Renewable Energy Sector Focus: Key trends and how businesses can leverage them

December 2022

Renewable Energy Sector Focus:

Key trends and how businesses can leverage them

With 2023 approaching, climate change and the Ukraine crises are driving the growth of the renewable energy sector more than ever. But while current demand signals are largely healthy, there are, as always, headwinds that some businesses in this field will be better equipped than others to navigate.

Phil Keet, CEO of digital transformation specialists, Millennium Consulting examines the current dynamics of the renewables sector, and how companies can equip themselves to leverage the opportunities that undoubtedly exist.

Read the white paper

Unit4 Financials 2022 Q4 Release

Unit4 Financials by Coda 2022 Q4 was made available on 6th December 2022.

The new release contains all the previous Unit4 Financials functionality and new features. Plus, many additional customer requested fixes, highlighting the importance of logging enhancements via Unit4’s Community 4U.

Highlights of the 2022 Q4 release include:

Administration

  • Tasks
  • SFTP key authentication

Finance

  • Matching
  • Deep links to browse transactions can show a period range
  • Browse column widths
  • Show last comment

Structured Output

  • SFTP key authentication
  • Removed features

General Fixes/Updates

  • Message Transport Log can now be opened; previously an error occurred if data in the ‘com_logline’ was truncated.
  • Password is not stored anymore in the database when the password field is cleared in Message Transport Master.
  • Further improvements have been made to the metadata upgrade process and the metadata audit now reports invalid vocabularies.
  • Recording successful logon and logoff events no longer causes a duplicate key error message.
  • Manual depreciation is now included in the depreciation charge adjustment when performing a cost centre transfer.
  • When trying to transfer Cost Centre on an asset where account security prevents the transfer, an error will be raised about not having access to the account instead of a serious error.
  • Billing Performance has been improved when opening large documents in Billing Browse, the element short names are now only activated when the typeahead is activated.
  • Named user licence count is now enforced for Finance users.
  • Analyser will now open correctly from Browse Transactions and Aged Analysis.
  • Cancel document memory usage has been fixed to handle more than 100 individual documents, without causing a system failure.
  • Link table maintenance keeps padding on column ‘oas_linkhead.origdocnum’.
  • Addressed some causes of account summary unmarshalling error.
  • Table Link Transfer Client pads column ‘oas_linkhead.origdocnum’ correctly.
  • Browse details can now show the most recent comment added using multiple edit (the last comment).
  • Tablelink maintenance now auto sizes the column widths when presenting the data.
  • The Matching request Input Extended/PostToBooks has been corrected and no longer gives an XMLi error.
  • When Setting the Element Substitution value to “not used” the element value is now cleared allowing the element to be saved.
  • Intray Management – it is now possible to remove a line comment.
  • Flexi field caching in Assisted Element has been changed to allow Flexi field master changes to be reflected immediately.
  • Pay Status toolbox no longer fails when using an Oracle database.
  • Reminder letter proposals now calculates the page count correcting when items are deleted and no longer errors when reviewing the last page of the proposal.
  • Copy document no longer errors if the document that is copied references an original document which has been archived.
  • ITK Data Editor now allows Statement lines to be updated, and other data rows which contain Financials document numbers as a key. Please refer to the ITK User guide Unit4 Financials Metadata section for information on settings for the object definition.
  • Posting an invoice with attachments now submits successfully to Workflow when it is automatically approved.
  • A goods received note will now not be created when completing a partially received order line with 0 (zero) quantity.

The Release Notes detailing the fixes and features within this release can be found in the Documentation area on Unit4’s Community 4U.


Upgrading Financials is not merely about accessing the new functionality that comes with a new software release. It is also about mitigating technology, operational, and business risk.

Find out more

What are the advantages of digital invoicing?

A flexible digital invoicing solution makes it easy to stay on top of the e-invoicing requirements currently being introduced. Beyond this – and especially in the current climate – digital invoicing offers wider benefits for the finance department, and for the business as a whole.

Fully compatible with Unit4 Financials, Millennium Digital Invoicing (MDI) offers a comprehensive framework for the implementation of digital invoicing. Flexibility is one of the solution’s key benefits: businesses can adapt their invoicing processes if and when required, to reflect the mandatory e-invoicing and e-reporting requirements that are being rolled out in the UK, Europe and beyond.

However, as our customers are already discovering, the benefits of digital invoicing go further than compliance and into key areas such as operational efficiency and cash flow management. Here’s what this could mean for your business.

