Lockstep: Connecting Disparate Accounting Processes

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Lockstep: Connecting Disparate Accounting Processes

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Peter Horadan, Co-Founder and CEO, LockstepPeter Horadan, Co-Founder and CEO
The pace of digitization differs across different functional areas of a business. More often than not, front-end teams are the early adopters of new technologies. Take the sales and marketing teams or even HR teams, for instance. These teams have been using cutting-edge digital tools driven by AI and automation for quite some time to improve the employee and customer experience. But, on the other hand, certain back-end departments—like the finance and accounting teams—are still deeply entrenched in manual operational procedures. The accounting teams, particularly, continue to rely on manually keying information from paper invoices, emails, and PDFs into their accounting systems to prepare monthly or annual balance sheets. Needless to say, these manual processes make their workflow slow and error-prone, often creating cash traps in account receivables (AR) and cash leaks in account payables (AP), which ultimately result in lower working capital for businesses.

“The problem is not only the manual AP and AR handling processes, but also the resulting bad data quality, which eventually leads to mismanagement of cash flow and inefficient collaboration between different parties involved in the reconciliation process,” states Peter Horadan, co-founder and CEO of Lockstep.

The recent COVID-19 pandemic and the rise of remote work has exacerbated such shortcomings. Many businesses now realize the importance of AR/AP automation to help work better with their customers and vendors. “As a result, businesses are now looking to augment their AR and AP functions with modern technologies like the Cloud, AI and automation to unleash undiscovered opportunities,” shares Horadan. Interestingly, this is precisely where Lockstep’s forte lies. “At Lockstep, we’re leveraging digital tools to reimagine how accounting teams connect their workflow to the workflow of their vendors and customers,” notes Horadan.

At the Vanguard of a Changing Time

In the wake of the latest work-from-anywhere culture, a new concept of ‘Connected Accounting’ has emerged. Connected Accounting is all about accelerating cash flow through a shared, virtual workspace for the accounting team to connect and securely share invoices and payments with vendors and customers. “But there hasn’t really been an accounting tool to help companies centralize their AP/AR functions to work better with other accounting departments. We are enabling just that with our suite of offerings,” highlights Matt Shanahan, co-founder and chief strategic officer of Lockstep.

At the center of Lockstep’s solution suite is an award-winning AR automation platform.

Matt Shanahan, Co-Founder and CSO
Offering a slew of functions, including robust dashboards and reporting, Lockstep gives businesses complete visibility to cash flow, team performance, and customers. Further through a combination of automated customer self-service modules, online payments modes, and payment collection activity management, Lockstep makes it easier and faster for the accounting team to optimize the cash flow. As a result, by leveraging Lockstep, businesses can automate a multitude of AR tasks based on complex rules and logic to reduce DSO and increase working capital.

Going the extra mile, the company also offers Lockstep Inbox—another noteworthy solution—that centralizes all the activity management for the accounting teams with defined traceability. Using Lockstep Inbox, the first-ever accounting inbox, the accounting team can access the entire history of a customer or vendor activities without having to deal with messy email threads in personal email inboxes. Accounting teams can also track, prioritize, and resolve their activities, including follow-ups and reminders—thereby improving their existing in-house collaboration processes.


At Lockstep, we’re leveraging digital tools to reimagine how accounting teams connect their workflow to the workflow of their vendors and customers

Creating a Difference Where it Matters

Elaborating on how these solutions can help businesses improve their accounting processes and bottom line, Lockstep shares the story of AmSpec, a renowned oil and energy testing company. For the longest time, AmSpec followed a manual accounting process with a less than satisfactory payment collection rate, resulting in a higher than average DSO (days sales outstanding). But realizing the need for a digital makeover, AmSpec sought help from Lockstep.

Lockstep helped AmSpec streamline their existing data, set up industry best practices and benchmarks in the AP/AR workflow, and implement a customer service portal with an email reminder module. Owing to these, the client was able to increase their productivity by three times the previous amount and shorten the DSO by 10 days.

With many similar success stories under its hood, Lockstep is now planning on global expansion outside the U.S. Adjacent to this, Lockstep is also looking to enhance their payment integration module for covering more payment systems. “Our moonshot goal is to become the ‘Switzerland of accounting and payments,’ and we will continue to pursue that dream relentlessly through all our endeavors,” conclude the co-founders.

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Lockstep

Company
Lockstep

Headquarters
Seattle, WA

Management
Peter Horadan, Co-Founder and CEO and Matt Shanahan, Co-Founder and CSO

Description
Award-winning Lockstep helps businesses create a connected workspace for accounting teams and supplements it with AR automation. At the core of Lockstep’s solution suite is an award-winning AR automation solution. Offering a slew of functions, including robust dashboards and reporting, Lockstep gives businesses complete visibility to cash flow, team performance, and customer adoption. Further through a combination of automated customer self-service modules, online payments modes, and payment collection activity management, Lockstep makes it easier and faster for the accounting team to optimize the cash flow. As a result, by leveraging Lockstep’s platform, businesses can automate a multitude of AR tasks based on complex rules and logic to reduce DSO and increase working capital. Going the extra mile, the company also offers Lockstep Inbox—another noteworthy solution—that centralizes all the communication tasks for the accounting teams with defined traceability