MetService

Integrated, cloud-based accounting solution brings time and cost savings and better decision making.

MetService

MetService is a weather insights and solutions provider with more than 240 employees across New Zealand, Australia, Asia, and Europe. It combines scientific rigour, valuable data and insights, and leading-edge technology to create ground breaking new products and services that redefine the weather industry.

Legacy systems created additional work

MetService had been using a general ledger accounting system that was more than a decade old and not user-friendly. To make up for its shortcomings, the organisation had created and added supplementary systems, which created inefficiencies. Team members needed to manually extract and import data from one place to another, which meant they needed to spend time reconciling that data to avoid errors.

Shaun Ferris, Systems Development and Change Manager, MetService, said, “Finance team members spent too much time reconciling data and not enough time supporting the business and helping with decision-making. We knew how finance could support the business more robustly but these inefficiencies and lack of support meant the finance team couldn’t contribute the value it was capable of.”

The general ledger system required manual importing that meant team members often spent days each month reconciling between the various systems. Furthermore, because the system was on-premises, MetService was concerned about the risk involved in having all its financial information stored on a server that could be damaged in an earthquake or other disaster.

MetService therefore decided it was time to upgrade to a streamlined, modern, cloud-based financial and management accounting system to replace the legacy systems and standalone components that had been used previously. The business required a solution that would be natively integrated and provide a single source of truth, eliminating the need for time-consuming reconciliations.

Shaun Ferris said, “MetService went to market to find a new solution that would be a one-stop-shop to remove inefficiencies and deliver a robust, resilient, cloud-based system. The CIO already had a directive to ensure all systems were moved to the cloud because it’s more resilient and reduces the risk to the business in case of disasters such as an earthquake, for example. A cloud-based solution would let the finance team access all systems and data wherever and whenever necessary, regardless of the circumstances.”

Intergen and Microsoft Dynamics stood out from the crowd

Shaun Ferris said, “When Intergen came in to discuss the RFP with MetService, we could see the difference immediately. The other companies used a hard sell approach to convince us to work with them. By contrast, the Intergen team asked a lot of intelligent questions and drilled down into the fine details to get a clear understanding of exactly what MetService needed and what the pain points were. This made a big impact on the team and Intergen’s response to the RFP was consequently more detailed, more specific, and well priced for our needs. That made Intergen the obvious choice.”

Intergen worked closely with MetService to implement Microsoft Dynamics NAV (now Dynamics 365 Business Central) on the Azure cloud platform. Using a collaborative approach, the team developed and delivered the solution within a short, five-month timeframe.

Shaun Ferris said, “The strong collaboration between both teams meant the project achieved its go-live date seamlessly. Rather than put pressure on the users by going live all at once, we parcelled it out over a few weeks. This meant the solution was live but we were still able to tweak things. We based the go-live on what features were actually required, rather than trying to achieve everything all at once. This contributed to the project’s success.”

With Dynamics NAV, MetService has further enhanced and automated its invoice management process. PDF versions of invoices are captured in Dynamics NAV, then automatically matched to the relevant purchase order and approved for payment. Automating this process removes the need for manual intervention into the accounts payable process.

The solution also helps manage and maintain MetService’s assets. Previously, MetService had limited visibility into ongoing costs, and allocating and planning work requests was complex. Transferring projects to the capitalised assets was a challenging, multi-step process. Now this is done in a single system, saving time, delivering improved visibility, and ensuring accuracy.

Modern accounting platform saves time and facilitates decision-making

Intergen’s implementation of Microsoft Dynamics NAV on Azure has delivered significant benefits by giving MetService a modern accounting platform as a fully-integrated single system, delivered as a service. Intergen acts as a single point of contact and issue resolution so MetService has peace of mind that the solution will work as expected.

Shaun Ferris said, “Previously, MetService had seven different systems that didn’t talk to each other. This created massive amounts of work including manual processes at the end of the month and on demand. For example, to get information on inventory and project status, managers previously had to email the finance team and it could take up to two weeks to get a response. This meant the decision-makers couldn’t make timely decisions and found it difficult to control spend on projects. Now, that same process happens automatically at the touch of a button and without any intervention from the finance team. This gives managers tighter control over their responsibilities and lets them work in a more agile and responsive way.”

A key benefit for MetService’s finance team is that team members will no longer have to spend so much time on data entry. Instead, they can spend time analysing that data and turning it into information and insights that can help drive the business forward.

Deploying Dynamics NAV in the Azure cloud has also delivered benefits to MetService. It’s a more secure, risk-managed approach that reduces the need for MetService to spend money on hardware and infrastructure. It also means the business can access the latest versions of software and the most up-to-date features without having to conduct a large-scale upgrade program.

Future plans include expanding the solution

In the future, MetService is considering expanding its use of Microsoft Dynamics NAV to include cost accounting, and adding Microsoft Dynamics 365 CRM. The company is also considering adding Power BI for advanced budgeting to include operational and financial data. The current implementation of Dynamics NAV positions MetService to fully leverage Power BI at any stage in the future, which delivers more control and predictability over budgets and operational requirements.

Technology

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central (formerly NAV)

With integrated financial, manufacturing, supply chain, sales and marketing, project management, and services management information from across your organisation stored in a centralised database, your people can work quickly and effectively—helping to drive your business forward.

Microsoft Azure

Microsoft Azure is an open and flexible cloud platform that enables you to quickly build, deploy and manage applications that support your business.

Industry

Professional Services

Using technology to help make the most of your people and your IP.

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