Blue Ocean Strategic Partners provided 75% overall time savings by streamlining and upgrading the accounting systems, allowing Oglebay to improve organizational efficiency and significantly improve financial accuracy.
Using intelligent automation solutions, Blue Ocean Strategic Partners evolved the (completely manual) finance and accounting function and put them on a path towards automating many manual and cumbersome processes, minimizing the opportunity for human error and increasing internal/external customer service with Timely and Accurate information.
Introduction: Blue Ocean Strategic Partners and Enabling Excellence at Oglebay
Blue Ocean Strategic Partners is an intelligent automation software provider (located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) who streamlines and upgrades processes to get them to be efficient and organized. Their goal — ”automate to elevate” — is to streamline and remove any unnecessary steps and eliminate wasted time. One critical monthly process is the time it takes to publish the financial statements each month.
They have developed a precise series of steps where the month-end process is accomplished on the first business day of the new month. With this process there is reduced errors in processing, minimizing effort in report generation, and omitting tedious tasks.
Blue Ocean Strategic Partners’ client, Oglebay, consists of 250 Lodge rooms and 54 vacation cottages, including two estate houses, and three 8-bedroom premium cottages with more than 90 years of service. Oglebay is a 2,000-acre public park in Wheeling, West Virginia and has seen millions of visitors over the years. The Park Operations is led by President and CEO, Robert Peckenpaugh who is constantly striving to enable the team do better.
At Oglebay, month-end finance and accounting tasks were never caught up. With our help, however, everything is now being accomplished within the month. They also manually extracted checks and cash POS reports for reconciliation on a daily basis; all of these were time consuming tasks. Here are the highlights of their automation journey:
- Accounts payable was transformed into an automatic processing system for payable invoices with approval by authorized leaders
- They automated Olgebay’s daily production of cash and check POS reports for reconciliation with bag counts
- Daily JEs are now posted automatically with hands free reporting to executives
- Doubleknot CC reconciliation was evolved with automation to download sales and fees data from Doubleknot and accounts summaries from the bank (Wesbanco), creating a comparison worksheet with all data to indicate variances and allow for reconciliation
- Creating purchase orders is now done with easy access for all non-ERP users
- Daily and monthly reports are automatically generated while concurrently archiving various reports from different systems for extraction of data for reconciliation
- Automations will now, on a daily basis, create and update monthly reconciliation sheets for credit card payments that are processed via Shift4 the credit card processing platform
Blue Ocean Strategic Partners recognizes the advantages digital automation provides and thus built a solution through their RaaS (robot-as-a-service). RaaS uses Python and Robocorp to create a malleable and secure program that performs repetitive and mundane tasks with a very high level of accuracy. With this RaaS offering, historically expensive software automation is now cost-effective for businesses of all sizes across all industries.
Blue Ocean Strategic Partners’ approach included meeting with Bob Peckenpaugh (CEO), Rod Haley (VP of Operation) and Karl Radaker (Director of Finance) to identify the specific problems, document current processes, and build the bots. Bob, Rod and Karl are progressive leaders who supported their team to change and innovate during this year-long reorganization. Without their progressive mentality and openness to look at how work can be done differently, this project would not have been a success.
By reorganizing the accounting function, their 20-day process to produce financial statements was reduced to less than 8 days. To achieve this, some accounting processes were streamlined while others were automated because the day-to-day accounting processes are not performed consistently. Bharath Bangalore, founder of Blue Ocean Strategic Partners, functioned as Olgebay’s CFO adviser assisting the team with strategic analysis.
If you are seeking to evolve your company’s processes and alleviate your team’s frustration surrounding mundane tasks, Blue Ocean Strategic Partners delivers valuable digital workers “as-a-Service”.
“Working with Bharath Bangalore and the Blue Ocean team was game changing for the Wheeling Park Commission. Automation fundamentally changed our accounting processes and tools were created to allow consistent available reporting for quick decision making. While this work was happening, Bharath provided forward thinking and dynamic feedback on business processes and structures. This team is amazing.” Bob Peckenpaugh, CEO and President of Wheeling Park Commission, operator of Oglebay Resorts.
We at Blue Ocean are proud of our clients for being self-directed innovators first and foremost, as much as we seek to help them deliver on this vision by enabling access to automation and the concept of digital workers. Bob Peckenpaugh and his team are a perfect example of this complement in action. As a former finance executive, I know the pain of feeling behind on a never ending pile of manual tasks. With this bottleneck alleviated, Oglebay’s team is now working smarter, not harder, in order to focus on even better serving millions more visitors for years to come.” Bharath Bangalore, Founder of Blue Ocean Strategic Partners