Business agility is all the rage these days. But the invoice approval process in most accounts payable (AP) departments is anything but fast.
Most AP departments waste lots of time on manual tasks such as:
- Document routing
- Exceptions resolution
- Filing and retrieving invoices
- Responding to supplier inquiries
- Keying data into an ERP
- Creating Excel reports
- Looking for misplaced documents
Complicating matters, most AP managers have no visibility into their department’s invoice approval processes, making it nearly impossible to ensure operational efficiency and effectiveness.
4 Ways Accounts Payable Workflow Solutions Accelerate Invoice Approval
Accounts payable workflow solutions enable invoice approval processes to move at the speed of business.
There are four ways that accounts payable workflow solutions accelerate invoice approval:
1. Electronic routing
- Accounts payable workflow solutions match invoices against purchase order data that resides in an ERP or other system of record. Unmatched invoices are digitally routed to the appropriate individual based on pre-defined business rules such as the priority of an invoice (e.g. an invoice from a key supplier). Accounts payable workflow solutions eliminate the possibility that invoices will be sent to the wrong individual. Invoices also cannot become “stuck” in an approval queue. Approvers are alerted of invoices awaiting their decision. Approvers also receive reminders to act on an invoice. Invoices approaching their due date are escalated.
2. Automated exceptions resolution
- Accounts payable workflow solutions eliminate the weeks of back-and-forth e-mails and phone calls required to resolve exceptions. Any invoices with incomplete or inaccurate data are automatically sent back to the supplier for correction and resubmission.
3. Real-time monitoring
- Accounts payable workflow solutions provide real-time monitoring of the status of invoices. With this visibility, managers can proactively address bottlenecks, reallocate staff to tasks that require additional resources and avoid missed deadlines. An online self-service portal enables suppliers to instantly view the status of invoices and payments.
4. Seamless integration
- Accounts payable workflow solutions integrate with ERP applications and other systems of record, ensuring that information on approved invoices is delivered downstream as quickly as possible. Integrating an accounts payable workflow solution with an ERP or other system of record also provides decision-makers with instant access to all the information related to a supplier or an invoice. Data is indexed, cross-referenced and well organized.
Accounts payable workflow solutions eliminate the friction in invoice approvals that hold businesses back.
Eliminating friction enables AP departments to avoid late-payment fees, capture more early pay discounts, reduce supplier calls, and get better visibility into their working capital and spending.
Is your AP department considering deploying an accounts payable workflow solution?
Reduce your costs with an AP workflow solution, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more!