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Achieve Automated Invoice Processing with Enterprise Content Management

Bill Dermody
05/25/2021
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Digitizing your workflows is a big deal: it changes the way your colleagues work, and everyone involved needs to get used to a new way of doing things. But in today’s digital world, especially post-COVID-19, the bigger question is can you afford to stick with paper invoicing?

Cash flow makes or breaks a business. If you can’t process invoices fast and efficiently, your business is not going to thrive. Not only that, but slow, inefficient processes are costing you money.

A study from the Aberdeen Group found that companies that used software to automate processes spent just $3.09 to process an invoice. In contrast, companies that had no solutions in place were spending an average of $38.77. Automation means a business can provide approvals, move invoices and get work done with fewer steps, while maintaining social distancing.

WHY AUTOMATE?

Is your accounting department being held back by paper-based processes? With information arriving as incoming mail, PDFs, email attachments and more, time consuming manual invoice processing requires these documents to be identified, sorted, and routed to the appropriate person. Doing so manually increases labor costs and often leads to delays in invoice payment.

Automation can make sure purchase orders are signed, records are archived, and employee vacation requests are approved with minimal human intervention. With intelligent routing, an Enterprise Content Management (ECM) system will create the necessary steps of review and approval, in the order specified. And as more and more workers are maintaining social distancing or working remotely, the end result is processes that are secure, cost-efficient, streamlined and error-free.

For your Accounts Receivable and Accounts Payable departments, automation can not only be a time saver, but a profitable investment. ECM software can deliver data to your existing accounting system, further boosting productivity by eliminating repetitive data entry. Best of all, real-time audit trails of invoice status allow management teams to maximize on early payment discounts.

HOW TO AUTOMATE

For accounting departments, every new incoming document needs to be identified, sorted, and routed. Unfortunately, manually reviewing and keying document data is prone to keystroke errors and a high risk of inaccurate information distribution. Luckily, manual data entry can be replaced with document capture automation. The result? Quicker invoice turnaround, reduced labor costs, and greater efficiency in the overall process.

Document capture solutions extract business critical data in a matter of seconds before validating the document to follow the proper business rules. With the necessary data at hand, the documents are automatically classified to ensure they are distributed to the appropriate personnel. Using OCR technology, capture solutions automatically locate data regardless of where it is on the image, and index the data for immediate search and retrieval. With OCR, data, such as invoice number and amount due, can be automatically captured with greater accuracy before sharing with an accounting or ERP system.

INVOICING MADE EASY

By replacing manual processing with workflow automation, AP departments can turn invoices around in a matter of minutes instead of days. Business Process Management (BPM) software reduces the costs of invoice processing by fast-tracking invoice routing processes. You can send automated emails to the appropriate authorized approver with generated reminders when document action is required. Parameters can be set based on invoice amount.

For example, the system can be trained to automatically approve anything under a certain dollar amount. This helps AP departments to take advantage of early pay discounts by delivering timely and accurate information into accounting applications. With BPM, employees can easily view and perform their document tasks with a digital and collaborative invoice approval experience.

Today, more companies are realizing the benefits of Enterprise Content Management (ECM) software for automated invoice processing. As a digital document database designed to securely store all sensitive business information, ECM software provides decision makers with anytime access to accurate, verified invoice data for a clearer picture of current cash flow and processes. With the right ECM software, an AP manager can view a list of current invoices and see which are pending approval, which have been processed, and which still need to be paid.

A more efficient invoice processing solution is possible! Eliminate delays, high costs, and inefficient collaboration by implementing document management solutions into your AP department. Contact the Gordon Flesch Company today to learn more and take the first step toward creating an automated invoice process!

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