Digital invoicing: a quick summary…


Digital invoicing – also referred to as electronic invoicing (e-invoicing) – refers to an invoicing system whereby invoices are issued, transmitted, received, processed and stored electronically and in a “structured format”. This structured format characteristic is key, as this is what allows the customer’s AP system to automatically ‘read’ each invoice field and commence the AP processing cycle on receipt, without the need for human input. The fact that data contained in digital invoice follows a structured format also means that invoice information can be logged automatically on companies’ accounts systems. Where mandated, transaction information can also be logged automatically with the relevant tax authority.

Traditional invoicing procedures can eat up hundreds of hours worth of resources each year on both the AP and AR side. For the former, there is often a laborious process of validations; e.g. checking that the amounts and VAT calculations are correct, including cross-referencing with procurement documents. Digital invoicing automates all of this. Likewise, on the AR side, MDI enables you to handle large volumes of invoices in batches, and post them in seconds. For both AP and AR, MDI sends relevant data straight into Unit4 Financials, removing the need to manually input the data into the system.

As an illustration of what to expect with MDI, one of our customers reports using their solution to post hundreds of invoices per minute, while also automating in the region of 95% of the invoices they receive from their suppliers.

Digital invoicing reduces the need for routine payment status checks. Invoices are sent over the net, thereby helping to reduce postage charges, and this fully digitalised workflow demands very few (if any) invoice print-outs.

Especially in the current climate, many finance teams are under pressure to do more with less and to find new ways to reduce operational expenses. By cutting the level of admin involved, digital invoicing can help you to actively reduce the costs associated with invoice management.

Even the most diligent accounts assistant will have the occasional off-day! Where you have hundreds of invoices to manually generate or process, there will inevitably be the occasional missing field, erroneous entry, or an invoice that does not get dispatched. It means time and resources wasted on chasing up, providing clarification, and in the most serious cases, attempting to retrieve funds.

A key benefit of digital invoicing is that the scope for these human errors is eliminated, helping to maintain both your cash flow and your reputation.

Once your digital invoice has been submitted, it is accessible instantly on the buyer’s system. If a sign-off is required to facilitate payment, the person responsible has everything they need for this, all in one place. This facilitates a much quicker, admin-free payment procedure. What’s more, enterprises will very often integrate their digital invoicing procedures with a supplier portal. As a seller, this enables you to check for yourself if the payment has been processed and approved and get an accurate indication of the date for payment. All of this is especially good news for cash flow management.

These days especially, it is not sufficient to merely ‘talk the talk’ when it comes to environmental measures. Business customers, end users – and even investors- want to see actual evidence of the ways in which organisations are eliminating waste and reducing their carbon footprint. Digital invoicing can form a valuable part of any initiative to bring about paperless, low carbon finance operations.

Some businesses might be tempted to wait right up until the point that government mandates kick in before adopting digital invoicing. Others will take a smarter, more proactive approach. If you can demonstrate to existing and potential customers that you are equipped with e-invoicing capabilities at an early stage, it can be a useful trust indicator: i.e. it shows that you take hassle-free payments and customer relations seriously. This in itself can be a noteworthy selling point for the business.

Discover more


Millennium Consulting’s very own framework, Millennium Digital Invoicing (MDI) is fully integrated with Unit4 Financials by Coda, thereby leveraging Coda’s API and well-known flexibility. It offers a robust, standardised way to manage incoming and outgoing invoices, but does so without making built-in assumptions about the format of digital files. For our customers, this means it can be adapted as and when required to different formats and local e-invoicing requirements. Users can stay on top of all evolving tax authority regulations in the markets in which they operate, while also tapping into the wider benefits of digital invoicing.

To see the difference digital invoicing can make to your business, get in touch for a demo.

Book a demo

Financials Focus: Archiving

Join Millennium Consulting’s Webinar Series, Financials Focus event on Archiving in Unit4 Financials

Do you regularly run the archiving function in Unit4 Financials? Are your queries/searches/browses/transactional reports response times slowing down over time?

If so, this may be because your users are searching through millions of lines of irrelevant data that should be archived.

Join our free online event during which Millennium’s Principal consultant, Phil Leaf will share ideas about how to optimise archiving.

This session will cover:

• How archiving works in Unit4 Financials
• The different types of archiving available
• Best practices

With any accounting or financial management solution, regular archiving allows you to control the size of your datasets, speed up processing times and optimise performance. Register today to find out the best ways to archive your Unit4 Financials data.

