Times like these can put our happiness to the test.
- Group dynamics are upset
- Processes and procedures are changed
- The workday is longer and riddled with new challenges
- Established lines of communication are disrupted
- Nerves are frayed as the recession continues
As accounts payable (AP) leaders have hurriedly set up new ways of operating, the happiness of their staff and of their internal and external stakeholders may have been the furthest thing from their mind.
But remote working is here to stay. And over the long haul, AP leaders will have to find ways of doing things that not only are functional, but also make the people they lead and serve happier.
Fortunately, the best AP automation solutions do just that.
Here are five ways that the best AP automation solutions can increase happiness:
1. Happier staff.
No one likes the drudgery of manual invoice processing. This goes double for millennials. The best AP automation solutions create a digital workplace where invoice processing is simplified and automated and workers can focus on fulfilling tasks such as data analysis, building supplier relationships, and collaborating with stakeholders. And the best AP automation solutions allow for effortless invoice processing and instant collaboration among coworkers and internal and external stakeholders, no matter where staff work.
2. Happier suppliers.
The best AP automation solutions help you shine with suppliers. Pay suppliers accurately and on-time, every time. Make it easy for suppliers to provide the information you need to resolve invoice exceptions and keep payments on track. Empower suppliers to check on the status of invoices or submit documents when and where they want. And get suppliers cash fast through electronic payments and early payment discount options.
3. Happier finance executives.
Ensuring the financial health of the business puts a lot of weight on the shoulders of senior finance executives. The best AP automation solutions give execs peace of mind by putting smart cash controls at their fingertips. Graphical dashboards provide real-time visibility into critical cash flow and spend metrics. ERP integration offers 360-degree visibility into supplier relationships. Drilling down into data helps execs uncover the cause of financial trends. Mobile access delivers insights when and where execs need them. And ad hoc reports let execs slice and dice data to create actionable financial plans.
4. Happier stakeholders.
Stakeholders across the enterprise count on AP to give them the insights they require to make decisions. Consider procurement, which needs to know what purchasers are buying and who they are buying it from. The business intelligence tools built into the best AP automation solutions deliver instant access to critical metrics such as spend by supplier, spend by category or general ledger code, and spend by unit or purchaser.
5. Happier auditors.
The best AP automation solutions provide the controls that auditors crave. Configurable workflow routing. Segregation of duties. Chain of custody assurance. Data encryption. Logging of all actions taken on an invoice. Automated data retention. And the reporting provided by the best AP automation solutions accelerates the financial close.
There is no question that an automated AP department is a happy AP department.
But the greatest joy of all may be when finance leaders realize that they can make everyone happier and achieve a tremendous return on investment (ROI) from the automation solution in the process.
Ready to bring happiness to your AP process?
Contact IPS to arrange a online demonstration of one of the best AP automation solutions.