How do I automate accounts payable?
The most critical tool you’ll need for automating your accounts payable is a software solution that can handle your current and future AP needs. A hosted platform also allows for greater collaboration and accountability as well as improved security and reporting, all of which results in a dramatic increase in ROI. AP automation also cuts invoice processing time in half, refocuses manpower and time previously spent on manual data input, eliminates mistakes, ensures on-time payments, improves working capital management, and optimises performance.
An Accounts Payable solution streamlines every action the AP department performs. Whether you’re purchasing a product or service from a vendor or approving and paying invoices, there are several benefits of payables workflow automation, including higher productivity and morale and lower invoice processing costs.
Where do I start?
Identifying and understanding your current process is the critical first step you must take when you’re beginning any implementation project; after all, if you don’t know where you are, how can you figure out where you want to go and what you need to get there? Some of the questions you’ll want to answer before implementing an AP Automation solution include:
– How many invoices do we process per month?
– What formats are bills that we receive?
– Where do our invoices come from?
Articulating your goals and defining the ideal outcomes of implementing your automation solution is another important step to take very early in the process. Part of this step involves quantifying key metrics in your current processes; these include values such as the actual cost of processing a single invoice, the amount of time your team spends performing manual, repetitive tasks, the amount of late fees you accumulate each reporting period, and the number of early payment discount opportunities you’ve missed along with the reasons why they weren’t collected.
After you’ve implemented your automation solution, and even during the implementation process, there are still additional opportunities available to make your process improvements even more efficient and increase your returns.
We will help you build a business case to present to your management along with the benefits in the next article.
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