Thursday 27th April 2023 at 14.00 p.m. UK for 30 minutes

Register here

N.B. this webinar will be hosted via Microsoft Teams, and you will receive a link to the session after registering. 

Phil Leaf

Systems Architect/Principal Consultant at Millennium Consulting

Phil is one of the world’s leading experts in the use of Unit4 Financials, with over 25 years of experience providing strategic advice, project management, implementation, and migration services for clients across the globe.

Did you know...

We are an Elite Unit4 Partner

We are an Elite Unit4 partner and a leading reseller around the world. That means we have the knowledge and experience to design, implement and support the right Unit4 Financials solution for your business. We also make it easy to extend your system, providing additional applications that allow you to augment and tailor your solution to more closely meet your needs.

Find out more

Financials Focus: Year End Process


Thursday 26th January 2023

Financials Focus: Millennium+


Thursday 23rd February 2023

Financials Focus: Upgrading


Thursday 30th March 2023

Christmas Drinks

Christmas Drinks 2022

Wednesday 14th December 2022
5.00 – 7.00 p.m.

Millennium Consulting, 75 High Street, Hythe, Kent, CT21 5JQ


Millennium Consulting is a Hythe High Street based management consultancy with international operations and global ambitions.

Come and join us this Christmas for mulled wine and mince pies where you can meet our team and hear about our growth plans. We are always interested in having local people join us and become part of our success story. Find out about what we do and if you have the finance/technology experience and driven approach that we look for then we would love to meet you.

RSVP

Millennium Consulting recognised as top Unit4 Financials Coda Partner

23rd November 2022

Millennium Consulting Recognised as Top Unit4 Financials by Coda Partner in 2022 Report


Millennium Consulting are delighted to report we have been recognised as the top Unit4 Financials by Coda Partner in the latest Raven Intelligence Guide.

The annual report ‘Guide to Top Unit4 Implementation Partners’ showcases the recommended Unit4 implementation partners based on customer reviews. Released on 22nd November 2022 this report highlights Millennium’s near-perfect score of 4.8/5 with 46 positive reviews to date.

“The Raven Intelligence feedback from our clients speaks volumes for who we are as a business. A customer endorsement is always the best type of confirmation of the high quality of our work. These reviews consistently emphasise the collaborative nature of how we deliver projects and how we work with our customers to deliver a 5* service."

— Jeremy Lucas, Chief Operating Officer, Millennium Consulting

Raven Intelligence is an independent peer review site that helps Enterprise Software customers find, hire, and review the best consulting partner for their implementation.

“The voice of customers speaks volumes, and Raven Intelligence provides a way for Unit4 customers to share their experiences for their peers to benefit from. Millennium Consulting has consistently outperformed industry averages and has received high marks for satisfaction, quality of consulting team and service delivery. They should be in consideration for any Unit4 consulting project.”

— Bonnie Tinder, Founder & CEO, Raven Intelligence


If you’re thinking of undertaking an upgrade, a systems review, transformation programme or are getting set to make the move to ERP or ERPx, get in touch to find out how we can help with that journey.

Get in touch

Financials Focus: Upgrading

Join Millennium Consulting's Webinar Series, Financials Focus event on Upgrading

Are you considering upgrading to Unit4 Financials by Coda Continuous Release? Join this session to hear about the new functionality available in this version, as well as insights on what the Millennium upgrade project looks like.

This event will give you an ideal opportunity to allay the fears and myths that can surround an upgrade and provide you with a further understanding of the new functionality available.

The session will cover:

• Key functionality available in the latest quarterly releases
• What an upgrade involves
• A typical timeline and the resources required

Presented by Millennium’s Director of Professional Services, Chris Peall and Principal Consultant, Phil Leaf.

Thursday 30th March 2023 at 14.00 p.m. UK for 45 minutes

Register here

N.B. this webinar will be hosted via Microsoft Teams, and you will receive a link to the session after registering. 

Chris Peall

Director of Professional Services at Millennium Consulting

Chris Peall oversees all projects & services and is the Product Owner of all Millennium IP.

Chris has over 20 years working across the industry in the Data Science, Business Analytics, Architecture and Project Management spaces. He ensures that you will have access to the most relevant and experienced members of the team to suit your needs, and that results are delivered in an expedient and professional manner.

Phil Leaf

Systems Architect/Principal Consultant at Millennium Consulting

Phil is one of the world’s leading experts in the use of Unit4 Financials, with over 25 years of experience providing strategic advice, project management, implementation, and migration services for clients across the globe.

