Accounts payable (AP) is an important function for every company. Failing to pay vendors and others in a timely manner not only can result in having penalties applied to past-due invoices, but it can also damage key business relationships that your company needs to be successful. Consequently, most businesses do a reasonably good job in this area.
However, if all you’re looking to accomplish is to get payments out ahead of the deadline, and you’re fine with doing that manually, you’re missing out on a competitive advantage that can set you apart from others in your industry. AP automation can streamline your operations, saving you time and money, and elevating your company in the eyes of your business partners.
What AP Automation Can Do for Your Company
Process automation of any type can help your business run more efficiently. In the case of AP automation, in particular, the benefits can be significant and far-reaching, including:
- Using AP as a springboard to other automation initiatives. Accounting is a discipline that affects every other department in a company. In automating your accounts payable processes, you develop a foundation and a template that can be used to streamline the activities of other groups.
- Utilizing accounting resources more effectively. Automated AP processes are completed in a fraction of the time it takes workers to complete them. As a result, your accounting team can turn its attention to other tasks sooner and be more productive.
- Bringing calm to the chaos. The myriad of invoicing practices and invoice formats AP departments have to deal with can be overwhelming at times. An AP automation solution can be set up to manage even the most complex invoices with ease, reducing the stress on your accounting team.
- Providing consistency under any conditions. Automating your AP processes makes your company more nimble. And as we all learned when the COVID-19 pandemic suddenly had us working from home, being able to keep processing invoices without missing a beat can help prevent an external crisis from causing an internal operational emergency.
- Minimizing human error. Even accounting staff who exhibit incredible attention to detail will make a mistake now and then. And, unfortunately, those errors can be costly. Automating your AP processes takes much of the human element out of them, substituting a level of precision that no person can achieve and greatly reducing the risk of errors.
- Integrating the AP automation solution with other business systems. When your AP system shares data with tools like your ERP system, your accounting team has greater visibility into overall business operations. That transparency provides insights they can use to make financial decisions that better support your business strategies and growth objectives.
AP Automation: Easier to Achieve Than You Might Think
Ask anyone in accounting if they’d like to see AP processes automated and you’ll surely get an enthusiastic, “Yes!” So, what’s keeping companies from automating? More often than not, we’ve found that decision makers have misconceptions about what an AP automation initiative will entail.
They envision many, many months or even years of work to get a solution designed, tested and implemented. Fortunately, the reality is that it doesn’t have to take nearly that long. In fact, many of our clients at Buddha Logic are surprised by how quickly a solution can be developed and how smoothly it can be brought online.
Wondering what an AP automation project would look like in your environment? We’re happy to talk with you about your objectives and the best way to achieve them in a complimentary 60-minute exploratory call. To schedule time with one of our experts, call 303-807-6528 or contact us online.
About the Author
Charles Weidman is the President and CTO of Buddha Logic. Charlie has over two decades of experience in the design, development and implementation of content services and business process management solutions. He is also an expert in robotic process automation. Charlie founded Buddha Logic with the idea that well-architected digital document capture and management processes are both beautifully simple and powerfully logical. Find and connect with Charlie on LinkedIn.