Accounts Payable Automation is the compass of an accounts payable department, resulting from cloud solutions that help keep an organization efficient and productive. The result has been improved decision-making and business forecasting. Clearly, the future is in the cloud.

When using cloud-based AP Automation, copies of the company’s EIPP files are transmitted to a data server, allowing users to access those files via a website portal. Those files can then be accessed from numerous locations. They can also be accessed using a tablet or a smartphone. This offers additional convenience and flexibility for all involved in many of the financial departments of a company, whether it is a small start-up or a major corporation.

There are a number of challenges that many companies are currently dealing with when it comes to improving their Electronic Invoicing process. Basically, those challenges haven’t changed very much over the years. But, now there are two major areas where AP Automation can be effective in a very big way.

AP Automation can be tied directly into analytical/data reports, as well as treasury risk management. Better Accounts Payable Automation is easily achievable via the insight that these reports can provide, resulting in projections of operational expenses and more accuracy in forecasting cash flow. Organizations that are using E-invoicing, are more likely to have fully integrated solutions for handling all of their financial needs.

More effective cash management requires real-time data. Available data and analytics quality is paramount in making financial decisions for companies of all sizes. Companies that use cloud solutions tend to be more likely to possess real-time visibility regarding their cash situation than those that don’t. In addition this can ensure the accuracy of their data while also making it more likely that those companies are successful at applying that capability.

Improvements in information management using EIPP can be achieved along with a reduction in manual processing, which can streamline any company by the freeing up of resources that can better serve other functions within the organization.

Another benefit of E-invoicing and AP Automation, is the green factor. In an age when everyone is trying to make their offices greener to ensure the future of our environment, cloud-based systems can create a major reduction in paper use.

Other areas that can be greatly improved using Electronic Invoicing include matching purchase orders to invoices, transaction audit histories, and electronic workflow.

To date, treasury and finance departments have appeared to be slower than other departments when it comes to adopting new technologies that are cloud-based. One reason seems to be security concerns, but those concerns have turned out to be unfounded. Using other processes, like the outdated use of spreadsheets, limit the sharing of knowledge between financial departments, whereas AP Automation can ensure that knowledge sharing is maximized.