23 June 2011 – Cardiff and Vale College, which will be formed by the merger of Barry College and Coleg Glan Hafren to create one of the largest further education (FE) organisations in Wales, is implementing a financial management system from Advanced Business Solutions. This integrated system, which will include electronic procurement and workflow functionality, will improve financial reporting and support the new college’s sustainable agenda by eliminating time-consuming paper-based processes. The core modules will go-live on 1 August 2011 with a phased implementation to follow.
Barry College and Coleg Glan Hafren agreed to merge in response to the Welsh Assembly Government’s Transformation Agenda, published in September 2008, which recommended that colleges collaborate by creating economies of scale to maximise benefits to learners. The newly created entity, Cardiff and Vale College, will officially open in August 2011.
Nicola Lewis, finance director at Coleg Glan Hafren, explains, “As Coleg Glan Hafren and Barry College currently use two different finance systems we decided to undertake a strategic review of both colleges’ existing software. After evaluating the market, we decided that ABS’ system was sufficiently flexible and scalable to cope with the greater volume of transactions from the new college and drive efficiency savings whilst supporting growth and change in the future.”
Lewis continues, “We have also been extremely impressed by the professionalism of ABS’ team and their willingness to ensure that our new system will be implemented in just three months in time for our new financial year in August.”
ABS’ system will automate a number of financial processes which are currently manually-intensive. Its 1,000 staff will have instant access to key financial data and be able to raise purchase orders and approve invoices electronically. Authorised users at Cardiff and Vale College will also able to track the status of their budgets 24 hours a day, seven days a week and distribute budget reports to departmental managers electronically.
Lewis comments, “ABS’ system will enable us to considerably streamline our accounts receivable processes and improve financial control across the College. We anticipate being able to raise purchase orders and invoices in just minutes instead of hours each week, considerably enhancing purchase-to-pay efficiency. The system’s flexibility and intuitive reporting capabilities will also allow us to easily determine numerous ‘what if?’ scenarios which will be key as we formulate our business strategy for the new college.”
As the two main campuses of the newly created college are situated 18 miles apart, ABS’ electronic workflow functionality will help to reduce time-consuming and costly paper administration through the elimination of printing, photocopying and posting documents back-and-forth between its different sites
Lewis adds, “Having instant online access to our financial information will help to alleviate the delays and costs associated with documents going missing in the internal post. Eliminating unnecessary paper pushing will also support our sustainability agenda and assist us in minimising our impact on the environment.”
Notes to Editor
About Cardiff and Vale College www.cardiffandvalecollege.ac.uk
Barry College and Coleg Glan Hafren are two established and well-respected further education colleges that have served individuals, employers and the communities across Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan for up to 50 years. In August 2011, Barry College and Coleg Glan Hafren will merge to create Cardiff and Vale College or Coleg Caerdydd a’r Fro, one of the largest most exciting FE colleges in Wales.
About Advanced Business Solutions www.advancedcomputersoftware.com/abs
Advanced Business Solutions (ABS) provides leading integrated business applications and services that enable public, private and third sector organisations to retain control, improve visibility and gain efficiencies whilst continually improving corporate performance. ABS prides itself on getting close to its customers by understanding their businesses and responding to their evolving needs.
ABS's software systems comprise core accounting/financial management, procurement, human resource and payroll systems, integrated with a range of collaborative, document management and business intelligence solutions to extend the value and effectiveness of the finance, human resource and payroll departments, which can also be delivered as a managed or bureau service option.
Customers come from both public and private sectors and include Companies House, Newcastle City Council, WH Smith, Royal Bank of Scotland, Aer Lingus, National Express Group, DFS, RSPB and Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Trust.
Advanced Business Solutions is a division of Advanced Computer Software Group plc, a leading supplier of software and IT services to the health, care and business services sectors.
Ben Carey and Tim Palmer, Advanced Computer Software Group
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