Aimbridge identified the need to effectively integrate processes across the organization when transactions took place. Integration became more of a priority when a global private equity company acquired a majority stake in Aimbridge in early 2019, which launched a concerted effort to streamline processes and invest in new technologies.
“Part of the journey we've been on is thinking differently, and looking at the way we perform our service,” said Drew Leavitt, Aimbridge’s senior vice president and corporate controller. “To say, ‘Is there a better way? Is there a more strategic way where we can isolate pockets of functions and streamline that process, use technology to fuel the fire, and create a more cohesive and efficient process?’”
A plan to address integration challenges
Aimbridge leadership zeroed in on robotic process automation as a key element of its new technology approach. It was the first step in seeking to gain efficiencies across the organization by automating transactional tasks and enabling employees to focus on more value-added functions.
RSM assisted Aimbridge in optimizing the processes and data that enable the technology to deliver maximum benefit and return on investment. Additionally, RSM showcased the power of leveraging fit-for-purpose technology solutions combined with RPA. Consequently, RSM led Aimbridge through an independent review of its people, processes and technology and identified areas for process integration in addition to recommending the company leverage some of its existing technology and adopt RPA.
“When we started phase one,” said RSM Director Jacob Hulsey, “we identified the company had as many as four or five processes that were working toward the same goal, which is not uncommon.”
During the initial analysis, RSM identified multiple process improvement areas and then suggested implementing the Automation Anywhere RPA platform to increase efficiency within several previously manual tasks within the company.
Beyond the increased efficiency gained from automation, RSM’s review uncovered additional integration opportunities within Aimbridge’s core financial processes. RSM recommended optimizing and expanding the use of the cloud-based BlackLine accounting solution to bring more automation and efficiency to the company’s finance and accounting functions.
For example, Aimbridge had conducted manual bank reconciliations in the past, which was time-consuming and presented several challenges. However, with reconciliations now conducted within BlackLine, the software automatically imports and compares data while identifying discrepancies that staff now have more time to evaluate.
All told, RSM developed a tailored technology approach and methodology for Aimbridge that is flexible and adaptable to account for an ever-changing business environment. The RSM team helped the company develop a long-term vision of strategy and financial considerations. The company now has reduced costs and saved time through budget reductions in multiple areas of the business.