Top 8 Lessons of 2020
2020 has been a year like no other, but with every trial comes the ability to learn and grow! Here are the top 8 lessons of 2020 for accounts payable.
1. It’s possible to do accounts payable work remotely
Accounts payable has traditionally been thought of as an in-office department where people are often surrounded by stacks of paper. This year, however, AP learned that their work could be done from home. The easiest way for remote work to be possible, of course, is through automation.
Not only does automation make your AP department lightning fast, but it puts the entire process from purchase order to payment at any approved employee’s fingertips. No need for paper filing or scanning documents, minimal need for data input, and far less phone time – AP automation allows for the easiest transition to remote work by allowing you to work from anywhere.
2. Having a relationship with your suppliers makes the process smoother
Everyone wants to have a good relationship with their suppliers. By switching to a free, high-level supplier portal, with features like invoice status visibility and dynamic discounting, your communication and relationship with your suppliers improves and everyone can work more efficiently. Having a good relationship with your suppliers leads to more open communication, which helps when times get hard.
3. The faster and more smoothly an invoice can be processed, the better.
The faster and more smoothly an invoice can be processed, the easier your job will be! By utilizing an automated solution, your department could see a reduction in invoice-to-payment turnaround time from a few weeks to a few days.
4. Speed means nothing if it’s not accurate
While being fast can be a good thing, and invoices absolutely should be processed quickly, the focus should be on accuracy. Fast processes are great, but they’re worthless if your invoices and subsequent payments are inaccurate.
5. Sending invoices and payments through the mail causes delays and problems
This year we saw that major delays can affect postal services. In this day and age, enterprise-level businesses should no longer be relying on slow mail, as it leads to numerous problems, especially when delays occur.
6. The less you physically handle an invoice, the better
There are a lot of downsides to physical invoices. Not only is it more likely to get lost at the bottom of a stack of papers, but there are some major privacy issues with paper invoices. You never know who has seen the invoice, can’t track who made what changes and when, and it’s even harder to track fraudulent activities.
7. Use all the technological tools in your arsenal – and if you don’t have any, then get some!
Just about every company has some aspect of automation readily available to them, even if you don’t realize it. If you have access to internet, you can switch your invoicing system from paper to email. If you already are utilizing email, then maybe investigate OCR or imaging, which will only speed your process up more. Utilize your tools!
8. Automating your entire process can take time now, but it is worth it
While switching to automation takes time, it costs more time and money to not automate. You will save time, labor, and become much more efficient as soon as you’re automated, saving your processes time for months after you’ve finished your initial automating process.
While 2020 was tough, we at iPayables are excited to see what the next year has in store for us. We can’t wait to help take your automation to the next level by taking advantage of the top 8 lessons from 2020.