Source: Sargent-Disc

Accounts payable is currently a significant drain on production accountants’ time. New for 2024, Sargent-Disc (a Cast & Crew company) is introducing cutting-edge artificial intelligence (AI) technology into the Digital Purchase Order (DPO) application, reducing the need for manual data entry and revolutionising the efficiency of production accounting teams.

Thanks to this new AP Automation capability, invoices received by email are now analysed and processed by DPO using AI. DPO helps by matching invoices to purchase orders, simplifying this previously time-consuming paper-based task. Needing only to verify the information allows the production accountant more time to focus on other important work.

DPO is also integrated directly with PSL+, Cast & Crew’s production accounting software, further streamlining the entire procurement. Workflow, chart of accounts, POs, vendors and invoices are all synchronised securely when working remotely on set or in the office.

Nurturing talent

The Sargent-Disc Production Management Scholarship and John Sargent Production Accountant Scholarship will once again support National Film and Television School (NFTS) students with financial assistance and mentoring. Twenty-three students have benefited since 2013, continuing the legacy begun by company co-founder the late John Sargent, who worked closely with NFTS since its inception and was instrumental in shaping its Production Management and Production Accounting curriculums. Sargent-Disc also supports the London Film School Graduate Showcase, providing a platform for around 150 graduates each year as they embark on their careers.

Championing success 

Sargent-Disc has been a Major Patron of the Royal Television Society (RTS) since 2015. Last year, parent company Cast & Crew took this partnership to a new level, signing a headline sponsorship deal for the RTS Programme Awards 2024. This continues Sargent-Disc’s track record of investing in industry talent recognition — it has been official sponsor of the Edinburgh TV Awards since 2022 and also supports the Broadcast Awards and the Production Guild of Great Britain (PGGB) Awards. 

Supporting sustainability

An official BAFTA albert partner since 2018, Sargent-Disc was the first to sponsor albert’s educational programme that spread its messaging to a wider audience. The company has thrown its weight behind albert’s work to reduce the carbon footprint of UK film and TV, backing the launch of tools including Planet Placement (2019) and the improved carbon calculator and certification toolkit (2021). A carbon-neutral company powered by 100% renewable energy, Sargent-Disc works hard to raise awareness of Digital Production Office®’s carbon-saving paperless solutions. 

Connecting & influencing 

This year will see Sargent-Disc host its ninth International Producers Reception at Cannes Film Festival, connecting producers and financiers from across the globe, and it will also continue its support for the annual Women in Film & Television (WFTV) Brunch. In 2022, the company — which has a more than 60% female workforce — became a WFTV Corporate Member as part of its mission to increase awareness of opportunities for women in entertainment industry finance. 

As a PACT member, RTS major patron and PGGB business partner, Sargent-Disc works closely with the UK’s leading networks, sharing knowledge about challenges and opportunities in the field of production accounting.

Researching & developing

For more than 35 years, Sargent-Disc’s commitment to R&D has seen it keep pace with digital innovations that raise the bar for entertainment industry finance. “At every stage over the years, they always seem to have been at the forefront in terms of developing what they’ve got,” says Kevin Trehy, Executive VP Physical Production, Warner Bros. “There’s never been a sense of sitting back and being complacent, it’s always been looking at how can we evolve the company to be of more help to the industry. And I think they’ve always got that right.” 

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