Applications

Accounts Payable Automation

Blog: Kick-Start Your AP Automation Initiative with This Handy Check List

Automating accounts payable processes isn’t rocket science; these days the technologies, systems and practices to achieve a fast return on investment from AP automation is well-established and well documented.

The following list of questions/issues to consider early in the process will likely come up again and again as your explore the right options and best solution for your firm.

1. How are your AP Operations Structured (Centralized or Distributed)?

By now, the majority of organizations have consolidated their AP organization and have centralized operations. Industry research confirms that 90 percent of businesses today already maintain a centralized AP department–30 percent of which are organized in a shared-services environment.

Companies that choose to maintain distributed accounts payable operations for any number of reasons should consider ways to standardize systems, practices and policies to ensure visibility across the organization.

2. How long does it take to process an invoice?

The question of how long it takes to process an invoice should be followed by “How long do you think it SHOULD take?”

Industry studies have shown that process and technology laggards generally require 14-24 days or more to process an invoice. The average is 8 to 13 days. Best in class companies that rely on automation are able to reduce that time down to 1-7 days.

3. How Many Invoices Are Processed Per Full Time Employee (FTE)?

This assessment provides valuable insight into overall productivity of accounts payable and defines a company’s ability to scale its operations as the business grows. According to the Aberdeen Group, organizations with AP automation can process over 4 times as many invoices as those without automation.

4. What percentage of invoices are paper? What other channels do you rely on for invoice Receipt?

Paper is surprisingly prevalent for many firms—particularly when it comes to invoice receipt. According to the Institute of Financial Operations, nearly 80 percent of companies said that at least half of the invoices they receive are on paper.

Data entry mistakes, matching errors, duplicate or even disappearing invoices that result from manual processes drive up costs, cause confusion and create delays. Add to the equation the strategic decision-making implications of inaccurate accruals and the hidden costs of manual, paper-driven processes are too big to ignore.

  • Delivers easy-to-implement invoice data capture, approval routing and ERP integration with no need for coding or customization
  • Provides header/footer and line item detail data capture for key invoice/AP information
  • Ensures data validity through rules-based and ERP/ECM/CRM data cross-referencing
  • Automates 2- or 3-way AP matching and eliminates duplicate invoice entries
  • Eliminates approval bottlenecks through automated alerts and notifications

Thanks to intelligent capture solutions that can extract transaction information from paper invoices, along with digital files, companies can achieve high levels of efficiency, reliability and predictability, regardless of the media or channel by which they receive invoices—so long as they have a well-designed, automated process supported by the right technology.

5. How Many Invoices are PO-based?

According to the Institute of Financial Operations, most organizations report that half to three-quarters of their invoicing is PO-based, though this number varies by industry.

Due to the lack of visibility and spend control associated with non-PO invoices, many companies are finding ways to increase their percentage of PO invoices. Smart process application can automate the matching process for PO-based invoices, directing them to payment–or, following business rules to route and manage exceptions.

How Artsyl Can Help

Partnering with Artsyl allows you to:

  • Quickly transform your existing AP documents into intelligence to drive strategy. Our docAlpha Digital Transformation Platform delivers more accurate data, more quickly at a much lower cost.
  • Ensure data quality through automatic validation. Eliminate duplicate documents and data entry errors by relying on docAlpha to automatically cross-check invoice data against ERP vendor records.
  • Grow your business while cutting costs by automating routine tasks like AP invoice approvals. By automated AP invoice sorting/filing, routing/approval and data entry, you can easily scale your operations as business grows, without worrying about hiring and training new staff.

Learn More About Artsyl’s docAlpha Digital Transformation Platform and Smart Process Applications

docAlpha automates data extraction for any type of document

The docAlpha Digital Transformation Platform from Artsyl provides a foundation for smart process applications like InvoiceAction, which is focused specifically on AP invoice automation. With docAlpha, your organization can automate AP processes, then leverage that success to automate OTHER business processes.


Click here to learn more about docAlpha

The InvoiceAction Smart Process Application Makes it Easy to Get Started

InvoiceAction is a smart process application built on top of the docAlpha Digital Transformation Platform that allows AP teams to get up and running quickly and cost-effectively with a fully automated solution.

As a result, customers can quickly implement a solution to sort through thousands of invoices/purchase orders/etc. and capture relevant transaction data with a minimal amount of effort and no custom coding or services required.

  • Delivers easy-to-implement invoice data capture, approval routing and ERP integration with no need for coding or customization
  • Provides header/footer and line item detail data capture for key invoice/AP information
  • Ensures data validity through rules-based and ERP/ECM/CRM data cross-referencing
  • Automates 2- or 3-way AP matching and eliminates duplicate invoice entries
  • Eliminates approval bottlenecks through automated alerts and notifications.

To learn more about InvoiceAction, click here