GCI Management Consulting GmbH, based in Munich, has been working for medium-sized companies and groups in the business fields of management and organisational consulting, corporate investment and financial services since 1991.
Since January 2011, the consultancy has been using the time recording and project management solution ZEP in all five branches (Vienna, Bucharest, Milan, Munich and Sofia) and its three representative offices (Bratislava, Budapest and Prague) to optimise time and costs.
Before using the "Software as a Service" tool (SaaS tool) ZEP, the employees of the Gesellschaft für Consulting und Implementierung (GCI) recorded their hours in Excel spreadsheets. "This involved a large time commitment for each staff member and at the same time was difficult to control"says Elke Ploder, assistant to the management at the Austrian location.
For this reason, the consulting firm for small and medium-sized enterprises searched the internet for a web-based software with which users could record their hours easily, conveniently and at any time. ZEP, as it quickly turned out, was the "optimal solution" for the consulting experts, says Elke Ploder. The individual composability of individual application modules and the price-performance ratio also particularly convinced GCI. "We didn't have to book the complete package, but opted for the ZEP professional version with the additional department module."adds Elke Ploder.
Elke Ploder estimates the introductory phase of ZEP, which at CGI took a maximum of 4 man-days, as a medium effort. The two-hour introductory webinar - a seminar held online - was coupled with a telephone conference where questions could be clarified immediately. "The introduction was understandable and logical for all colleagues. It was a good tutorial".she reports. According to the motto "learning by doing", the 15 or so employees at GCI's Vienna office quickly and intuitively familiarised themselves with the new software. "ZEP is simple and self-explanatory due to the help windows, so we hardly needed the manuals."says Elke Ploder.
"However, if questions do arise from time to time, the ZEPSupport team provides us with quick, uncomplicated and expert support." The ZEP advisors in Ditzingen are very easy to reach via the provantis hotline and can help immediately. "This service saves us a lot of time and makes our work easier".explains the executive assistant.
The consulting company GCI uses ZEP to organise time recording, travel expense accounting and project management in particular. Elke Ploder has been evaluating projects and accounting for travel expenses for about nine years. For her, ZEP is a "great relief here, because the evaluations run much faster with ZEP than in Excel." It is also used to exchange data in PDF and CSV formats.
Since ZEP only requires a stable internet connection, employees can access their travel time, hours and project recording at any time, even when they are on the road via iPhone or laptop. In addition, the web-based software is ideal for the four employees in Romania and GCI's freelancers, as they also have easy access via the internet. "ZEP is also available in English. This is of course optimal for our Romanian colleagues and our international employees".explains Ms Ploder. Another plus point: GCI has not yet experienced any technical faults with the SaaS tool. "The software also works perfectly when several colleagues are logged into the system at the same time."emphasises Elke Ploder.
"The customised ZEP software is very effective, as we have been able to optimise both our time management and our costs with the tool," Ploder says in summary. Since the utility value for the company is considerable, it will definitely continue to use the software and possibly also rent the module for holiday recording.