Your 2018 Strategic Finance Plan Should Include an End-to-End e-Payables Solution
Implementing e-invoicing is an important first step in making accounts payable more efficient, strategic, and cost-effective; however, unless you implement a cloud-based end-to-end payables solution, you’re missing out on significant benefits.
According to The Hackett Group, companies that have transitioned to e-invoice payment processes are seeing significant savings; that’s because e-invoice payment processes cost 60 percent less than relying on paper-based processes. It would seem logical for companies to put automating invoice approval and payables processing on their “must-do” list. But they’re not.
Daniel Andrew tries to unravel why resistance exists in an article published earlier this year in PaymentSource.com, “Dumping paper invoices is vital for business relevance.” Citing an Ardent Partners report on the state of e-payables, Andrew discusses the fact that e-invoicing alone significantly cuts invoicing processing costs and time. According to the report, “the average cost to process a single invoice is 81% lower than the competition, while the average time to process a single invoice is 77% faster.”
Andrew then states that taking that next step, centralizing the e-invoicing process so that it links straight through to payments, is a “game-changer.” Yet companies still are reluctant to move forward, according to the Institute of Financial Management (IOFM) which notes that companies indicate too many competing projects (25%), a lack of funding (17%), and limited IT resources (12%) as their reasons to resist digitizing and automating their AP invoice approval processes.
Part of the problem, according to Andrew, is that instead of companies looking for a solution that not only best serves their own needs but also adds value for customers they look for the easiest solution. The reality is that the right solution, one that’s flexible and scalable and offers real-time visibility into each step of the process can result in a positive ROI in the very first year. This fact makes moot the reasons stated above as to why companies resist the move to an e-payables solution.
Read the full article to discover why transitioning to an end-to-end e-payables solution should be a part of your 2018 strategic finance plan.