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How can businesses with high invoice volume derive value from automation?

Published on 21 September 2021
Automated accounts payable solution
Sumitro Giri
Product Management Consultant

Sumitro Giri is a part of the Product Management team at Applexus. He has deep domain expertise across operations, supply-chain, manufacturing and analytics. Designing marketing strategies with a customer-centric approach, he accounts for the Product Management best practices in Applexus. He holds an MBA from Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore.

Large enterprises have complex requirements when it comes to financial processes and departments handling accounts payable (AP) work are mostly labour and paper intensive. Such complicated finance operations leave plenty of room for discrepancies accompanied by serious consequences. But it can be prevented by implementing intelligent automated accounts payable solution.

Deploying automated AP solutions offer many promising benefits for large organizations in terms of cost, time, and efficiency. Studies reveal that fully integrated automated accounts payable solution helps organizations cut processing time by 80%, reduce errors by up to 60%, and improve overall efficiency. Also, the global AP Automation Solution market is poised to reach USD 3.1 billion by 2024, at a CAGR of 11%.

In this blog, let’s explore some of the benefits of implementing AP automation solution for businesses with high invoice volume.

1. Reduce errors and frauds

Invoice errors and frauds are an ongoing challenge for organizations, especially those that process a huge number of invoices every month. Research done by Qvalia reveals that among the millions of purchase invoices analyzed, 25% were erroneous and incurred around $12M loss over the past one year. This is also the case with invoice frauds, as JP Morgan’s report on financial fraud states that 81% of companies encountered payments fraud attempts last year.

This emphasizes the need for an efficient exception handling solution for large businesses, a solution that is intelligent enough to identify the discrepancies automatically in an invoice with purchase orders, vendor details, item numbers, etc. An automated AP workflow embedded with optical character recognition technology can significantly reduce most of the manual errors while capturing the invoice details.

Leveraging Applexus Intelligent Data Extraction and Recognition (AIDER) technology, InSITE is helping organizations eliminate manual errors in AP processing. InSITE’s configurable smart business rules and data enrichment, ensure minimum invoice errors.

2. Automated Invoice Classification

PO Invoices, Non-PO Invoices, employee expense bills, credit memos and lease invoices are some of the different types of documents entering into the AP cycle from various vendors. It is time-consuming to sort the invoices coming through multiple channels and route them to the correct workflow.  Adopting a robust AP automation strategy can eliminate complex, labour-intensive document sorting, save time, and reduce employee frustration.

Therefore, organizations require an intelligent AP solution driven by defined business rules to categorize the types of documents. Understanding the need, InSITE combined Optical Character Recognition, Natural Language Processing, and machine learning capabilities to classify the documents and navigate invoices to appropriate approval points and eliminate the workflow bottlenecks.

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3. Faster account payable processes

It is challenging for large enterprises to fast-track vendor invoice processing even with ample resources. The huge volume of invoices and the time delay for manually capturing data, resolving errors, validating & approving invoices slow down the entire cycle. Organizations lose a lot of time & money by embracing manual or semi-automated AP automation solution.

Easy approval and workflow configuration automates the flow of invoices and enables users to get a unified view of their pending tasks. Moreover, incorporation of AI/ML deployed in invoice automation process also expedites the extraction through OCR. InSITE’s AI/ML enabled extraction and recognition engine empowers the Accounts Payable team to record invoice details with minimum manual intervention. It also self-learns from new invoice templates to expedite extraction and recognition of invoice details from the next occurrence.

4. High accessibility and mobility

In this pandemic era where working from home is increasingly becoming a trend, large businesses need infrastructure that supports seamless collaboration with remotely working teams. However, organizations that embraced manual and on-premise AP systems were unable to explore the possibilities of mobile work accessibility efficiently. Since it requires hands-on involvement, many AP departments had to stop their operations for a while.

Employing a cloud-based AP automation solution helps AP departments, approvers, and management streamline workflows remotely. As they can access and manage approvals, exceptions, disputes, and answer supplier questions from anywhere through the cloud, smart AP systems enable organizations to run effortlessly throughout the pandemic period. In addition, the real-time accounts payable auditing capabilities give enterprises the confidence to ensure compliance across their operations. With cloud architecture and an intuitive UI, InSITE enables users to access the software irrespective of their geographical location or devices, with minimal training.

To conclude, automated intelligent accounts payable solutions are an excellent value-add to large businesses seeking higher efficiency and accuracy with reduced cycle times for accounts payable workflows. But its advantages are not simply confined to the ones mentioned here. Organizations can extend the benefits in many other ways, like minimizing accounts payable operational expenses in enterprise finance processes & ensuring compliance policies.

As a proven value driver, InSITE offers a holistic accounts payable solution for your invoice payment functions. With frontend based on the SAP Fiori platform, InSITE ensures end-to-end streamlined AP operations with advanced capabilities for processing vendor invoices, reporting and analytics. Reach out to Applexus to know more about how InSITE can transform your vendor invoice processing and help you to realize better ROI.

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