Aeris Resources has a diverse portfolio of mining operations and development assets across Queensland, Western Australia, New South Wales, and Victoria.
In 2020, they added gold mining to their copper portfolio, and they continue to grow through strategic mergers, acquisitions, and organic growth projects.
Life before automation
Mine sites are complex operations, requiring extensive equipment and services to run. The large outlay of operating and capital expenditure means the purchasing department is processing vast numbers of invoices. Aeris Resources was the same, and because of this quantity of manual administration, the finance team had presented a business case for AP Automation several times without success.
So, when they acquired Cracow Gold Mine from Evolution Mining on 1 July, Dane Van Heerden, General Manager of Finance and Joint Company Secretary and the rest of the team saw it as the perfect opportunity to reduce the manual handling of invoices.
“We were working to transition our dataset from Evolution Mining across to Aeris, and they were already using Redmap. To ensure consistency, it made sense for us to implement it as well,” Dane explained.
Getting the foundations right
When the Aeris Resources team first started talking to the team from Cracow, they found that they had been struggling with elements of the Redmap system. However, Aeris were able to sit them down and listen to their challenges and business needs. They implemented a series of training and education sessions, incorporated changed processes and it made a huge difference!
Once they had finalised the integration of the Cracow Mine, they had a proven model they could roll out across other sites. The team then embarked on a journey to transition the ERP from SAP to Pronto Xi while simultaneously implementing Redmap AP Automation.
Prior to taking on Pronto Xi and Redmap, their AP processes were highly complex and onerous. When they began to roll out the Pronto Xi-Redmap integration, it simplified these processes but worked with the team to customise where necessary. Erin Hancock, Senior Business Systems Analyst, who has worked across numerous different software implementations at various businesses, was impressed.
“The project team was very experienced, particularly with Grace leading it. The project was run very professionally, with all targets / deliverables on time; the team was very responsive and professional throughout the process. I couldn’t fault them,” Erin said.
Aeris Resources went on to acquire Round Oak Minerals in July 2022, who were using various Pronto Xi databases across different entities. The Redmap team was engaged as part of the process to bring the databases across to the Aeris Pronto Xi system. Despite an incredibly tight timeframe, Redmap were able to meet Aeris’s target launch The Aeris team were advised of potential pitfalls, leaning on Redmap’s previous experience to ensure that all issues were resolved timeously, keeping the crucial milestones program on track.
“One can definitely rely on the tested and proven implementation approach of Redmap. I would advise any prospective client to have trust in the process, you can rely on the team to make your transition a success and are in safe hands. The Redmap team is also very stable with low turnover as we have formed a relationship with the team who have remained unchanged since our early interactions,” said Dane.
Extracting the efficiency benefits
One of the critical benefits that Dane highlighted for the business was increased variety in the accounts payable function. By eliminating the day-to-day processing of invoices, the team could move to more of a problem-solving focus and partner with the business to resolve the unapproved invoices.
“With Redmap, you can have a more dynamic role within the accounts payable function. There is much more stimulation; people can identify issues, solve problems, and help the business identify efficiencies… They feel as though they are contributing to the business more,” she said.
Now, with AP Automation integrated into the company as business-as-usual, the Aeris team has more visibility on the accounts payable function. We are able to track and understand the process of the invoices so much more effectively. Dane talked about the benefits of this transparency.
“The biggest benefit of the approval queue dashboards are that you can see how many invoices are with a certain approver at any time and able to follow up. The team is able to quickly understand if there are potential bottlenecks, for example, an employee might be on leave and omitted to advise,” she explained.
As of early December 2022, Aeris has implemented Redmap’s AP Automation at all their sites, and currently working to refine their processes and find small improvements. There have been a few niggles, but the team are responsive and eager to help.
“Ben runs a tight engine. He cares. We had some issues, and he came in and talked them through with us,” said Erin.
The project team was very experienced, particularly with Grace leading it. The project was run very professionally, with all targets / deliverables on time; the team was very responsive and professional throughout the process. I couldn’t fault them…