IMF, a prominent NSW player in steel construction, design solutions, and mining services, has “significantly boosted its operational efficiency” by partnering with Australian business process automation specialist and IT channel partner World of Workflows (WOW), according to IMF founder Farhad Malaklou. 

The adoption of WOW’s workflow automation platform resolved long-standing issues in time tracking and payroll integration, Malaklou said. 

IMF and World of Workflows will share their transformative journey on stage at the upcoming CRN Pipeline conference on August 13. The project is a finalist in the CRN Impact Awards – the winning projects will be announced at the gala CRN Impact Awards dinner at the Pipeline event on August 15.

“We needed a solution that integrated timesheets directly with our payroll system, Xero, to streamline our operations and eliminate redundant data entry,” Malaklou said. “Despite exploring various providers, none could offer the seamless integration and functionality we required.”

Founded in 1994, IMF has grown to be a cornerstone in the Hunter Valley region, employing over 90 staff members. The company has been involved in large-scale projects, including the new Warringah Freeway, where accurate time tracking and project costing are critical. 

IMF’s existing systems were fragmented and inefficient, causing operational bottlenecks, he said. After several unsuccessful attempts with other vendors, IMF turned to World of Workflows. 

Although WOW didn’t initially have an existing timesheet program or a direct payroll link, their commitment to custom development stood out. 

“WOW’s dedication to problem-solving and their commitment to developing a custom solution set them apart from the start,” Malaklou said. 

WOW swiftly developed a tailored timesheet system for IMF, ensuring seamless integration with Xero. “The benefits of the new system were immediate,” according to Malaklou. 

He said automated timesheet entry eliminated the need for manual data handling, saving significant time for employees and supervisors. Integration with the payroll system improved data accuracy, reducing errors and ensuring timely payments. The streamlined process cut administrative overhead, resulting in substantial cost savings. 

Additionally, he said the new system provided real-time cost insights for all projects, enhancing financial tracking and project management.

“This streamlined process saves time, enhances accuracy, and provides real-time cost insights for all our projects. It’s truly invaluable,” Malaklou said. 

World of Workflows CEO, Nick Beaugeard, commented on the collaboration, noting that WOW’s platform facilitated a “swift and smooth transition” from the old system.

“Our goal was to create a solution that not only met IMF’s specific needs, but also enhanced their overall operational efficiency. We thrive on challenges like this and are proud of the rapid, impactful results we delivered.”

“Annoying automation roadblocks”

Beaugeard told CRN that companies like IMF aren’t alone in their search for an answer to their operational efficiency woes, and that’s why WOW was created to solve the “annoying automation roadblocks.” 

“WOW combines a low-code workflow designer, robotic process automation, a flexible database, an advanced task system for assigning and tracking tasks, a plugin library, and API capabilities. 

“We were fed up with attempting to automate our clients’ business processes using tools such as Microsoft Power Automate, Dynamics CRM, Jotform, and more. While expensive, integration was clunky and hard to maintain. We set out to design and build a partner-friendly platform that could solve all of these challenges out of the box,” Beaugeard said. 

Elevate partner offerings

Launched into the Australian Partner ecosystem at last year’s CRN Pipeline conference, WOW was designed to help customers and partners deliver technology solutions higher up the value chain, delivering more impact and generating bigger outcomes. 

Available in 52 countries through the Azure Marketplace, WOW’s partner program aims to help partners “move up the value chain”.

“This platform has already addressed needs in education, finance, manufacturing, and more, with partners like eNerds and Conekt elevating their offerings, margins, and outcomes,” Beaugeard said.

“WOW allows businesses to automate their processes through a low-code workflows designer, integrated database, and access to advanced tools such as OpenAI, Microsoft Graph, Xero, Autotask, and many more,” he said.  

“Our initial partners have solved problems from school enrollments (TribeTech), scheduling chauffeurs (Conekt), to delivering integrated AI solutions for NextDC and others. Not only does it help customers solve automation challenges, but it also allows the partner to do this themselves. This elevates an MSP from delivering business plumbing to being a trusted adviser, making their clients more agile, competitive, and profitable, cementing the relationship and enhancing business.”

Next steps for IMF

IMF has expanded the partnership with WOW, which is now developing a project tracking system for IMF, covering everything from tender submissions to awarded projects, with data integration into Xero for accounting.

“By addressing specific operational challenges with tailored solutions, businesses can achieve remarkable improvements in efficiency and accuracy, setting new benchmarks for success in their industries,” Beaugeard said.  

Nick Beaugeard and IMF will reveal additional insights in the session “Evolving an MSP into a business enabler” at CRN Pipeline on August 13. See the Pipeline agenda and register your interest in attending.