Today, Celonis officially released a new set of intelligent Accounts Receivable (AR) applications that optimize and automate AR (or A/R) operations, enable more efficient collections and improve working capital. These AR apps are the result of Celonis’ acquisition and integration of Sailfin Technologies, and cover three purpose-built applications for collections, credit and disputes.
“Celonis Accounts Receivables apps go beyond traditional AR software,” said Harit Nanavati, CEO of Sailfin, during an interview. “The Celonis EMS platform has end-to-end visibility across accounts receivable, order management, credit, supply chain and other business processes,” he added. “With our overall process knowledge, we can intelligently prioritize and automate accounts receivable processes better than purely AR-focused solutions.”
Indeed, the Celonis Accounts Receivable apps are unique among AR solutions because they are integrated within the Celonis Execution Management System (EMS). That integration provides a holistic view of AR process inefficiencies as well as interdependencies with upstream processes such as billing and shipping.
Nanavati also stressed that the Celonis Accounts Receivables apps are designed from the ground up for business users, such as finance executives, AR team leaders and collectors.
“We are combining a user-friendly experience, expected in finance and accounting systems, with process mining and artificial intelligence to create a solution for end business users to optimize their working experience and maximize productivity,” Nanavati told me.
Automation is another key feature of the Celonis Accounts Receivable apps. Nanavati said that automation is a huge timesaver when it comes to AR operations. For example, without automation you have to manually handle your “customer engagement/outreach email treatment and strategy” to ensure your messages aren’t flagged as spam.
“You don’t want to send too many customer emails or too few,” he said. “Collectors need to know when it’s the right time to send an email or make a call. That’s the best way to actually work an account.”
Celonis Accounts Receivables Apps and the acquisition of Sailfin Technologies were two of several announcements Celonis made during the event. The company also debuted Process Sphere™, Business Miner™ and the new Emporix Commerce Execution Platform.
Celonis automatically consolidates and summarizes data from across your transactional and analytical systems in real time and provides stakeholders a single source of truth. Using artificial intelligence and machine learning, Celonis uncovers patterns and root causes of friction across process data from millions of cases and disparate systems.
“In the current environment of increased cost of capital, managing cash is more important than ever,” said Rainer Lehmann, Chief Financial Officer at Sartorius, in a Celonis press release. “The Celonis Accounts Receivable apps are a working capital game changer for us because their integrated process intelligence helps us run AR more effectively, collect cash more quickly and drive really positive change in our past dues and Day Sales Outstanding (DSO),” he added.
Celonis offers three discrete Accounts Receivable apps, each focused on a specific AR function. When deployed together, the Celonis AR apps power each other through shared data and insights.
Designed to be the collections hub for your AR team, the Celonis Collections Management App provides team management functionality, customized views and dashboards for a wide variety of stakeholders, KPI tracking and analytics, intelligent prioritization and assessment of customer risks.
Celonis Collections Management App
For example, the Executive Dashboard gives Finance or Working Capital executives a summary of key metrics and tracks performance against targets in real time.
The team management capabilities enable lean task assignments and tracking. Collections Leaders can use the Steering View to track day-to-day operational performance and get information broken down by assigned collector, customer, balance size, risk scoring or other parameters. Team leaders can create tasks directly within the app, assign actions to team members and coordinate customer ownership. Collectors can capture tactical updates in real time, which the app records within the ERP, and communicate the need for escalation.
The Collections Management App app also facilitates task streamlining by automating common manual tasks, such as dunning emails, dispute coding and credit approvals. Collectors can use the Action View as a homebase for their daily collections activities. The Action View displays relevant details on customers and balances from across source systems, shows a summary view of all customers and balances, and serves as the starting point for all actions.
The App gives collectors AI-driven insights through data-driven prioritization of customers and balances based on factors such as payment history, disputes, and last customer contact. Collectors can get comprehensive customer summaries, add and review updates for the latest interactions, and see customers and outstanding balances prioritized for them. Customer credit information, processed by the Credit Management App, is intelligently integrated in real time.
The Celonis Credit Management App is designed to improve the efficiency and accuracy of credit operations. It combines data-driven risk assessment with centralized customer information to streamline approval processes, minimize risk and simplify customer onboarding.
Celonis Credit Management App
The app gives you the ability to assess customers’ credit risk in real-time by preparing a prioritized list of customers based on credit utilization, credit exposure and past behavior. You can design credit limits to adjust automatically based on parameters. And as noted above, credit considerations from the Credit Management App are used by the Collections Management App for customer prioritization.
The app, which Celonis co-innovated with German manufacturing company HARTING Technology Group, can also drive faster, more accurate credit decisions through its intelligent credit limit suggestion. You can see relevant customer and balance data summarized in one place and use Action Flows to accelerate the credit approval process.
You can also enhance your credit processing and make more informed decisions by integrating third-party and custom data, such as information from standard credit bureaus and your own scorecards.
“The new Celonis Accounts Receivable Credit Management App enables our credit analysts to focus on higher-value work,” said Michael Kleffmann, Head of Global Accounting at Harting in a Celonis press release. “It allows us to take a much more proactive approach to our processes, so that we know how to do the right things, at the right times, increasing employee and customer satisfaction,” he added.
“We co-innovated the app with Celonis to streamline our credit processes. Because it leverages data already in our system, credit analysts can get right to focusing on the actual task of making a good decision, not wasting time on data collection and interpretation - positively impacting productivity. We have already seen a 35% decrease in manual credit changes. We are very excited about the AR Credit Management App,” Kleffmann said.
The Celonis Disputes Management App is designed to remove friction from AR processes by tracking dispute impact, accelerating diagnostics and root cause analysis, and enablings dispute resolution at scale. Teams will see all the necessary context surrounding existing disputes in the My Disputes view.
Celonis Disputes Management App
The app records important data points such as dispute category and reason codes, letting you easily capture and track disputes. The app’s built-in metric tracking and categorization capabilities let you analyze common root causes for disputes.
You can leverage automated escalation by assigning owners and resolvers directly within the app. And with its pre-written templates, the app makes it easy to send follow-up reminders to close out open actions.
The Celonis Accounts Receivable apps are available for purchase as Premium Execution Apps at incremental cost. To learn more or initiate scoping, please contact your Celonis Account Team.
Before installing the AR apps, you’ll need to implement the Starter Kit for Accounts Receivable and the Celonis Knowledge Model, a semantic layer that contains Celonis’ constantly evolving process knowledge repository. You will also need to install and configure the Process Cockpit, which tracks relevant KPIs, reveals key inefficiencies, and provides detailed insights into their root causes so you can take actions to resolve them.