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Improving corporate spend management at Mercell

Mercell is the industry-leading procurement marketplace that brings buyers and suppliers together. Suppliers get fast and easy access to the full scope of tenders in the market, and buyers get access to the best suppliers via lean and compliant processes.

Oslo, Norway
Information Services
Started using Payhawk
March 2022
Features they love
  • Integrated spend policies
  • Real-time control
  • Exact Online integration
Leon Steenbrink, Mercell CFO

“The biggest benefits of Payhawk? A combination of efficiency and additional control and I'm happy with both — because that's exactly what we need in finance.”

Leon Steenbrink CFO at Mercell Nederland

Life before Payhawk

Before introducing Payhawk, the team at Mercell was sharing one credit card between multiple employees. Senior Business Controller, David Sandler, recalls that once the team lead approved the expense, employees had to send an email (or another form of a message) to the CFO to receive the 1-time code to make a transaction.

The process was inefficient and meant a lot of involvement (and manual admin) just to deal with credit card payments. There was poor visibility on expenses, and often the finance team had to chase employees to ask for information about payments or request additional documentation, like invoices or receipts.

Louis, Head of Buyer Marketing at Mercell Nederland, says “Payhawk shows you the budget you can spend each month and you can see how much you have spent so far. So you know how much there still is available. That was not the case before when we were all using the same company card.

These processes were very time-consuming. Time that could have been used for things that really matter, growing and scaling as a business.

A cost-efficient and intuitive tool

From approving budgets and chasing receipts to getting info from invoices and inputting data, the team at Mercell was losing a lot of time to manual processes.

Mercell's accountant was busy exploring ways to make their financial processes more efficient and discovered Payhawk. After some competitor research the team quickly decided that we were the best match to meet all the requirements regarding price and capability compared to other options within the market, which were inferior and more costly.

Spend policies integrated into cards to manage company spending

One of the most essential features to Mercell is the spend policies and corporate card controls integrated into the app and cards. This feature mitigates the risk of fraud and provides employees with the right level of autonomy with a defined framework.

Employees can spend as they need for work without breaking policy. They're happy knowing the company's expense policy is built into the tool via spend limits and approval workflows. Meanwhile, the finance team can maintain a good level of visibility, and control over spend, by setting limits on the cards, building workflows, and creating custom fields to categorise spend.

It’s easy for the finance team to promote company-wide compliance by making policy changes in bulk too. With our in-built, customisable spend policy management, they can manage multiple cards with a predefined policy and easily configure limits and card settings for different roles within the company. They can even set custom approval rules.

My favourite feature is having the ability to assign spend policies to employees. I like it because it empowers employees to perform their job function without having to ask for permission to spend money that they have already budgeted.

No more chasing receipts

Now, the finance department at Mercell doesn't have to chase after employees to understand their expenses or get invoices and receipts from them.

Since switching to us, Mercell has had more transparency on its spending. And as the software is easy to use, they don't need much support from our Customer Success team. These two benefits mean that the team can go ahead and make payments as required, while finance can maintain a close eye on spending and make suggestions to optimise budgets and more.

Leon says, “I like to use Payhawk because it meets our targets. It meets the target of being more efficient in using our cards and analysing the data. Especially in what we spend. And what I like as a CFO is that we are better in control of who can approve what”.

Exact Online

Mercell is also using our direct integration with accounting software, Exact Online. This integration allows the easy synchronisation of transactions, expenses, and unpaid expenses such as bills. We enable customers to reconcile data between Exact Online and Payhawk smoothly and fully automatically.

The integration with Exact Online means less manual input is required, thus reducing the risk of error. It also saves us time every month by creating a journal entry, and the invoice support will appear directly in Exact Online, rather than us having to refer back to Payhawk for it.

If you want to learn more about managing your company’s spend, like Mercell, you can read our free ebook on how scaleup customers took control of spend to drive growth. Or, if you’re ready to take the next step, book a demo today.

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