Case Study: Tamahere Eventide - EXO
CLIENT: Tamahere Eventide
INDUSTRY: Health and Community Services
LOCATION: Australia and New Zealand
PRODUCT SUITE: MYOB EXO Business
New system allows NZ rest home and retirement village to handle complex billing structures and benchmark across the industry.
Founded in 1965, Tamahere Eventide is a reputable rest home and retirement village based near Hamilton on New Zealand’s north island. Over the years, the business has catered for a diverse range of residents with unique needs and financial circumstances. But behind the scenes there are complex billing structures and industry standards to be met. To maintain consistency and accuracy, Tamahere Eventide depended on a business management system. All was well, until the system they were using stopped being supported.
Unsupported and exposed
For about seven years, Tamahere Eventide had been using NZA Gold, an integrated cashbook, general ledger, debtors/creditors and stock system. “In general there was nothing wrong with it,” according to CEO Louis Fick. “It had limited report writing capabilities, which was frustrating. But really, it just didn’t make sense to continue with a system that was no longer being supported.”
Looking for a single supplier
Fick looked at a range of different products. Given the situation with NZA Gold, finding a system that was supported locally was high on the list of priorities. But there were a couple of other important considerations too. “We needed good reporting,” says Fick. “We also needed a system that would integrate with our client management system, Res~Call. Getting the interface right between the two was very important to us.” As luck would have it, Netsoft – the company behind Res~Call – was also a MYOB implementation partner. They suggested Tamahere Eventide look at MYOB EXO and things moved on a pace from there. “EXO was priced right,” according to Fick, “but having both systems supported by a single supplier is what really clinched it for us. When you’ve got two separate suppliers and something’s not working correctly you end up being caught in the middle. With our set up, that just doesn’t happen.”
Preparing for transition
The process of moving from one system to another was relatively straightforward. “EXO is actually quite similar to our old system, at least in terms of layout,” says Fick, “which made the transition a lot easier. We had a test database too, just so we could get to grips with things in our own time.” “That’s actually something we still use,” he adds, “especially if there’s an issue that we’re not sure how to resolve”.
When it came to the switch, Tamahere Eventide waited until the start of the financial year before bringing their opening balances across. They kept the old system running in the background too, just in case they needed to look back through previous transactions.
Accounting for different billing structures
While the front-end experience of the transition was by and large seamless, there were a number of behind- the-scenes technical issues that Netsoft had to take care of to get EXO running just as Tamahere Eventide wanted. The rest home and retirement village has three types of residents: fully private, partially subsidised or fully subsidized. For each, there’s a variety of bills to produce. “Sometimes we’ll have a resident who’s partially private, receives superannuation and receives a government subsidy too,” says Fick. “For that person’s services, we need to bill three separate entities.”
Tamahere Eventide have always created their billing in Res Call. They wanted to continue doing that, but export the data into EXO for seamless invoicing. Michael Beaumont, a consultant at Netsoft explains: “Each resident is associated with a service (or stock code) and each service has a daily rate that is funded by various debtors. We use this information to create billing batches for a combination of billing periods and funders.” These batches generate invoices in EXO against the appropriate debtor. There’s a separate invoice for each resident to make it easier to reconcile against payments when they are received. “It’s not just about creating invoices according to the Ministry of Health’s structure,” adds Beaumont.
“By integrating Res Call and EXO, data can be reported on and benchmarked against industry standards for revenues and costs per resident bed per day.” The clever bit is there’s no duplication across the two systems. When setting up stock codes or debtors, the same set of tables can be viewed in Res Call and EXO.
The reassurance of a safe pair of hands
Netsoft has over 10 years’ experience helping businesses to benchmark targets in the aged care industry. And it shows. According to Fick, they’ve been excellent. “We’ve got a very good relationship with Netsoft – so much so in fact, that they bring their own prospective clients around to showcase our set-up.” “So it’s a win-win both ways,” he adds.
Creating your own reports
When questioned about the most obvious improvements since switching to EXO, Fick points to the reporting. “It’s not just the standard reports. It’s the flexibility you get from being able to create reports yourself,” he says. “I’ve been using various software products for thirty- odd years, so I can do a lot of this stuff myself. It’s good not to have to ask a third party to do it.”
One particular report that Fick has created allows Tamahere Eventide to benchmark against other companies in the aged care service – a process that’s standard across the industry. According to Beaumont, the great thing about a system like EXO is that with targeted reporting, it’s easy to pick up mistakes before billing to various government funding agencies. “That makes it ideal for a business like this.”
A stable system for a stable organisation
Asked about the long-term prospects of the system, Fick is confident that EXO will still be delivering value years down the line. “It meets our needs at the moment, and MYOB is a stable organisation – which means we’ve got a product that’s unlikely to stop being supported any time soon. “In a nutshell, says Fick, EXO gives us a stable accounting system. That might seem like a fairly mundane requirement for any business, but to us, it’s extremely important.” “It’s what we depend on to keep us a stable, consistent business.”