2021 is the year to automate accounts payable and improve efficiency!
This year is the time to invest and automate accounts payable functions for your finance team. The 2021 budget has been announced by the government, providing a great opportunity for businesses to start making big moves when it comes to their tech investments and planning for growth.
Investing businesses will see a 25p return for every pound spent on new equipment, representing a huge saving of around £25 billion for UK companies over the two year period.
This couldn’t come at a better time, with the economy having been almost at a standstill over the previous year and economists expecting an influx in spending following the ease of restrictions.
Automating your AP function can improve efficiency by up to 30%, saving valuable time and money for your business. Cleardata can provide a combination of automated AP technology and processing services to perform manual finance tasks such as invoice scanning, validation, exception handling, automated emails and reporting.
Is your AP function scalable?
With increased spending comes an increased number of incoming invoices as demand grows. The demand for many businesses is tipped to exceed pre-COVID levels and the key question for a lot of businesses is going to be, ‘is our AP function scalable’. If you find the answers to that question isn’t a resounding yes, the next question is ‘how do we scale?’.
One option is to hire more members of staff to aid in processing incoming invoices. Finding your AP team overwhelmed and then hiring a staff member can put you a number of weeks behind from the get-go. Training needs to be provided and generally, a staff member will want to settle into a role over a number of months before they’re operating at full efficiency. Not to mention that this is a resource-draining solution due to:
- Recruitment fees
- Time finding candidates
- Time interviewing candidates
- Salary costs – Tax and NI
- Training costs
- Senior staff time spent administering training
- Reducing headcount when demand drops
The good news is AP automation offers a cost-efficient way of introducing flexible scalability to your accounts payable function.
AP Automation Service Features
- Omnichannel collection – Regardless of where you’re invoices are arriving from i.e. via email or data feed, Cleardata can capture, validate and process them.
- Outsource mailroom and scanning service – financial documentation can be diverted to our secure bureau for scanning, capture and digital document management.
- Automatic data capture – Using automated data capture software, specified fields are recorded, eliminating manual data entry and improving accuracy at validation.
- Validation – Invoices can be validated against existing databases automatically matching based on the supplier name, purchase order number, amounts, line items.
- Exception handling – In the event that fields are missing or are seemingly incorrect any exceptions can be sent into a monitored queue for review by a member of our team or yours.
- Duplication monitoring – Any duplicates received are instantly flagged and marked for review to ensure there is no lost time or revenue to duplicate payments.
- Rules-based classification and workflow – Documents are sorted and forwarded to the appropriate team for review, action or sign off.
- Robotic Process Automation – Cleardata offers Robocloud, via RPA as a service. Our cloud-based software robots can perform many manual processes to automate your AP process.
- Cloud document management – documentation can be securely stored in the cloud, providing fast access for your team.
- Automated Supplier Responses – Any existing policies around missing information or errors on the invoices can be reported back to suppliers automatically with a notification asking them to resend a corrected document.
Why automate accounts payable?
If you’re considering automation for your AP team read the key benefits below.
Cost-effective, scalable solution
AP automation combined with an outsourced invoice scanning and processing service allows you to deal with peaks and troughs in your invoicing cycle, due to seasonal demand or business growth, without having to recruit additional staff. This ultimately enables your business to reduce training and recruitment costs.
It’s faster and more accurate, reducing human error
Automate validation and exception management on incoming invoices to ensure documents are processed quickly and meet your business compliance requirements. For example handling identifying invoices with no purchase order and sending an automated email to the supplier advising no PO, no pay.
It frees up staff members to do more business-critical tasks
AP staff spend less time scanning invoices, fixing scanner and quality issues, performing manual data entry, handling supplier payment queries and more time on pro-active accounts payable tasks.
As a bi-product staff are happier
- Less boring and laborious tasks means more energised and enthusiastic team members
- Happier staff leads to a better retention rate (so HR will be pleased)
Automate accounts payable and be ready to grab the business investment opportunities of 2021 with both hands. If you want to know more about AP automation speak to our team today on 0800 0468081 or contact us