When $5 billion CB Richard Ellis Group decided to build an automated invoice processing, approval and payment system, it wanted to do it right. So the Los Angeles-based commercial real estate company spent nine months investigating vendors. Many offered ready-to-go, end-to-end packages, according to Margaret Guelzow, the company's financial systems manager. But CBRE decided the best solution was to take performers from four different providers and organize them as a quartet that could harmonize all the different processes the company needed. The players are Cambridge Solutions, Bank of America's PayMode, and rCash Pay and SiteStuff, both owned by Yardi Solutions.
That music is starting to sound sweet. The new process cuts the cost of payment processing in half, Guelzow says, and trims 23% off the cost of invoice processing. She estimates that once the system is fully implemented, the cost of processing a vendor payment at CBRE will fall below $6, compared with an industry average of $11.31 cited by the 2007 IOMA Benchmarking Report.