Over the past 18 months, digital transformation has been at the forefront of many organisations’ planning. The forced evolution of remote working has accelerated a trend that was already well underway and has had businesses of all shapes and sizes looking into process automation and touchless technologies. As a result, there has been a significant migration of workflows to mobile and cloud-based solutions.

For many, the digitization of transactional workflows has focussed on the sales side of things – making sure customers can still purchase goods and services without the need to be physically present. Of course, this makes a lot of sense as you can’t fund further digital transformation if your sales have dried up.

As we settle into what has become known as the new normal, businesses are now looking to extend digital transformation to other functions within the business that may be more traditionally paper-based or involve a greater degree of manual processing. Supply chain management is a good example and, more specifically, the Accounts Payable function.

What’s the problem with AP?

It would be unfair to suggest that AP hasn’t already undergone a degree of process automation, but one would equally have to accept that it has a way to go before it can claim the same level of “joined up” thinking that other departments enjoy.

The receipt, capture, verification, approval, payment and reconciliation of supplier invoices frequently involves a lot of manual processing and the integration of multiple systems. All of this takes time, costs money and contains risk.

Just think about two of the most common workflows: invoice matching and approvals. Matching invoices to purchase orders and checking that the goods received match the invoice involves multiple processes. And this assumes everything checks out, what happens if the invoice doesn’t match the PO?

Approvals? Don’t get us started on approvals!

The traditional challenges of managing exceptions and unauthorized expenditure, tracking down lost invoices and avoiding over/under payment have become exacerbated in a world where work has become something you do, not somewhere you go. Collaborative solutions, designed to help remote workers carry on business as usual, seem to have passed the AP department by.

A smarter way of working

The next generation of AP solutions is designed to eliminate the time-consuming, mundane tasks associated with AP, freeing resource to concentrate on where they add the greatest value. AP process automation can be used to automatically capture invoice details, extract the data and match it to information held in other systems, such as purchase orders. Invoice processing, distribution, approvals and storage can all be automated; reducing the risk of manual error whilst saving both time and money.

Tell me more!

SOS Systems has recently expanded its portfolio of software and services to include the SmartOffice AP solution.

“SmartOffice Accounts Payable is a smart, powerful cloud-based Electronic Accounts Payable Solution that reduces the cost of processing invoices by up to 80%. Processing becomes a completely touchless experience, supporting remote working, approvals, and full visibility.”

The solution features a wide range of advanced, process-optimisation functionality, including price watching, statement reconciliation, document tracking and nominal ledger coding. An intuitive, user-friendly dashboard brings all of the management information into a single pane of glass.

By way of introduction to the technology, we are running a webinar on 27th October 2021. The session will feature live product demonstration (so you can get to see how the solution works first-hand), followed by a brief Q&A.

Useful links

For more information, visit our SmartOffice AP product page

Download a copy of the SmartOffice AP product brochure