Upgrading Financials is not merely about accessing the new functionality that comes with a new software release. It is also about mitigating technology, operational, and business risk.

Find out more

Financials Focus: Year End Process


Thursday 26th January 2023

Financials Focus: Millennium+


Thursday 23rd February 2023

Financials Focus: Upgrading


Thursday 30th March 2023

Financials Focus: Millennium+

Join Millennium Consulting's Webinar Series, Financials Focus event on Millennium+.

Launched to the market in Q4 2022, Millennium+ offers tailored packages for Unit4 Financials by Coda customers.

Join this session to understand the extensive offering of Millennium+ services, the benefits and how to use our brand new Millennium+ calculator.

The session will answer:

  • What does Millennium+ provide?
  • Is Millennium+ a Help Desk?
  • Where do we operate?
  • What reporting is available?

Presented by Millennium’s Director of Professional Services, Chris Peall.

Thursday 23rd February 2023 at 14.00 p.m. UK for 30 minutes

Register here

N.B. this webinar will be hosted via Microsoft Teams, and you will receive a link to the session after registering. 

Chris Peall

Director of Professional Services at Millennium Consulting

Chris Peall oversees all projects & services and is the Product Owner of all Millennium IP.

Chris has over 20 years working across the industry in the Data Science, Business Analytics, Architecture and Project Management spaces. He ensures that you will have access to the most relevant and experienced members of the team to suit your needs, and that results are delivered in an expedient and professional manner.

Tailored packages to suit your Unit4 Financials needs.

Find out more

Financials Focus: Year End Process


Thursday 26th January 2023

Financials Focus: Millennium+


Thursday 23rd February 2023

Financials Focus: Upgrading


Thursday 30th March 2023

Financials Focus: Year End Process

Join Millennium Consulting's Webinar Series, Financials Focus event on Year End Process in Unit4 Financials

In this live demonstration we take a closer look at the Provisional Year End and Year End Undo functions, and the benefits these will bring to your reporting procedures.

The session will cover:

  • Provisional Year End function (probably the most popular new feature since the introduction of Continuous Release)
  • Full Year End Function
  • Undo Year End Function

This new functionality is only available to users who have upgraded to Unit4 Financials by Coda Continuous Release. Under this latest software version, users have a choice of two modes for running a year end: provisional or full. The new provisional mode gives finance officers a much greater degree of flexibility in the timing of their year end process.

Presented by Millennium’s Principal consultant, Phil Leaf.

Thursday 26th January 2023 at 14.00 p.m. UK for 30 minutes

Register here

N.B. this webinar will be hosted via Microsoft Teams, and you will receive a link to the session after registering. 

Phil Leaf

Systems Architect/Principal Consultant at Millennium Consulting

Phil is one of the world’s leading experts in the use of Unit4 Financials, with over 25 years of experience providing strategic advice, project management, implementation, and migration services for clients across the globe.

Did you know...

We are an Elite Unit4 Partner

We are an Elite Unit4 partner and a leading reseller around the world. That means we have the knowledge and experience to design, implement and support the right Unit4 Financials solution for your business. We also make it easy to extend your system, providing additional applications that allow you to augment and tailor your solution to more closely meet your needs.

Find out more

Financials Focus: Year End Process


Thursday 26th January 2023

Financials Focus: Millennium+


Thursday 23rd February 2023

Financials Focus: Upgrading


Thursday 30th March 2023

Building Cyber Resilience for 2023 and beyond

November 2022

Building Cyber Resilience for 2023 and beyond

A guide for business leaders

  • Cyber resilience defined
  • The current threat landscape
  • Barriers to resilience
  • Building resilience: steps to take

Read the white paper

There was a time when cyber was seen almost exclusively as an IT concern. These days, cyber security and risk management need to be viewed as a board-level issue, directly impacting finance, compliance, operations, customer relations – and indeed, every corner of the business.

The cyber security basics – measures such as systems protection, security infrastructure, user controls and safe data handling – are as crucial as ever. And as threat actors and their methods evolve, there will always be the need to ensure your cyber security toolkit is fit for purpose.

But alongside cyber security, it is also vital to focus on cyber resilience. This is the realisation that – try as you might – not every threat can be stopped and not every risk can be entirely mitigated. Resilience describes your ability to anticipate, prepare for, withstand, respond to and recover from whatever may be around the corner.

Read on to have a closer look at the need for resilience in the context of the current threat landscape, the barriers to it, and the steps required to build it.

Continue reading