Invoice Management: New Opportunities Through AP Automation
Over the last two years, the workforce has seen burnout across departments become more and more of a reality. The accounts payable department is no exception. In fact, manual and low-level accounts payable departments face an even higher risk of burnout with the monotonous invoice management that must be done by staff. Many departments are finding that younger people entering the workforce are not willing to do such tedious tasks that could (and should) be automated.
Enterprise-level accounts payable automation is one of the best ways to combat burnout and revitalize the workplace for the AP department. With invoice management being automated, accounts payable staff can shift their focus to more mentally stimulating and meaningful tasks. With the menial, annoying tasks being taken care of by accounts payable automation, the AP department becomes a more enjoyable place to work, where AP staff can focus on the big picture for their department.
Focus on Discount Capture
With automated invoice management, accounts payable staff will be able to take advantage of more discounts from suppliers. Dynamic discounting is usually offered through enterprise-level automation solutions, so AP is able to receive discounts on their invoices if they are paid early. Thanks to high-level invoice management expediting the invoice process, many discount opportunities open up between accounts payable and suppliers.
Improve Supplier Relationships
Along with paying suppliers earlier, automated invoice management paves the way for healthier supplier relationships. With high-level automation, invoice feedback is handled directly on the invoice. These communications are tracked and recorded permanently, so AP can go back and review the interactions if needed. With more time available to focus on communications and paying invoices early, accounts payable is bound to see supplier relationships greatly improve.
Comprehensive automated invoice management typically includes in-depth reporting abilities. With detailed reporting, accounts payable can see and analyze where exactly money is being spent by the company. AP is then able to report this information back to various executives and department heads. From there, they can discuss the possibility of refocusing their spending.
Accounts payable employees will be able to better monitor fraud when they aren’t stuck managing a huge number of invoices manually. Additionally, enterprise-level automation systems will flag duplicate invoices and notify AP. Two- and three-way PO matching also ensures you’re only paying for what you ordered/received. If an invoice doesn’t look right, issues are able to be raised on an invoice before processing payment.
Enjoying Accounts Payable
With invoice management being automated, staff no longer has to waste time on:
- Manually keying in invoices
- Dealing with paper
- Handling mass amounts of supplier inquiries
- Managing late fees, etc.
While accounts payable automation handles the monotonous parts of invoice management, AP staff can actually begin to enjoy their day-to-day jobs and focus more on value-add tasks.