Royal Philips Moves eInvoicing to the Cloud and Reduces Maintenance Costs 80 Percent

November 29, 2017 Alex Forbes




Royal Philips eliminated unnecessary manual infrastructure maintenance and improved its reporting process by implementing the Sovos eInvoice solution for NF-e business-to-government reporting.


Business Challenges

  • Philips had over 140 legacy systems, which created a massive support burden and used substantial internal resources. 
  • The company’s existing on-premise platform was due for a significant upgrade to process impending NF-e.



Sovos eInvoice replaced the outdated on-premise solution, eliminating the need to manually maintain infrastructure requirements.



  • Philips saw an 80 percent reduction in maintenance costs and a 25 percent increase in employee productivity. 
  • The company also enjoyed automation in its reporting processes, cutting down on necessary internal resources devoted to reporting.


The Company


Royal Philips of the Netherlands focuses on improving people’s lives through meaningful innovation in the healthcare, consumer lifestyle and lighting segments. Headquartered in Amsterdam, the company is a leader in cardiac care, acute care and home healthcare; energy efficient lighting solutions and new lighting applications; male shaving and grooming; and oral healthcare.  


The Challenge

Philips’ global architecture and IT department are dedicated to providing innovation and support services to various business units throughout Brazil. However, its technology was already showing signs of obsolescence and creating a support burden as Philips’ 140+ legacy systems required extensive labor to complete routine annual maintenance. The problem was further compounded when Philips’ then-current on-premise system required an upgrade. 


The Solution

Philips either needed to substantially upgrade its existing system to issue e-invoices (NF-e) and keep its infrastructure intact, or find a SaaS solution that could perform the necessary processes more efficiently. The company analyzed the market and realized it needed to break away from its outdated practices.


“Our biggest challenge was that Philips had a global IT architecture
and strategy based on our ERP platform...the international team
not only approved the adoption of the [Sovos] system;
the solution became part of the overall architecture strategy.”

- Alexander Quinze, CIO & Head of Operational Excellence at Royal Philips


Why Sovos for eInvoicing?


After a competitive selection process that included four different vendors, Philips chose the Sovos eInvoice regional platform. The company found solace in Sovos’ ability to automate its reporting processes and eliminate its need to manually perform maintenance on a complex system.


The project was divided into two phases: The issuance of NF-e was the first priority, while implementation across the organization occurred gradually over the course of three months. 



The Benefits


By implementing Sovos eInvoice, Philips saw an 80 percent reduction in maintenance costs, since it was no longer responsible for infrastructure management. The company was also able to free up internal resources from the tedious reporting process.


The Results


Philips has achieved a 25 percent increase in productivity among employees across all business units of the Brazilian multinational due to the Sovos platform’s availability and reliability. The migration process was smooth and had no impact on users’ daily routines, and ongoing operations are backed by an enterprise support team with a Service Level Agreement (SLA) of 99.9 percent.

Because of the product’s unprecedented nature, Philips’ corporate IT team extensively audited the Sovos solution. The teams only required a small change in the final architecture — due to a company-specific security requirement — in the aftermath of the evaluation. The successful implementation in Brazil has opened up opportunities for Philips to deploy the solution in other Latin American countries in which it operates.


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