Myths about Automation in Accounts Payable

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It can be scary to think about making the switch from paper invoicing to full AP automation – questions might be swirling around in your head, preventing you from getting started with the process. If this is you or your company, this article is for you. We’ve compiled three common myths about AP automation and their realities.

Myth #1: Automation takes control away from the AP Department

The amount of control that your AP department has depends on the type of automation that you choose. One of the main goals of accounts payable automation is to increase the amount of control that AP teams have over their invoicing process. By using a free supplier portal that comes with high-level automation solutions, the AP department has full control and visibility – invoices are routed automatically to the correct people for approval and the AP department knows where every invoice is. The next steps are plainly laid out for the AP department to follow, to make sure that payments are finalized.

Other forms of automation, such as purchasing or outsourced data entry, take control away from the AP department. Accounts payable is responsible for invoices, and giving that control to an outside source can cause blind spots in the process, which can ultimately complicate the process while taking control away from AP.

Myth #2: AP automation is expensive

While AP automation is not free, it ultimately saves your department and company significant money. Accounts payable automation eliminates costs from delayed invoices, difficult audits, and saves your company time. Additionally, you can set up early pay discounting with your suppliers, saving your company even more money per invoice. Most companies pay around $3-$6 per invoice, which adds up to thousands of dollars a month that you could be saving by switching to AP automation. iPayables’ solution often gets our customers below $1 per invoice.

If the automation solution you are looking at right now costs more than what you’re currently paying, then odds are that you aren’t looking at the right solution for you. Some companies focus on small businesses, while others focus on enterprise level companies. But remember there is no such thing as too big or too small of a company when it comes to full automation.

Myth #3: Paper invoicing is more secure than e-invoicing

E-invoicing and full automation are astronomically more secure than paper invoices. First, automation is completely reliable. Invoices are automatically saved while being worked on, so your progress will never be lost. Invoices can’t be misplaced beneath a stack of papers somewhere on your neighbor’s desk – you can search and find your invoice where it is securely stored on the cloud.

Additionally, full automation secures your invoices so that only authorized users can access the invoice and the information that is on it. Full automation tracks exactly who has viewed what invoice, records changes that were made at what time. This allows electronic invoicing to be compliant and secure in a way that paper invoicing can’t be.

Myths about automation stem from the fact that automation is new and different, but it’s the kind of new and different you should be looking for. Enterprise-level automation will only serve to increase your control, security, and visibility, all while saving you time and money.

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