The only constant is change

Interview with MDDP Outsourcing

The interview with Rafał Michniewicz and Michał Bartosiński from MDDP Outsourcing.

WEBCON: You’re one of the biggest polish companies providing accounting outsourcing services. Please tell me a bit more about what your company does.

RM: In general, we provide accounting, personnel and payroll outsourcing services. However, going into more details, as a team of highly-qualified specialists, we help our clients make informed decisions and develop their business based on the right data provided at the right time. We focus on building a long-term and transparent relationship with our clients. The most important thing for us has always been trust and mutual understanding of expectations as a part of permanent cooperation.

MB: We are well aware that these expectations will always be determined by the current stage of the client’s development, as well as the strategic goals they have set for themselves at the time. That’s why we accompany our clients every step of the way, offering full support in the field of services and consulting, regardless of the situation. That is why we make sure that our solutions scale, guaranteeing stable and systematic service, even in the situation of a very dynamic growth of our client.

WEBCON: Business process digitization is nothing new to you. You have already been doing it for years, haven’t you?

RM: Yes, we implemented a document management system over 10 years ago and we have been leveraging its potential to build competitive advantage ever since. Quick and convenient access to digital documents and the invoice approval process tailored to individual needs allow our clients to significantly reduce the time spent on administrative processes and enable them to focus on their core business. The use of advanced IT solutions, combined with the right approach to business processes, is one of the main pillars of our strategy. It is a very interesting and broad issue, but in short, digitization – supported with appropriate tools and processes – allows to create added value for both our customers (quick access to error-free financial data) and for the employees themselves (by eliminating monotonous and repetitive tasks).

WEBCON: Where did the idea come from to trade the solution you had for a low-code platform?

MB: 10 years is a long time and we as a company continue to grow very dynamically. It’s also that our clients have very specific requirements and it turned out quite quickly that we had to make a lot of changes to the existing system – resulting from both the changes within the way we do business, and the need to address unique needs of our clients. We knew that some of those changes could probably be implemented using our internal resources on the business side, but because of how the system was built – it had to be done by an outside vendor. It was obviously very expensive but even more importantly – it took too much time and caused a lot of issues in terms of the quality. Hence the interest in solutions that would allow us to do most of the work by our employees close to the business process, not necessarily by a team of IT specialists.

WEBCON: You started by transferring your customers’ purchase invoice workflow to the WEBCON platform. Why did you start with this process?

RM: There were several reasons – it was certainly the area, where we could provide the greatest value for our clients – unburden them from a large number of duties and greatly streamline the workflow. This is also the process we have a deep know-how in, which we knew would allow us to quickly get on with the project to reap the benefits of automation, and we believed we can achieve that with WEBCON BPS.

WEBCON: We’re talking shortly after you finished the implementation. Has the desired flexibility been achieved? What are your first impressions?

RM: It is too fast to fully assess the benefits, considering both the short time since the first client was migrated and the fact that the learning curve has not flattened out yet. However, we are certainly very optimistic about the results. In the context of expectations, we can definitely see that we are able to do more ourselves, without the IT support – which was one of our key goals.

WEBCON: Has anything changed from your customer’s point of view after switching to WEBCON BPS?

MB: We are not ready to share any precise data yet, but the feedback we got from our clients is very positive. Our intention is to provide customers with services that support their growth and helps them achieve their strategic goals. We also observe some benefits that may not be obvious to the clients in short-term – but they also look very optimistic.

WEBCON: The implementation of new IT systems is always a change for employees. How did you deal with that?

RM: On the one hand, as in any organization, change is not welcomed enthusiastically by all employees. On the other hand, people who have worked with us for a while know that what we do in a certain way today – tomorrow, in a month or in a year we will probably want to optimize and do better. Changing, looking for greater value, questioning the status quo are written into our DNA – you can love it or not, and we try to work with people who do love that about us.
Perhaps what’s even more important, is that we believe no company using accounting services or employing internal accounting specialists, when having the choice of whether they want to pay for processes that bring added value or for processes that do not bring it – will not even think twice on what to choose.

Every accountant asked whether they would like to wake up in a world where their work is no longer needed in a few years, or participate in building processes that help them and allow to focus on more business-critical areas that will still be performed by a human – also should not have a hard time choosing. We believe that the general inconvenience of implementing new solutions allows us, our clients, and our employees be in the place we want to be business-wise.

WEBCON: Automating an invoice approval workflow surely isn’t the end of digital transformation at MDDP Outsourcing. How else do you plan on using the low-code platform?

RM: We have a lot of plans and ideas but, learning from experience, we are not trying to implement them all at once. We are planning to target about both customer-facing business processes, where we can create value for our clients, as well as improving our internal processes, which – due to the fact that we are constantly growing as an organization – is becoming an area worth thinking about automation and optimization.

WEBCON: And if you could approach the implementation again, is there anything you would have done differently?

RM: I believe that it’s impossible to be 100% happy with the implementation out of the gate, and the time spent on perfecting the theory will be verified in practice anyway. We have agreed that we want the 80% of the requirements to be addressed before the implementation, and the remaining 20% will be verified after we go live. That’s more or less what happened, and if we were to do it again – we wouldn’t change our approach. What’s worth noting is that COVID appeared right before signing the contract, which made us hesitate for a second whether it was a good time to invest. Fortunately – based on the belief that in business you need to be courageous – we did not withhold this decision, which we would not change either.

WEBCON: In your opinion, what’s the biggest advantage of WEBCON BPS?

MB: How mature and refined the low-code aspect of the platform is, which results from years of experience, and continuous work on perfecting and developing the platform.

WEBCON: Is there anything you would advise companies which are about to implement a low-code platform?

RM: It’s obvious that all of the solutions available on the market should be analyzed in terms of the planned implementation model – not every company wants to develop its own applications to digitalize processes. However, if you are aware of the advantages and disadvantages of such solution and you have the right resources, we recommend that you gather as much information from companies using this type of tools as possible.

About MDDP Outsourcing

MDDP Outsourcing is one of the largest Polish companies that provide accounting, HR and payroll outsourcing services. A team of over 170 specialists, located in branches in Warsaw and Katowice, is a combination of experience, expert knowledge, freshness and insight in the contemporary realities of business. The company helps its clients make informed decisions and grow their business by delivering high-quality data on time.

Rafał Michniewicz, Partner, MDDP Outsourcing

Rafał has been associated with MDDP Outsourcing since the beginning of the company’s existence. Currently, he acts as a Partner, managing the development of accounting services. He supervises both offices in Warsaw and Katowice. Rafał is a graduate of the University of Economics in Wrocław, and a member of the National Chamber of Statutory Auditors and ACCA. He has been involved in accounting for over twenty years, and in his activities he strives to combine the highest quality substantive knowledge using advanced IT tools with a process approach and understanding the client’s business needs.

Michał Bartosiński, IT Manager, MDDP Outsourcing

Michał has been associated with MDDP Outsourcing for many years, currently he is a Manager overseeing the IT area. He graduated from the Warsaw School of Information Technology, obtaining the title of Engineer. Michał has over 20 years of experience with financial and accounting systems, HR and payroll systems as well as document circulation – both in terms of their production, implementation, integration and supervision of subcontractors. What distinguishes him at work is creativity, unconventional approach and the desire to constantly improve the infrastructure and IT tools supporting customer service.

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