In AP, efficiency is king, and it is here RPA rules. Per the Institute of Finance, an AP deptartment using automation can process 22,500 invoices per FTE/year vs. a manual AP department which maxes out at 2,200 invoices per FTE/year. Time also equates to money. According to Levvel Research, manual processing of an invoice can cost an organization up to $15, not to mention the downstream rework costs, lost discounts, and late payment fees related to manual invoicing errors.
Utilizing Robotic Process Automation (RPA) in the finance procure-to-pay arena can rapidly improve AP throughput, reduce payment errors, optimize cash management, maximize discounts, and minimize late payment penalties.
Here is what an automated AP process (capable of 22,000 invoices per FTE/year) would look like:
- 70%+ of invoices are received digitally (ex. fax, email, pdf, EDI, FTP, or downloaded)
- A bot opens and, using OCR, reads each invoice
- A bot then populates applicable invoice data into the AP system (including an attached copy of the invoice)
- Per defined business rules, the bot analyzes the invoice as required (i.e., vendor check, 3-way match, payment terms, approval level/routings required, etc.)
- After analysis, the bot takes appropriate actions on the invoice per the business rules (ex. vendor record check, PO/receipt match, approval level/routing, etc.) and routes the invoice for approval or AP review as required.
- Once all approval rules are met, the bot then creates a payment record in the AP system that maximizes discounts and optimizes cash flow.
Robotic Process Automation (RPA) can turbocharge your AP department allowing for the delegation of time-consuming and error-prone invoice processing tasks to software robots. Resulting in increased efficiency, reduced stress due to invoice peaks, and the opportunity for your AP staff to increase their focus on optimizing cash flow and maintaining more proactive and positive relationships with your vendors and partners.
Contact us to learn more about how to accelerate the efficiency of your AP team; allowing them to focus more on what matters most.