Royal Flying Doctor Service

Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) Processes 4,000 Invoices per month with Efficiency Leaders

The Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia (RFDS, informally known as The Flying Doctor), are an air medical service based in Australia, were processing invoices manually and receiving almost all its invoices by post, incurring high costs and time-consuming processes. Once RFDS deployed Efficiency Leaders’ AP Automation solution, they were able to reduce the time, money, and manpower spent on processing invoices.


Reduction in Keystrokes


Reduction in Data Entry Errors

The Client

The Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia (RFDS) is one of the largest and most comprehensive aeromedical organisations in the world. It is a not-for-profit organisation that uses the latest in aviation, medical and communications technology, delivering extensive primary health care and 24-hour emergency service to those who live, work and travel throughout Australia.

Today, the RFDS has a fleet of 77 aircraft operating from 23 bases located across the nation and provides medical assistance to over 370,000 people every year. Situated in Brisbane, the RFDS QLD Accounts Payable department receives invoices from various locations throughout Queensland. The department processes invoices for both Royal Flying Doctor Service and RFDS Services Limited (QLD).

The Challenges

Before Efficiency Leaders was engaged by RFDS (QLD Section) the organisation was manually processing over 1000 invoices a month – approximately 80% were sent by post and 20% were emailed to numerous addresses throughout the organisation. Invoices were being triple printed, and hardcopies manually filed in a variety of locations making it a cumbersome process from a time and cost perspective. Additionally, invoices were then stamped, coded and posted to different locations for approval (sometimes with multiple signatures being required).

This lengthy process with various touchpoints meant that there was no common knowledge or visibility within the process as to where and at what stage an individual invoice was. In addition the old process also resulted in invoices being misplaced and multiple printing meant they often had poor image quality.

It was evident that RFDS required an automated digital solution that would not only save time and money but also allow anyone within the organisation to have visibility across the entire invoice lifecycle.

The Solution

Efficiency Leaders solution ensured all invoices were digitally processed, centrally and quickly, with visibility across the whole workflow, basically eliminating issues RFDS faced previously. The most obvious benefit of using the Efficiency Leaders solution for RFDS (QLD Section) included a notable decrease in the previously time-consuming and costly tasks

Invoices are now scanned at local offices and sent via email before being ingested by the platform – allowing tracking of individual invoices and appropriate escalations – particularly beneficial where there are multiple approvals required. With no manual stamping or coding required, and all information extracted and recorded by the solution, this has reduced manual handling dramatically.

The user-friendly task list within the automated solution allows the accounts, payable team leader, to clearly view invoices at their current stage and understand which approver may be holding up the process. Individuals can also access their tasks and action them even while out of the office, using their mobile devices. New tasks can then be assigned to any user by sending them a notification alert.

In addition, the solution automatically checks RFDS invoices for any compliance issues looking to ensure values are properly formatted, with entity details validated via the ABR website, GST regulations are adhered to and cross-checking bank details such as BSB and the account number. These tasks were often either not undertaken by RFDS previously or were costly due to human error.

The Efficiency Leaders solution has been essential to shorten payment times and ensure payment is made, according to individual payment terms, to RFDS suppliers. Shifting from a manual and paper-based process to an automated and almost paperless process has given RFDS a clear vision of its invoice life cycle. The automated solution provides a copy of all invoices against their transactions, which not only gives proof of payment easy to access but also grants a complete tracking and audit trail for ad-hoc or annual finance reviews.


The Results

  • In 4 years, RFDS has gone from 1,000 invoices to 4,000 without the need to hire extra AP staff.
  • 90% reduction in keystrokes and data entry errors.
  • Enabled enterprise visibility of the entire invoice life-cycle (who, what, where, when and how).
  • Drastic reduction in time enabling fast and critical payments to be made.

Maree Quizon, Senior Accountant, Royal Flying Doctor Service, QLD Section says

“At the time, we were looking to take the paper out of our process as it was starting to become a nightmare so we researched a digital solution that could reduce those time-consuming processes. TechnologyOne recommended Efficiency Leaders and it has been great.

Now, invoices are sent to various coders for approval based on the invoice’s code. Thanks to the Efficiency Leaders solution, we have shortened this task from taking two weeks to just one day! “

Read our Case Studies

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