCO.”
So Anita reached out to the company’s Sage 100 business partner, MicroAccounting, for advice. “They showed us DocLink and the tight integration with Sage 100,” she says. “It’s exactly what we needed.” The DocLink implementation went quickly and smoothly. “MicroAccounting provided the setup, training, and configuration — really aligning DocLink with our business processes.”
Eliminating Friction in Payables Processing
The benefits for SWEPCO were immediately apparent. For example, most of SWEPCO’s payables invoices arrive through email. “We just drag and drop the attachments into DocLink to start the approval process,” Anita explains. “We’ve eliminated the need to print and file invoices. Instead, the electronic copies are associated with the invoice in Sage 100 so we can access them as needed. It not only saves us time, paper, and filing space — it’s an accounting best practice.”
In addition, SWEPCO processes 250 freight invoices each month. Previously, the workflow was manual and required employees to print a 6- or 7-page document for each invoice, then pass the paperwork to accounting for data entry. DocLink has turned this into an automated, hands-off process — capturing incoming invoices, indexing them, and routing them into SWEPCO’s approval workflow. Once approved, DocLink creates the invoices within Sage 100, ready for standard processing.
“I believe DocLink pays for itself with this change alone,” Anita says. “We’re saving dozens of hours across multiple employees every month. Plus, we have quick visibility into those invoices and have eliminated the potential for data entry errors.”
Less Elbow Grease in Purchasing with DocLink
With accounts payable workflows automated, SWEPCO and MicroAccounting extended DocLink to the company’s purchasing department. Now staff uploads receiving documents into DocLink where they are accessible to the accounting team for verification and invoice matching.
While SWEPCO is realizing significant benefits in payables and purchasing, DocLink’s value extends even further, Anita says. “With DocLink, we can associate nearly any file or document with a transaction in Sage 100. So, for example, I can associate an email or even a spreadsheet as backup to help provide context for a journal entry.”
Fluid Finance Workflows Free Resources
The transition to DocLink provides SWEPCO’s finance team more time to focus on projects that add value to the company. “We’ve got time back in the day to take on strategic tasks,” Anita explains. “We have a small, talented team here, and it makes sense to empower them with the tools that help them use that talent by automating what we can. We might still get a sales order on a napkin now and then,
but with DocLink, we can toss the paper.”
Anita credits much of the project’s success to the MicroAccounting consulting team. “Everyone I work with or speak to is gracious, pleasant, knowledgeable, and responsive. We really appreciate all they do to help us succeed. I would recommend MicroAccounting to anyone — they’re that good.”