Expense Management

MoneyGram

Calero delivers the payback for global financial powerhouse MoneyGram

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money-gram

Industry:

Financial Services

Primary Business:

Global money transfer
and payment services

Annual Revenues:

US$1.45B

Number of Locations:

357,000 agent locations,
in over 200 countries and territories

Solutions:

Calero Expense Management (EM),
Calero ManagedMobility Services (MMS)

Background

Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, MoneyGram International Inc. is a global provider of innovative money transfer and payment services and is recognized worldwide as a financial connection to friends and family. Its two core businesses are global funds transfers and financial paper products. It is the second largest provider of money transfers in the world, operating in more than 200 countries with a global network of more than 357,000 agent offices. MoneyGram is a publicly traded company.

Challenges

Many of MoneyGram’s operations rely on telephone communication. Until 2012, MoneyGram’s IT department was responsible for receiving and processing individual paper invoices from 25 different telecom vendors.

MoneyGram’s Roger Dean, director, commercial office – information technology, recalled his experience prior to using Calero, “Some vendors submitted one invoice a month, others would produce 20, and another regularly presented us with 80. It had been like this for many years and administering everything was a very arduous exercise requiring specialized knowledge of each vendor and their services. There was no single MoneyGram employee with all of the expertise to handle everything. Instead, responsibility for processing was spread across multiple people located in several offices.”

He elaborated, “Every invoice was different and we had very limited capability to track variations from one month to the next. Our data lived on unlinked spreadsheets so obtaining an account history was time-consuming which also made it difficult to determine if there were any discrepancies in bills. Without empirical, historical data, we had very low negotiating power when it came to rate reviews, and relied too heavily on our vendors to report accurately on how much we were spending for a particular service.”

Solution

Dean issued a request for proposal for a more efficient, informative solution. He noted, “One of the interesting things that we sensed during the RFP review process was that the really big expense management players tended to deal with annual telecom expenses much larger than ours, which gave us cause for concern that we might not get the attention that we felt we needed to be successful. Calero appeared to be different, we received – and still receive – very fast response to our inquiries, up and down the food chain, and there’s a lot to be said for that level of attention.”

Calero is different: We received – and still receive – very fast response to our inquiries, up and down the food chain, and there’s a lot to be said for that level of attention.

—Roger Dean, director, commercial office – information technology, MoneyGram International

The initial setup phase is critical in creating a robust and scalable foundation for any implementation. With decades of experience to draw on, Calero’s technical team utilized a highly structured process to ensure the MoneyGram project was delivered on time and within budget. Dean recalled, “the expertise of the Calero consultants in executing their process steps gave us a great deal of confidence and comfort that our own internal needs would be integrated into the overall process. This rigor left no doubt that the highly-visible, multi-month project would be completed on schedule and would meet our expectations.”

“We went live in October 2013,” said Dean. “Even though the automated Accounts Payable (AP) feed wasn’t in place at the time, the Calero consultants were able to code our invoices and assign General Ledger (GL) strings in a spreadsheet that our AP staff then uploaded into our financial system. It bridged us nicely until the automated AP transfer was launched. The entire transition to Calero only needed review and the occasional intervention for the first few months to prove we really had a dependable process.

“The Calero methodology was highly efficient and we greatly benefitted from the best practices, accumulated over numerous previous implementations. The steps, however, were sufficiently accommodating to allow us to insert checkpoints along the way, tailored specifically to how MoneyGram does business. I was gratified to find that if I needed a button added to the portal
to give me a particular function, it was actioned very quickly.”

Results

Since going live, MoneyGram has added more telecom vendors to its infrastructure. “Despite the increase, there’s no additional burden because Calero Expense Management makes it very easy to pay invoices and keep a detailed history,” noted Dean.

Without detailed before/after comparisons, quantifying an exact return on investment can sometimes be challenging, but Dean concluded, “The savings that we’ve already identified more than outweigh what we spent on the Calero Expense Management solution.”

Dean and his team enjoy feeling well-equipped with facts for dealing with the major telecom vendors. He said, “To know exactly what we’re spending and where we’re spending it is really empowering. The ability that Calero has given us to easily show vendors how effectively we’re managing our expenditures has changed the whole dialog with them. We now feel like we’re back in control.”

Having everything consolidated into a single database is a tremendous benefit for MoneyGram.

—Roger Dean, director, commercial office – information technology, MoneyGram International

Future

Based on the performance and results from the Calero Expense Management implementation, MoneyGram selected another solution from the Calero portfolio: Calero Managed Mobility Services (MMS). Dean commented, “we did due diligence on what was available in the marketplace, but quickly decided that expanding our relationship with Calero made so much sense. Given that Calero already had all of our data and our payments function, to wrap the mobility data into what was already being done was by far the most painless way to incorporate all of the additional functionality.”

He continued, “Having everything consolidated into a single database is a tremendous benefit for MoneyGram. It also brings efficiencies when I need to verify billing rates or changes to subscription plans. Now I just have one point of contact.”

For MoneyGram, MMS will further improve internal service levels. “We look forward to having a centralized, global service center that can respond to our user requests around the clock and to being able to painlessly enforce our corporate guidelines for the procurement and support for our devices,” concluded Dean.