After your incoming invoices have been captured within your AP department, the next step in the Capture. Manage. Automate.™ process, is to put these invoices to work through automation.
Before you can begin to automate your AP process you must have a thorough understanding of the entire AP process. Working with an experienced service provider, such as Polar Imaging, will make the process far less overwhelming.
What processes can I automate?
Once an invoice is received most processes require that the information be matched up with a purchase order and/or any receiving documents. Two-way and three-way matching is a common step to automate. An AP automation solution can check to make sure the invoice matches the information on the relevant documents. If the information does not match or is beyond a set variance, that invoice is red flagged and human intervention is required for further processing.
GL coding can also be automated based on pre-set, customizable rules. You can set a particular GL code based on the vendor name or type. If a new invoice is processed and the AP automation solution cannot identify which GL code to use, rules can be set to either flag the invoice or process without coding.
Workflow automation rules can also be set throughout the AP process. If all vendor invoices between A-L are processed by a particular AP clerk, then rules can be set to automate the routing of these invoices to the appropriate staff. Another example of automated routing would be if any invoice over $10,000 requires CFO approval.
These are just common examples of what can be automated. Anything that is logical and consistent can be automated.
What benefits can I expect?
There are many benefits to automating your AP process, here are a few:
- Shorten processing times;
- Process more invoices without hiring more staff;
- Reduce repetitive manual processes;
- Eliminate duplicate payments;
- Reduces the likelihood of paying the wrong vendor;
- Complete visibility and audit trails;
- Reduce late fees and interest penalties;
- Maximize vendor discounts!
AP automation is not meant to replace employees, it is meant to make their job easier. Shorter processing times and reduced errors will save money and free up time. This will allow your AP department to spend more time capturing vendor discounts, increasing the company’s bottom line.
With automated processes in place, you can stop wasting money and start making money!
If you would like to learn more about we can help you automate all or part of your AP department, then give us a call or send us an email.
Read part three in this blog series: Capture. Manage. Automate.™ How it applies to Accounts Payable. Part 3: Manage