Financial Services Customer Story

How AvidAscend Created Efficiencies for a Community Credit Union

Dawn Palmer with Brazos Valley Schools Credit Union shares how AvidXchange helped automate their accounts payable process

Brazos Valley Schools Credit Union (BVSCU) was chartered in 1954 in Katy, TX as a teacher’s credit union. Now, BVSCU serves much more than educators – the credit union has evolved to serve an entire community, operating across thirteen counties with more than 60,000 members.

The challenge: Approval struggles and inefficiencies with paper checks

BVSCU’s accounting team struggled with inefficiencies – especially in their approval processes.

“Prior to AvidAscend, we were using Excel and would walk around the building with folders of invoices to have management manually sign them. It was a huge challenge.”

If an invoice needed approval from someone that was out of the office or at another branch, the accounting team was forced to try again later or leave the invoices in a folder on the approver’s desk. This caused invoices to be set aside, forgotten, or misplaced, which stalled the accounts payable process and caused headaches for the credit union.

The accounting team wanted an end-to-end solution so that their team could easily navigate and streamline their processes – from entering an invoice to processing the payment. They also wanted the software to integrate with their core banking system, Corelation Keystone, to make the posting process easier.

After thoroughly researching three AP automation solutions, Brazos Valley Schools Credit Union made the switch to AvidAscend in 2021.

Customer Profile

Customer: Dawn Palmer, Accounting Supervisor, Brazos Valley Schools Credit Union
Industry: Financial Services
Products used: AvidAscend
Core Banking System: Corelation Keystone

After working in general management for more than 20 years, Dawn Palmer joined BVSCU in 2012. As their Accounting Supervisor, Palmer leads a team of seven employees and manages the credit union’s accounts payable process.

The solution: Adopting AvidAscend to eliminate paper and save time

Choosing AvidAscend was easy for BVSCU. When asked about making the decision, Palmer said, “We just loved the ease of the AvidAscend software.” Palmer was particularly excited about the Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology within AvidAscend – OCR allows for instant population of invoice data into AvidAscend, so the AP team no longer needs to spend time manually entering information.

Another major motivator in their decision to implement AvidAscend was the Approval Workflow module. This module allows BVSCU to set up automated approval workflows in line with their compliance controls. Invoices are automatically routed through a digital approval process based on the department, branch, or any monetary limits. When it is time for a manager to make an approval decision, they receive a notification via email. 

“My team loves that the management team can approve invoices from their phone, so we don’t have to track them down. I was excited about that. The ease of use is huge.”

Dawn Palmer, Accounting Supervisor, Brazos Valley Schools Credit Union

AvidAscend’s integration with Corelation Keystone was also critical for the credit union. AvidXchange partners with Corelation to provide credit unions with a seamless integration to Keystone, allowing for easy and quick GL posting. 

“The connection to Keystone is great. We not only do the accounts payable through AvidAscend, we do our pre-paids and our deferrals as well. All we have to do is drag and drop a file and run it in Keystone. All of it is very easy, very user-friendly.”

The result: Using AvidAscend to improve efficiencies in AP processes

Before AvidAscend, BVSCU was manually entering 100% of their invoices. Now, vendors can email an invoice to a dedicated AP inbox and the invoice is automatically pulled into AvidAscend. From there, the system populates invoice information using OCR technology, recognizes the approval process the invoice needs to go through, and sends the invoice to the appropriate approvers. Once the invoice has been approved, the AP team is able to leverage AvidPay to electronically pay the vendor using the method they prefer.

As the credit union continues to grow, Palmer is excited to add additional AvidAscend modules to increase efficiency. Next, she is looking forward to implementing the Expense Reports module, which will streamline the collection of employee receipts, credit card charges and other expenses.  

“I’m excited about the Expense Report module because I like that everything will be electronic and trackable for us and the person submitting their expenses.”

“AvidAscend is super user-friendly, and the AvidXchange team is very helpful when we’ve needed assistance. We reach out and whether it’s an email or a phone call, everybody is really helpful and kind. AvidXchange has been a very nice partner for us.”

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