Why You Should Be Looking to Automate Accounts Payable Now

Have you always thought about automating your Accounts Payable process, but keep pushing it further and further down your list of priorities? Let’s talk about why you should be looking to automate your AP now, before 2019 rears its ugly head.

Q4, or H2, is the best time to be looking to automate.

Whether your company is moving into Q4 or just the start of H2, this is most likely the best time to implement and automated solution.

Have the project finished by the start of the next financial year and you will be in a much better position to set a budget.

Even if implementation hasn’t even started yet, once you sign on the dotted line you will know how much you will have to spend on AP operational expenses.

With cloud systems, subscriptions can be taken monthly, meaning you won’t have to dip into Capital funds to process your invoices.

Furthermore, any issues with staff turnover throughout the upcoming year can be eased with not having to advertise jobs with immense amounts of data input.

Use up that last little bit of 2018’s budget.

Before it gets taken away – or even reduced for next year – find a use for that left-over budget.

Even if you don’t think you have enough to pay for a whole solution, as I mentioned, cloud tech has allowed companies to offer scalable solutions with scalable pricing.

Paying monthly will also allow you to get the ball rolling before Christmas and build the rest of the payments into your budget for next year.

Why are you waiting in the first place?

It’s 2018, why has it taken you this long to look to automate your AP?

Time? Money? Experience? Luckily for you, as technology gets more and more advanced, automation is now readily accessible for most businesses. Even better yet, those issues can all be solved through automation!

If you saw my previous blog about time management you may be comfortable with the idea that investing a small amount of time planning can reap massive benefits in the long term.

Automation is no exception, since a little planning of processes can evolve into a lifetime free from tedious, and time consuming, data input.

A Return-on-Investment everyone can agree with.

It’s easy to see benefit when investing in automation.

Most obviously, automating a process will mean a reduction in staff costs, or at least a re-assignment of staff to more beneficial tasks such as arranging early payment discounts and supplier management.

Other cost benefits could include the elimination of duplicate, or fraudulent, payments.

Even if you have already automated, look again.

I will say this every time this comes up, you update your mobile phones, tablets, computers, even TVs every few years or so, because technology is evolving at such a rapid pace.

Why would business automation be any different?

We are all seeing news stories on how AI, Machine Learning, Blockchain etc are advancing many industries.

Moore’s Law theorises that computer processors are doubling in capacity year on year, meaning an increase of speed and technological real-estate.

Automation is as advanced as it has ever been and will only continue to grow.

The faster you re-evaluate and implement, the faster you can reap the benefits.

To conclude, whether you have or haven’t automated AP before now, you should be looking at least once a year at how technology has moved on.

Even if you are still under contract, if your solution is cloud based you should be up to date with the latest tech. If you are not, I suggest a quick call to your supplier…

To put it bluntly, it’s always the best time to be looking to automate your accounts payable.

The sooner you start, the sooner you finish, and the sooner you can kick back, relax, and save your department’s fingers from frustrating typing of data into your ERP.

According to Gartner, 66% of leaders want to transform their business digitally. Yet, only about 11% are actually delivering “Digital Business”. 

During the recent World Economic Forum, it has been suggested that by 2025 more than half of all workplace tasks will be performed by machines.

Our question to you, is where are you on this journey towards automation?

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Post by Rory Coleman-Smith

Rory has been working with ITESOFT since early 2017. He has placed himself as a thought leader, educating finance departments on the latest advancements in technology in Financial Process Automation.

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