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Client Profile

Client Profile
Customer Romans
Location United Kingdom
Staff 400 Employees
Sage Solution Sage 200

Romans Group started life in 1987 as a sales and letting business in Bracknell, Berkshire. Today, Romans is a multidisciplinary property group, offering clients a diverse range of services, including estate agency sales and lettings, auctions, financial and mortgage advice, surveying, new homes marketing, land development and town planning. In 2011, the Group won the prestigious Sunday Times awards for Estate Agency of the Year and Lettings Agency of the Year. Romans employs around 400 staff in 24 offices, covering London, the east of England, the Home Counties and Wales. Turnover for 2012 is expected to be in the region of £28 million.

The Challenge

The Challenge

From the Group’s Wokingham office, Finance Director Michael Palmer explains that managing such a wide-ranging business is no small task, “We have four separately trading companies – estate agency, town planning, financial services and surveying. As the group’s finance director, I have to ensure I’m fully in the picture across them all.” He adds, “The only way I can achieve this is by having easy access to costs, and a way of allocating our revenues to profit centres to identify areas of expansion. More specifically, for the consultancy areas of our business, we must also be able to closely monitor and control time and expenses against projects to ensure profit levels stay on track.”

The Solution

Romans switched to Sage a few years ago, and subsequently migrated in mid-2009 from Sage MMS with bespoke solutions to Sage 200 with Project Accounting. This solution has been driving the business ever since.

Romans is a dynamic company and standing still is not an option for us. Sage 200 provides us with an innovative yet stable platform for consolidating and managing our expanding business.

Michael Plamer , Finance Director Romans Group

The Benefits

Romans’ strategy of being prepared to invest in technology has paid off. Since Romans started using Sage, its turnover has doubled and is set to increase. Sage 200 has created a central point for monitoring money entering and leaving the firm across the entire group. Having this central access means the group is able to manage its finances more easily, while higher level management reporting gives Romans the confidence that management decisions are grounded in accurate, up-todate information.

The Future

Already providing wide-ranging support, the ability of the Sage 200 solution to grow in line with the changing needs of the Romans business means that significant untapped potential remains. One planned development is automating the system for purchase order processing group-wide. As Michael observes, “Manual processes are ‘leaky’ – there’s always a risk of something being missed. By automating the workflow for purchase order authorisation, we’ll streamline and improve this process.”

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