Wheel Ends Manufacturer

The Challenge

America’s leading supplier of wheel ends to OEM manufactures now receives over 200,000 paper invoices every year from its vendors. Manually processing the documents demands the time of twelve employees – a task that the company is automating using ABBYY FlexiCapture for Invoices.

“Dealing with debit memos manually would take four people 3-4 hours a day. With FlexiCapture for Invoices, one person can do it in an hour,” said EDI Group Manager.

Fifty years of innovation, superior manufacturing and dedication to customer support have earned this Vancouver-based company 92% of the OEM market for wheel ends in the United States. Its game-changing excellence has earned it dozens of awards, too – as well as its position as the undisputed leader in high performance products for the heavy-duty truck and trailer industry. “We deliver the highest-rated wheel ends in the world,” says the company’s EDI Group Manager. “It’s enabled us to grow into a billion dollar a year company.”

The company’s growth has also created a large network of vendors – who send it 200,000 invoices a year, almost all of them paper. And this, says the EDI Manager, had to change: “We have twelve people dedicated to entering invoices into our system. And with the number of invoices growing every year, it’s vital to eliminate manual entry and move all our valued suppliers to electronic document interchange (EDI). The drain on resources and efficiency will otherwise be too high.”

As the EDI Manager explains, a critical element in the move to EDI is ensuring that invoice data conforms to a common electronic format. However, as some vendors will invariably submit invoices as PDFs and TIFFs, the company needed a way to automate their data’s entry into its ERP system too. This necessitated a solution for automatically extracting and classifying their information for conversion into the EDI format. “And,” says the EDI Manager, “we needed the flexibility to eventually handle purchase orders, too.”

The Solution

The EDI Manager and his team mapped out stringent requirements that included interoperability with a new Goods Receipt process the company was creating for its SAP ERP solution. After six months’ testing of ten competitors and their solutions, two made the final cut and only one met all of the company’s criteria: ABBYY FlexiCapture for Invoices.