LBBW Asset Management is a fund company of LBBW. Among other things, it offers European interest rate products and equity products. In addition, its expertise lies in investment strategies for the commodities sector.
This business demands the utmost care. In order for the bankers to be able to concentrate on their core competencies, the IT must be reliable and the software must be easy to use.
LBBW Asset Management Investmentgesellschaft mbH in Stuttgart has 165 employees. It offers various fund products for institutional and private customers. Intra-group projects are also part of the asset manager's daily routine. For project control and support of invoicing, the company has been using the time recording and project management solution ZEP since 2005.
The advantages of the software become particularly clear in cross-departmental projects: in the form of the constantly updated overview of staff resources and budget, where possible synergies become clear at a glance. With ZEP, "funds in fine work" can be accounted for in a project-oriented and transparent way.
The main reason for choosing ZEP was a recommendation from within the company. One of the employees had come to appreciate the time recording and project management solution at a previous employer and recommended it. "We don't have a big IT department, all distances are short to our IT manager".says project manager Markus Schweizer. When Schweizer took up his position at LBBW Asset Management in November 2010, he already found ZEP. His main task is an extensive group project in which he is responsible for the fund company's part as project manager. He uses the ZEP version "Professional", which can be used to plan, implement, monitor and bill projects.
Before ZEP, there was no IT-supported time recording for project staff. Project management was based on Excel spreadsheets, and services could only be incompletely tracked and accounted for - especially when project teams worked across departments.
No special prerequisites had to be created for the introduction of ZEP, neither on the part of IT nor in the process design. The time required for installation, setting up employee accounts and projects in the software was only five days. Some employees were sceptical at first, fearing greater control, but then quickly became familiar with the system. Schweizer explains: "The system is easy to use because of the good user interface." Today there are no more reservations in the house, "only the effort for the regular entry of the time data into the software is still perceived as high".
With ZEP, time and effort recording and preparation of invoicing can now be done in one. Depending on the customer agreement, the billing mode can be stored as an hourly or daily rate or even as a flat rate. Markus Schweizer uses the advantages of the system especially for the group-wide service project. Since this project is a highly networked activity, the individual processes must be carried out in a particularly targeted manner. So far, 30 people involved are using the software intensively. In the overall process, a service has to be provided and individual services have to be broken down. Schweizer cites a big plus: "Today, where several people/colleagues are working on the same project, you can see synergies and duplication at a glance."
Basically, projects are always newly created in the system: Project names and dates are assigned, employees are allocated to the project and the corresponding access rights are set up, the billing mode - whether by hours, daily rates or flat rates - is determined; regular hours, holiday entitlement, "everything that has to be taken into account for invoicing" is stored. This way, all the data needed for project management is always at hand. "The induction of new colleagues takes 45 minutes, maximum one hour".says Schweizer. The software is "self-explanatory and you don't have to read much".
Particularly important to Schweizer is the low administrative burden: "We have a very detailed overview of which employee is deployed where and for how long and what the project status is." With the software, overviews can be created quickly - and, if necessary, resources can be rescheduled after consultation with the customer.
The most frequently used evaluations are "project time evaluation and proof", "project status" and "project accounting". The high reliability of the data is indispensable here. The short response times and the high stability of the software as well as the range of functions guarantee a high transparency of the project data at any time. If you have any questions, provantis support is always easily accessible.
"Looking beyond one's own nose is also a very important requirement for us in our daily work with our customers," says the website of LBBW Asset Management. In line with this, employees will also be able to use ZEP on the move in the future and record their times and expenses on their laptops while on the road.
Asked for a sentence that sums up the experience with the time recording software, Markus Schweizer says: "ZEP is an easy-to-understand, very easy-to-use system that provides a clear view of the current project status and project times and costs." And: "On my screen, ZEP is always open!"
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