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Meet Centreviews CEO, Gary Halleen

Centreviews CEO, Gary Hallen

Posted on September 19, 2017 by Liang McIntosh-Yee

With a career that spans over four decades, Centreviews CEO Gary Halleen has seen the many dramatic improvements technology has brought to the office environment. Today, Halleen helps make those changes a reality for businesses across the globe by providing solutions that automate accounting, reduce costly errors, improve productivity and increase working capital.

Halleen’s career in technology began during his time in the U.S. Navy, where he was trained in advanced electronics. He parlayed that experience and a degree in Electrical Engineering into a position as product development manager for 3M, a leader in technology solutions.

In this position, Halleen was part of a group known as the “Office of the Future,” which included 3M’s technology brain trust at the time. Once each month, this group would meet and come up with ways that back office processes could be automated. This work was an early-stage version of the today’s automation that became affordable and widely used in business due to advances in technology.

Com Squared Systems

After leaving 3M, Halleen founded Com Squared Systems, a company that developed software and hardware to replace paper-based systems. Instead of shuffling papers from one employee to another, Com Squared Systems’ solution, Unisearch, allowed businesses to send computer output to the Unisearch system to be stored on an optical disk.

Paper was also scanned and added as images to be stored electronically rather than in file cabinets, freeing up office space, improving retrievals and reducing lost paperwork.

Paper was also scanned and added as images to be stored electronically rather than in file cabinets, freeing up office space, improving retrievals and reducing lost paperwork.

One of the things Halleen discovered while building Com Squared into a national company was that the back office in companies were struggling to automate due to the lack of capital funds to buy hardware and software. Compounding the problem was that companies also lacked the technical resources to implement the solutions.

API Outsourcing

In 1998, Halleen founded API Outsourcing (API) based on the trend to outsource more functions of a company and the idea of API owning the software and hardware to provide the automation to the accounting departments in the back offices of companies on a transaction basis.

This eliminated the problem of no capital resources and also solved the problem of needing technical resources to implement a technology solution.

The transaction-based solution became possible because of the internet. This delivery mechanism eventually became known as the cloud. Businesses also started using Adobe to create and view PDFs and emailing them. This made them more comfortable with the use of electronic documents technology.

The elimination of the upfront investments in technology and its acceptance, reduced the risks of implementing new technology, which made it easier for Halleen and API to convince companies to take the next step in office automation. API also provided all the labor necessary to enable companies to fully outsource their back office.

Centreviews

In 2014, Halleen saw a new trend where some companies did not want to outsource their accounting labor but did want the automation software. API Outsourcing addressed this by offering the automation software that had been developed to support their outsourcing work by splitting out the software and offering it as a SaaS (Software as a Service) offering. The SaaS was branded as

The SaaS was branded as the, “Centreviews Business Intelligence Suite”. Businesses were already beginning to embrace cloud solutions. Centreviews core market was middle market ($50 million to $1 billion in revenue) businesses.

In this market, business want a full end-to-end solution that can meet all of their needs rather than working with many different vendors because of the lack of internal resources to manage multiple vendors.

Halleen and the leadership team addressed this end-to-end solution need by on partnering with payment providers, factoring companies purchasing/catalog systems to add all the functionality to provide businesses everything they need to manage their back-office operations.

Customer needs and technologies are ever changing and to continue to keep Centreviews on the leading edge, it’s focusing on future technologies, including robotic process automation (RPA), which uses machine learning to provide advanced services to businesses such as extraction of remittance data from websites, matching payment information with remittances and invoices and eliminating manual data entry.

Halleen has found that many businesses are now welcoming the millennial generation, which fully embraces technology and automation. As a result, businesses are now even more open to the next wave of technology that will help make their work easier.

Although Halleen can’t predict what the future will bring, he knows technology changes at a more rapid pace every year. To keep up, businesses need to invest in solutions that will offer the latest innovations.

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