Why Do Organizations Need to Upgrade Their Accounts Payable Processes with Smart & Intelligent Automation?
Over the last few years, organizations have started implementing Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) in their Accounts Payable (AP) process to streamline the workflow and increase team efficiency.
Businesses have shifted from traditional or manual AP processing to an automated system where software does 60% of the work and 40% by humans. The transformation has significantly improved the quality of work, the productivity of teams, and the accuracy of the Accounts Payable process. However, there is still scope for automation to be more secure, accurate, and independent of human intervention. Smart automation will guide the stakeholders with predictive analytics based on the company's financial statistics, transactional data, and financial health.
Accounts Payable Smart Automation is the best in line as the solution has the latest technologies with cloud-based processing to make it compatible with any ERP software and accessible from any device.
Inside this blog
Let's understand the Smart Accounts Payable Automation process in detail.
Smart or Intelligent Accounts Payable Automation is software that integrates the latest technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), advanced Optical Character Recognition (OCR), Intelligent Document Processing (IDP), and Cloud-based processing to improve the accounts payable process with almost 100% data accuracy and zero-touch automation.
CFOs measure their business growth based on the annual revenue earned and finances spent. In these financial activity cycles, smart automation can have a crucial impact as it can process these invoices as procure-to-pay to understand the company's financial health clearly. By combining Accounts Payable (AP) automation with AI, Machine Learning, OCR, and IDP, the Accounts Payable (AP) process can transform any form of unstructured data into structured data and provide meaningful real-time insights to CFOs for better decision-making.
The Accounts Payable Process involves receiving, validating, capturing invoices, analyzing data, taking approvals, payment transactions, and much more. The highlighted aspect of this workflow is data accuracy, efficiency, and security; therefore, the Smart AP Automation is known for doing all repetitive mundane tasks with zero-touch ability and safeguarding the data against all sorts of fraud and cyber threats.
The Smart Accounts Payable (AP) Automation has the following specifications:
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) – to understand the essential workflows and processes for automation and the creation of custom business rules for each vendor.
- Machine Learning – to understand the commands and memorize the activities in sequence for different financial cycles. Machine learning helps the system to analyze historical data and provide the desired recommendations.
- Advanced Optical Character Recognition (OCR) – to read the invoices, process them with 100% accuracy, and transfer them to the ERP system as input.
- Intelligent Document Processing – converts unstructured and semi-structured data into structured, detailed, and organized data which can provide end-to-end information and make the process document-centric.
- Cloud-Based processing – to allow authorized users to access the platform with anywhere and anytime activity. With its remote access feature and secure login, decision-makers can log in to the software from anywhere and receive the required information.
- 100% Data Security and Protection Against All Possible Cyber Threats - AI and Machine Learning algorithms constantly scan the system for possible security threats. The security system regularly upgrades itself with the latest security patches and protects it from all potential cyber threats.
- Improved Visibility and Transparency - Smart AP Automation ensures 100% visibility and transparency of information. It builds a customized report to represent the company's real-time cash flow status so that stakeholders can make calculated decisions.
- Seamless Data Management - Managing accounts payable manually leads to severe challenges like inaccurate data, missing paperwork, repeated payments, etc. However, smart automation makes the data management process well-organized and seamlessly handled with the best possible agility.
- No Paperwork and Errors - With the zero-touch feature, there's no need for paperwork or hardcopy documents to be maintained. Each piece of information is safely stored and available on the cloud-based platform.
- More Time Efficient and Productive - Unlike manual account processing, smart automation is efficient and speedy in its everyday functioning. It saves time, improves team productivity, and allows the AP team to take up more crucial tasks.
- Holistic Performance - The need for smart or intelligent accounts payable automation is that it provides holistic performance in each phase of the financial cycle. Without smart automation, businesses lose the visibility of the entire AP process. It leads to a lack of confidence and creates uneven workflow. However, smart automation (fully combined with AI and ML) makes workflow more visible and efficient across the end-to-end accounts payable process.
- Audit Compliance - Smart automation makes the audit process less time-consuming and more accurate as it constantly checks for duplicate/fraudulent data and reviews as per company compliance policies. Smart Accounts Payable (AP) Automation is handy as most countries' government support businesses to retain and record data.
- Fraud Protection - In case of fraud, smart AP automation will notify you of what happened, how it happened, and who is responsible. The automation software will show who authorized payments and how the verification occurred to protect the system against fraud.
- Manpower Optimization - As technology advances, the dependency on humans will reduce. With smart automation in the accounts payable process, stakeholders tend to optimize the staffing in their organizations to avoid overhead expenses. So, now businesses tend to adopt smart AP automation instead of looking for additional AP staff. An intelligent and equipped automation tool will enable your AP staff to do more smart work in less time.
- Easy Supplier Recognition - With the latest OCR and IDP combined solution, supplier details are directly visible to match the invoice under the ERP system. With integrated AI in smart automation, it becomes possible to calculate the correlation between different variables on the invoice and review it with historical data.
- Optimize labor and operational costs
- Protects customer data from all sorts of fraud and cyber threats
- Reduces per invoice cycle time from 5 minutes to 20 seconds
- Eliminates redundant invoice settlements and overpayments
- Improves time efficiency and reduces AP expenses
- Implements the latest vendor discounts as per the market value
- Practices regular compliance checks as per company policies
- Handles current as well as backlog invoices with efficiency
- Improve the quality of the output of data with meaningful insights
- Intelligent or Smart Automation in Accounts Payable can go a long way if combined with the latest OCR and IDP technology. It can understand the context of the information, organize the data, and improve its quality by structuring the unstructured data to give a fine-quality data result.
- Smart AP Automation constantly learns from previous tasks and programs the system to understand daily AP activities. With zero-touch technology, it can do regular tasks like making vendor payments, maintaining data, analyzing market data for best deals, sending regular updates to vendors, and providing a virtual assistant to vendors to maintain better relationships.
As technology is continuously evolving, so do businesses. Currently, companies are choosing paperless processes to capture data in digital formats and verify, approve, reject, receive, send, etc., via electronic methods. Businesses want to be empowered with intelligence to avoid inaccuracy issues and critically value their financial strategies. The manual entry process increases the scope of errors and disturbs the AP flow. Introducing smart automation in accounts payable streamlines the missing workflow and allow team members to do what makes them most productive and efficient at work.
The cash flow is the prime aspect of any business. Yet, thousands of companies still use manual or simple automation for processing accounts, leading to different complexities. It's time to switch your AP process with Smart Hermes AP Automation for rapid integration, assisted routing and data matching, better data visibility, simplified tax regulations, and more. If you are looking for an efficient AP Automation tool that improves workflow agility and data security while providing relevant financial insights, Hermes is your best choice.