During the second half of 2022, Crown Agents payment performance deterioriated, and a number of invoices were not paid within the target times we set ourselves.
In the final quarter of 2022 Crown Agents suffered from a combination of long term staff illnesses, staff turnover, and an increase in workload due to emergency procurement in Ukraine. This has resulted in a back log in invoice processing which has impacted our payment performance statistics.
We are addressing the issue with strong recruitment and we have surged in staff to ensure we can cope with the increased volume of invoices.
In the medium term, we will be upgrading our finance systems and processes.
From 1 July 2023 we will be going live with a new system, which includes automated accounts payable workflow management, which will greatly improve our ability to track invoices across the business.The Board of Crown Agents are closely monitoring payment performance, and we anticipate our payment performance improving strongly during 2023.