Accounts Payable (AP) in 2021

The Accounts Payable process helps businesses efficiently and effectively manage the payment for goods and services procured. It is closely linked to and dependent on the wider Purchase to Pay process. Accounts Payable Automation has been transforming the Account Payable operations for many years.

Whilst the purpose and function of AP is clear, for many businesses, AP, even with Automation,  is a complex and challenging world of exceptions, part-automation or manual processes.

66% of all invoices need some form of manual intervention

Information Age

47% ...

of organisations are still relying on manual or part automated AP processes – Business Insider 2020

44% ...

of businesses are looking to add automation to their payables processes as a way to capitalise on the efficiency & cost-cutting benefits it brings in – Business Insider 2020

85% ...

of the average Accounts Payable professional’s time is spent transaction processing – Aiim 2019

Up to £50 per invoice

The cost of processing an invoice in the UK averages between £4 and £25, and in some cases even up to £50, per individual invoice – Gartner

The Accounts Payable Process – Challenges & Pains

Despite the existence and maturing of Accounts Payable automation software, many Accounts Payable teams are still struggling with a long list of exceptions, manual tasks and problems along the AP process

 

1. RAISE PO

No authorised supplier process. No PO process. No exceptions process

2. RECEIPT GOODS & SERVICES

No receipting process, part delivery, errors, unsatisfied/rejects

3. RECEIVE INVOICE

Incorrect process used by suppliers or internally, creates confusion

4. DATA ENTRY, EXTRACT, CHECK

Capture failures, rekeying, errors

5. MATCH INVOICE, PO & GRN DATA

Matching failures, errors, duplicates, queries

6. APPROVE & MAKE PAYMENTS, ARCHIVE

Rejections, Queries, chasing, non-compliant requests. Weak visibility or search. No retention policy.

The Total Cost of Accounts Payable

A common approach for benchmarking Accounts Payable is calculating the cost of processing an invoice. Research from the Hackett group and Gartner put the average cost of processing an invoice in the UK from between £4 and £25 with certain complex or error prone processes costing up to £50 per invoice.

Click here to see what to include in your total cost per invoice.

Accounts Payable Transformation

Today, the entire AP process can be digitised, process managed and automated to degrees and levels previously not possible:

 

AP PROCESS OPPORTUNITIES TO TRANSFORM

1. RAISE PO

Request, approve & issue PO with authorised supplier or import from existing purchasing system

2. RECEIPTS GOODS & SERVICES

Receive goods & services with GRN or import from existing receipting system

3. RECEIVE INVOICE

Receive invoices from ANY source, automated OCR/ICR of invoices to capture & extract data

4. DATA ENTRY, EXTRACT, CHECK

OCR/ICR verification & rekeying as a service in the case of capture failure

5. MATCH INVOICE, PO & GRN DATA

Automated 3-way matching and processing of invoices, goods receipt notes and purchase orders

6. APPROVE PAYMENTS

Approval process with required approvers & exception handling via digital workflows

7. MAKE PAYMENT & ARCHIVE

Updating of accounting/ERP system to make payment. Archiving & managed retention policy

5 Methods of Accounts Payable Automation

The right AP Automation solution and transformation depends on the nature of your AP requirements and your situation across people, process & technology.

Click the following link to view the 5 Methods AP Automation Success.

The Benefits of Accounts Payable Automation

Whilst the benefits of AP automation will vary by customer and depend on starting point and variables across people, process and technology.

Click the following link to view the 10 Benefits of AP Automation

  • Lower operating cost & faster performances
  • Less waste & inefficiencies for the toughest AP Processes
  • Modular & integrated
  • Operational & AP Process Excellence
  • Flexible delivery and hosting models
  • Pay as you go
  • Lower risk & enhanced compliance and governance
  • Better Cash management and at a glance reporting and control

Why ProcessFlows for Accounts Payable Transformation

We have a 33 year track record of success & expertise in invoice capture, AP automation, digital processes and services.

We have accredited & expert people  – from Process Analysts, Solution Architects and Project Management through to AP Implementation engineers, software developers and Multi-tiered Service desk operations.

We are independent. We partner with leading AP / P2P technology providers on the market such as Kofax, Ancora, Hyland, Opentext, M-Files and Microsoft. Based on these and our world- class service desk – we have also developed our Hybrid AP Automation as a Service platform

A robust approach to transformation based on partnership and supporting every step of the journey from creating a vision and plan through to project managed development, implementation, transition as well as continuous improvement and support.

For these reasons and more, ProcessFlows should be your trusted partner to support your process and business transformation projects.
Find out more by clicking here.

Our Customers

From global enterprises and government departments, to local small businesses, here are some of our customers that have partnered with us, using Process Automation to transform their business with digital and automated operations. Click the logos to download the Case Studies.

To read all of our success stories, visit our Case Studies page.

More Information & How Can We Help?

We offer no-obligation, free of charge assessments, consultations and business cases to help you identify the right solution for your organisation. To find out more or to book a consultation, please call +44 (0)1962 835053, email enquiries@processflows.co.uk, or fill in the form below.

Thank you for your interest, we look forward to working with you.

Quick Contact