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4 Reasons Why You Should Automate Your Accounts Payable
Fri Nov 18, 2022 | jean-francois roberge
The automation of work continues to revolutionize the environment of Canadian organizations. In a previous article, we spoke about how, despite initial concerns, work automation can be beneficial to you and your team and have a positive effect on employment. This is especially true of repetitive tasks that occupy an unfair amount of your time. You and your team deserve to engage in more creative and collaborative activities that help you feel more involved with your work. Automating repetitive tasks can certainly help with this!
This is particularly the case with accounts payable. Invoices that come in will be automatically processed without the need for human intervention. Each step is managed in a digital landscape rather than requiring members of your team to complete. These processes can be simplified to free up your time and encourage you to participate in more engaging work. It’s fast, simple, and can help eliminate common errors.
Here's four reasons why you should consider automating your accounts payable!
1. Automating Accounts Payable Saves You Time
One of the key factors for choosing automation is saving time for your team. We all know that there are tons of tasks to get done in a day. Having the ability to delegate these tasks to a trustworthy automated system will help free up your time for priority projects.
Members of your team are looking to find a sense of purpose in their work. This can be seen in a review conducted by McKinsey & Company, who found that 70% of employees surveyed said their “sense of purpose is defined by their work” (McKinsey & Company). Automating menial tasks will help free up your employees’ time, allowing them to participate in work that feels purposeful. In fact, one of the largest non-profits in New York, The New York Foundling, was able to save “100,000 hours in manual work annually” (Fast Company) by incorporating automation into their workflow.
Automating your accounts payable will give your team more time to focus on things like creative and collaborative tasks, which helps boost morale. You’ll be creating a more welcoming and enjoyable work environment when you choose to automate. By removing the mundane tasks that feel like a waste of time, employees are likely to feel happier with their work.
There’s also a massive employee shortage right now. This has been leading to some employees having to “take on the workloads of colleagues who are leaving in droves” (Fast Company). These employees are then left feeling frustrated and dejected after having to add to their list of tasks. Automation can help alleviate some of this stress.
It’ll also help eliminate potential time wasted on “doubling-up” on work. With all workplaces losing employees, there’s more room for confusion in the employee shuffle. If someone isn’t sure where an invoice is in the accounts payable process, they may accidentally start from the beginning, unaware that someone else is almost complete with the work. This is a significant waste of your employees’ time.
With automated accounts payable software, your employees won’t have to worry about this. They can go in and see how far along the invoice is in the approval process. There also won’t be a need for people to work on it since the system will do it for them.
2. You’ll Be Minimizing the Risk of Errors
It’s not uncommon for there to be an error or two in your work. That’s why most companies have strict review processes in place, to make sure that everything is completed to the best of a team’s abilities. But even then, mistakes happen, and errors can slip through unnoticed. This is especially the case with work that’s mundane or repetitive. In these instances, people are less likely to feel engaged with their task, and more errors will be made.
If there’s a couple of errors every now and then, that’s okay. But if it becomes a habit or is for something as important as your accounts payable, then this can mean serious losses for your business. You’ll be wasting time and money. Reducing the risk of mistakes is essential to saving your company’s money and reputation. If you become synonymous with “errors” during the accounts payable phase, others are less likely to trust your team. This could mean losing accounts and having to regain that lost trust.
Currently, the most error-prone method for invoicing is manual options. This includes things like paper, such as with mail or faxes. Both of these are known for slowing down the invoicing process and “make dealing with errors difficult and tedious” (Levvel). Automating your processes will significantly decrease the risks, lowering the level of stress for your team and for your clients as important data won’t be missed.
3. Save Your Clients and Your Business Money
Current manual labour for an accounts payable invoice is estimated to cost businesses up to $15 each to process. According to a study by Levvel Research, automating your accounts payable could save you 60–80% compared to manual processing. This averages out to a $10 savings each invoice, with automated invoices costing approximately $5 or less to process.
With current automated accounts payable tools processing data at 99.5% accuracy (Institute of Finance and Management), your organization can save money by eliminating human errors. In standardizing your invoices, you’re ensuring that your accounts payable processes are reliable. This will help you save money for clients as well, by eliminating doubling up on invoices, or overcharging/under-charging.
4. It’s a Win for Your Clients and Your Team
Ever had a client in crisis who needed your help ASAP, but you felt stretched thin because of an immediate task that was due by end-of-day? There’s no win in this instance. Either you attend to your client, who really needs your help, or you complete that task. Now imagine that task can complete itself. You’ve officially freed up time for yourself and your team to assist clients immediately.
Want this freedom? It’s simple, really!
Integrating automation into your current workflow will give your team the flexibility they need to help clients.
Automating your accounts payable will free up your team’s time, allowing them to better connect with your clients. What’s more, those possible client crisis situations? There will be a lot fewer of them when you automate.
Benefits of Automating Your Accounts Payable Include:
- Lowering the potential for errors, such as duplicated or late invoices.
- Making your team more accessible to clients.
- Speeding up the invoicing process.
- Creating a more collaborative work environment.
If you’re ready to upgrade your workflow by choosing automated accounts payable, XMA can help you! We offer several automated solutions, including accounts payable.
Make a positive change for your team when you choose to automate. Contact us today to learn more!