Effective financial operations require managing a high volume of invoices for all goods and services. Whether it is an invoice for products, utility services, supplier payments, etc., there is no shortage of invoiced transactions requiring payment and data input to properly maintain the operations of a business. Traditional invoice processing methods are time-consuming and prone to errors that can clog up accounts payable (AP) workflows and cash flow. Thankfully, modern solutions like AP automation revolutionize invoice management by fast-tracking AP operations, reducing errors, and saving valuable time and resources.

What is AP Automation?

AP automation refers to using software solutions to automate the accounts payable process. This involves digitizing invoices (otherwise referred to as e-invoicing), automating data entry, and facilitating electronic payments. The goal is to eliminate manual tasks, reduce paperwork, and enhance efficiency.

How AP Automation Works

There is a structured workflow to automation, with each step a crucial component of effectively managing invoices. The first part involves capturing the invoice data. This can be done in multiple ways, most commonly with electronic data interchange (EDI), which seamlessly transmits line-item invoice data directly into a back-office or accounting system. Another common method is optical character recognition (OCR), which works by pulling invoice data from a scanned or photographed paper invoice. All pertinent invoice data, like vendor details, invoice number, date, and amount, are extracted and stored in the business’s invoice management system for easier bookkeeping and reconciliation.

All invoices are routed to the appropriate party for approval. This reduces operational bottlenecks and allows businesses to accelerate the AP cycle. Once approved, AP automation systems facilitate the payment of invoices via electronic funds transfer (EFT), a much faster payment method compared to traditional payment methods like checks or money orders.

Benefits of AP Automation

Implementing AP automation brings numerous advantages to businesses of all sizes.

Increased Efficiency

Automating the AP process eliminates time-consuming manual tasks. Data entry, invoice matching, and approval processes are expedited, allowing AP teams to focus on more strategic activities. This increased efficiency can lead to faster invoice processing times and improved cash flow management.

Reduced Errors

Manual data entry is prone to errors, leading to payment delays, duplicate payments, or other discrepancies. AP automation significantly reduces these risks by ensuring accurate data capture and validation. Invoice data is GL-coded to match organizational naming conventions.

Cost Savings

By reducing the need for manual intervention, businesses can reduce labor costs associated with invoice processing. AP automation utilizes EFT for faster digital payments, which also saves costs associated with other payment methods, such as envelopes or postage for checks.

Enhanced Visibility and Control

AP automation provides real-time visibility into the status of invoices and payments. This transparency allows for better cash flow management and financial planning. Automated workflows ensure that all invoices go through the proper approval channels, enhancing control over the AP process.

Compliance and Security

Automated AP systems offer robust security features, protecting sensitive financial data from unauthorized access. Additionally, they help businesses comply with regulatory requirements by maintaining accurate and accessible records. Audit trails provided by AP automation software ensure transparency and accountability.

Utilize PaymentSource® Premium for AP Automation Needs

AP automation is a transformative solution that greatly improves the invoice management process. Fintech has expanded its AP automation capabilities beyond just alcohol to encompass all invoice transactions. With PaymentSource Premium, businesses can leverage the same tried-and-true Fintech expertise and apply it to all goods, services, and operating supplies. Take advantage of the increased efficiency, cost savings, reduced errors, and more by automating the accounts payable process with Fintech for sustainable growth and success.

Read More From Fintech

When it comes to alcohol businesses, suppliers are looking to drive as many sales as possible. There are many ways to find new accounts, such as a route accounting system (RAS) that comes from distributor depletion data. Some suppliers, including those just starting out, may not have access

Convenience stores, liquor stores, and smoke shops are a few examples of businesses in off-premises retailing. The term “off-premises” relates to alcohol purchasing and consumption, meaning alcohol can be bought at the location but cannot be consumed there like with a bar or restaurant. These stores carry a

For our latest Drinking Buddies, we are featuring von Trapp Brewing. The brewery is part of the famous Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe, Vermont. They offer an array of year-round and seasonal beers at the brewery, giving plenty to choose from while enjoying the scenic views from the

Scan-based trading (SBT) is a consignment selling model that offers improved inventory management, streamlined processes, and better collaboration between retailers and suppliers. Technology integration is central to its success, facilitating seamless transactions, data insights, and enhanced decision-making. Let’s look at how SBT and technology intertwine to create retail

Ready to learn more?
Fill out the form below to request more information.