australian benchmark initiative

Finance benchmarks and better practice

Code of Conduct

The following Code of Conduct has been established to define the relationships, roles and expectations in relation to the Australian Benchmark Initiative.


"participant" - the legal entity that agrees to participate in the benchmarking study.  References to "you" or "your" are to be read as references to the participant.

"ABI"- is the Australian Benchmark Initiative Pty Ltd, a private company incorporated in NSW with ACN 152 339 305.  References to "we", "our", and "us" are to be read as references to ABI.

"Sponsor" - is optim2 (optim2 Pty Ltd) and optiBPO (optiBPO Pty Ltd)

1.       Objective

The objective of ABI is to build a set of Finance benchmarks and facilitate the sharing of Finance better practice between Australian companies. 

2.       Roles

There are four key roles in relation to the Australian Benchmarking Initiative:


The role of ABI is to lead the process for the benchmark study, including data collection, collation, analysis, and production of a detailed report.  This includes conducting the survey, and responsibility for security of the data and information provided by the Participants. 


The role of the participant is to provide data that is complete and accurate to the best of their knowledge, and in a timely manner to support the deadlines of the study.


The role of the Sponsors is to provide funding and resources to support the benchmarking study.

3.       Data collection

Collection of information will be conducted through a detailed questionnaire provided to participants.  Where required, ABI representatives may speak directly with participants to validate and clarify any information provided.

 4.       Confidentiality

ABI acknowledges that it may receive or come into contact with confidential information during the performance of the study. As required by law, regulation or regulatory authorities, ABI agrees to hold such information in confidence.

 ABI shall be entitled to retain a file copy of such confidential information provided that it will maintain the information in a secure and confidential manner.

 5.       Use of data

Any data collected will only be shared at an aggregate level, and all data will be masked such that individual participants cannot be identified. 

Any process data provided by participants will only be used for the purposes of the benchmark study (including associated report publication).  Participants will be asked to "opt in" to receive material with relevant updates, including invitations to similar events on Finance better practice.

 6.       Deletion of data

If at any point a participant requests for their data to be removed from the study, the participant should inform ABI in writing, and ABI will immediately delete the data and advise the participant that this is the case.

 7.       Distribution of report

Participants agree not to republish or redistribute any report produced by ABI in any format outside of their organisation.  Participants may make reference to the study, so long as any reference is appropriately acknowledged.

Benchmark metrics

Along with a range of qualitative information in relation to process attributes, a range of metrics are collected and analysed.   The Australian Benchmark Initiative has attempted to choose a straightforward set of metrics that would be easily understood across the broad range of participants.

For each metric quartile measures will be provided (bottom, median, top) for the following:

Purchase to Pay

1. Full Time Equivalents (FTEs)
2. Average gross salary
3. Invoices processed per FTE
4. Purchase Order penetration
5. Purchase Orders after the event (%)
6. Matching tolerance ($ and %)
7. Payment cycles (#)
8. Standard payment terms


1. Full Time Equivalents (FTEs)
2. Average gross salary
3. Payruns per pay cycle type

4. Headcount processed per pay cycle
5. Timesheets processed per pay cycle
6. Percentage of "out of cycle" payments


1. Full Time Equivalents (FTEs)
2. Average gross salary
3. Active customer accounts managed per FTE
4. Days Sales Outstanding (DSO)

5. Percentage of debtors > 60 days
6. Remittances processed per FTE
7. Payment types (electronic/cash)
8. Standard trading terms

Chartered Magazine article

Chartered Magazine, in their April 2014 edition ran an article on the Australian Benchmark Initiative.   That article can be downloaded here.