Whether it’s for your personal life or your business, paying bills is likely not at the top of your list of favorite things to do. While personal bills are an undertaking on their own, managing payables in your business can seem like a never-ending, insurmountable task.

The burden can be even more overwhelming if your business is bogged down by a manual process that requires employees to key in and verify invoices by hand, but there is a solution. If you want to improve the efficiency of your accounts payable process but are not sure how, you are not alone.

Here are three ways an automated accounts payable system can help your business save time and money.

Reduce the hours required to “key-in” and verify invoices.

If you have multiple employees who enter data and verify invoices by hand, you may not realize how many hours go into that process. With an automated system, invoices are scanned or automatically retrieved from an e-mail inbox, and the pertinent information is digitally captured and electronically routed into a queue. Your payables clerk simply reviews the data for accuracy before finalizing it. With the new process in place, you will quickly recoup your technology investment with savings from reduced payroll expenses.

Streamline and digitize the approval process for invoices. 

Do you or others in your business procrastinate working through the invoice approval pile? Let technology do the heavy lifting. Instead of manually sorting through a stack of invoices and approving each one for payment, invoices are electronically routed to the appropriate reviewer(s), who can approve the batch for payment with a single click. Digitizing the invoice approval process now will save you time in the long run.

Assist in taking advantage of payment terms to improve cash flow. 

Have you left money on the table when early-payment discounts weren’t claimed because the approval and payment process couldn’t be completed quickly enough to take advantage of a vendor’s offer? Accounts payable solutions allow you to set reminders on vendor discount offers so you can meet their payment deadlines. Implement an accounts payable system so you can capitalize on payment terms and improve the cash flow of your business.

Every business has challenges, but processing accounts payables should not be among them. By taking advantage of technology that automates your process, you can eliminate bottlenecks that slow down payment times. The improved workflow will in turn help strengthen relationships with both your vendors and your clients. 

The LBMC Accounting Services team specializes in consulting to improve processes and enhance financial system capabilities. If you would like to learn more about how to improve your current accounting software or need help selecting a new one, LBMC can help.

Ginger Wyatt is a Senior Manager in LBMC’s Tax division located in the firm’s Knoxville office. She can be reached at 865-521-1675 or gwyatt@lbmc.com.

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