Lawton Business Manager Bridget Terry has transformed the operation in the two years.
After the paper’s acquisition by SNI, the organization had never fully converted to Brainworks and had run two systems for over a year. That lead to an accounting nightmare, higher past-dues and angry customers because billing was incorrect. In some cases, charges were put into one system while payments were put in the other. Many customers got two or more invoices, none of which agreed.
"We had a number of customers who had ceased doing business with us or stopped paying their bills because they had no faith in what we were sending out,” Publisher David Stringer said. “Bridget has done a great job cleaning up what had become a huge mess.
After the conversion was finally made, Bridget dug into the accounts, one by one, to make sure customers were served. In one case, she even found a $10,000 payment that had never been taken to revenue.
In addition, the paper now consistently closes its books on time, which was not always the case due to poor processes and accounting reconciliation.
As a result, Lawton has moved its current receivables percentage, which used to stand consistently in the high 40s to low 50s, to the high 60s to low 70s.