If it feels like processing payments to suppliers is taking longer, you are not imagining things.
One-third of accounts payable practitioners
are working longer hours these days, according to the Institute of Finance and Management
(IOFM). In fact, eight percent of
accounts payable practitioners are working an additional two hours or more per
day, which is saying something when you consider the long days that most
accounts payable practitioners logged before the move to remote work environments.
These longer days can be attributed to trying
to address the challenges created by today’s reality. 25% of accounts payable leaders say they are
struggling to mitigate increased fraud and compliance risks. 22% of accounts payable leaders say their
department has experienced a big spike in supplier inquiries regarding the
status of invoices and payments. And 20%
of accounts payable leaders say that paying suppliers on-time, while staff work
from home, is a major challenge.
These sobering statistics illustrate the
difficulty in adapting manual and semi-automated accounts payable processes to
a remote work environment. Only 9% of
accounts payable leaders polled by IOFM say their department is fully automated
with few or no manual processes. 33% of
accounts payable departments have little automation. And 14% of accounts payable departments
process invoices and pay suppliers in a completely manual environment.
Manual processes create friction and
inefficiency across the supplier payment lifecycle:
information is not captured
is poorly organized
is not timely
are badly integrated
costs are high
As a result, paying suppliers requires
accounts payable practitioners to spend most of their working day bogged down
on countless menial, manual tasks that distract them from higher-value
activities. Manual tasks such as:
for a range of payment methods
This list goes on and on.
On top of these manual tasks, accounts payable
practitioners also must be mindful of dozens of business rules, policies,
regulations, and auditor guidelines governing how suppliers get paid.
The challenge of paying suppliers becomes even
bigger as a business grows.
Growing businesses may have many different
systems to integrate, complex processes to try to navigate and manage, and far
flung accounts payable teams working across multiple sites.
All told, 84% of the typical accounts payable
practitioner’s time is wasted on manual activities, IOFM benchmarking data
finds. In fact, most accounts payable
managers spend more of their day on transaction processing than on the
managerial tasks that they were hired for.
No wonder that accounts payable has a
reputation as a tactical back-office function.
Businesses have had their fill of accounts
71% of businesses plan to automate their
accounts payable function further in 2020, according to IOFM. Even businesses that are largely automated
plan to deploy more technology. Only 6% of
accounts payable departments have thrown in the towel and say they have no
plans to budge from their outdated, manual processes.
Automation eliminates friction across the
accounts-payable lifecycle. Invoices are
aggregated onto a single platform.
Invoice data is effortlessly extracted, validated, and matched against
purchase order information. Invoices
that require review or approval are digitally routed based upon pre-configured
business rules. Approved invoices are
seamlessly uploaded into an ERP. And a
single file is used to pay suppliers in their preferred method. And payments and invoices are reconciled in
In an automated accounts payable environment,
staff only need to intervene when necessary.
The result is a function that delivers better business outcomes today, and
greater scalability in the future.
This frictionless process is a far cry from
the inefficiencies accounts payable is accustomed to.
Importantly, eliminating inefficiencies in the
accounts payable lifecycle enables businesses to avoid costly late payment
penalties, create more opportunities to capture early payment discounts,
enhance visibility into cashflow and spending, strengthen supplier
relationships, protect against fraud, and do more with far less.
Automating payments to suppliers is just what
businesses of all sizes need in turbulent times.
Ready to eliminate inefficiencies in the way
your business pays its suppliers? If so,
Paymerang wants to speak with you.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
to arrange a no-obligation product demonstration.