Helped automate a client’s invoice system to enhance billing and reporting functions and reduce dependency on manual efforts and improve operational efficiencies.
Customer Size: Large Organization
Solution: Java, Grails
Publicly traded technology company that provides Internet services through two divisions: Business Cloud Services and Digital Media. The business Cloud services segment offers cloud based services to small to medium size businesses and enterprise as well. The Business Cloud Services segment offers Internet fax, virtual phone, hosted email, email marketing, online backup, unified communications and CRM solutions. The Digital Media division delivers various content through its digital properties. The Digital Media segment offers news and reviews of technology products on its web properties.
The client is dealing in providing virtual faxing services to Corporates across various parts of the world. In order to charge these corporate customers for the inbound as well outbound faxing services availed by them, the client utilized a proprietary billing application. This billing application was manually run by the client's employees to calculate the amount of the bill, import customer information from the database, transfer the invoice files to an enterprise database server and generate bills.
With the changing times, the client required to change the policies and offers and accordingly bill the customers. Since the application was hard coded and operated manually, it was quite difficult to implement changes in the billing structure. Besides, the application posed various issues to the client such as
- Unnecessary line of items was getting added in the invoices of prepaid customers which increased the bill amount
- The application did prorated calculations when the services were stopped in the middle of the month. Some changes in the services plans and calculation period was required for full month billing which was difficult in the existing invoice system
- Several errors occurred due to manual calculation
- Inability to add discounts in the bills on the basis of the offer code selected by the customer
- Required different application for generating invoices in different currencies
- With an intent to deal with these issues, the client thought of automating the billing application process and approached Cygnet to assist in this task.
To automate and enhance the process of the client's billing application, Cygnet Infotech gathered a team of Java developers and testers. We rigorously worked to alter the functionality of the entire application in order to accommodate changes from time to time in the billing, reporting and offer-codes functionalities and performed testing at regular intervals. Besides, we resolved the issues faced by the client in following manner
- Made necessary changes in the coding of the application to resolve the issue of unjustified line of item in the invoice
- Inserted logical programs into the application for changing the billing cycle to charge for the whole month. This solved the problem of incomplete billing cycle
- Changed the database packages to integrate discount with the offer codes in the invoice system to help customers avail the discount depending on the offer codes selected without affecting the other billing process
- Changed the back-end functionality to automate the process of generating bills in the requested currency without changing the application interface
The benefits accruing to the client after altering the functions of the billing application are:
- Removal of manual dependencies and errors due to automation of data extraction and bill generation process
- Flexibility to omit or add items in the bills as and when required
- Enhanced and accelerated the bill generation process
- Improved audit tracking functionality
- Increased operational efficiency