When it comes to crunching numbers, nowhere is accuracy more important than in accounting. Crunching, working, generating, and calculating the right figures is only a portion of the job for Accounts Payable departments. However, human error, lost documents, and inefficient processes all contribute to issues that can belay good numbers, and, in turn, productivity and employee happiness.
What to do, what to do?
You need tools that will improve what you’re doing, limit delays and unnecessary work, and streamline data input and approval routing (i.e. the top pains in many accounting firms).
Let’s go into a few process improvement tools, and why using them can enhance and improve the productivity for your AP department!
#1: Data Exchange
When dealing with documents and invoices, you want to get actionable information, and be able to use that information across your entire business. After entering data once, you shouldn’t have to duplicate that effort anywhere else – whether it be in your ERP or document management system. This can be made possible with data exchange technology, which duplicates itself when needed, so there’s no need for extra fuss or repetitive entry.
#2: Mobile Capture
We’ve all got our mobile devices on us at all times, so why not make use of that powerhouse in your pocket? Mobile Capture allows anyone in the department to capture important information securely and share it with other team members. Not only does having this tool increase productivity, but it also makes the process of capturing something and placing it into a document management system that much easier.
#3: Optical Character Recognition (OCR) Software
If you haven’t heard of OCR, you’re missing out! OCR is a process in which data is extracted from scanned or digital documents, reformatted, and then transformed into searchable and editable text. By finding an invoice and scanning it into your system, for example, OCR software can detect and identify line item details, such as vendor name, date, and address, and convert that unstructured data into text. All of this is done automatically, so there’s no need for a person in the department to manually index folders upon folders. That returns valuable administrative time for more important tasks. The best part? OCR integrates with many Microsoft products, so it’s not a hassle to implement.
#4: Robotic Accounting Automation
In the world of automated software, robotic accounting automation (RAA) is difficult to beat. This technology tool enlists a suite of services to minimize manual data entry and reduce human error. Things like automated notifications and automated data entry simplify approval processes and route documents to anyone who needs to be involved in a given business process. There’s never a question of where something’s at – with proper RAA workflows, you’ll never have to guess again.
Think of iLink as a tiny button with powerful capabilities. It’s a button add-on that lets you pull related documentation from your system directly – without the need of a developer. The best part? It syncs with your existing ERP system and makes day-to-day AP tasks a lot easier to accomplish. Say sayonara to switching tasks or software constantly in order to get one thing done. Let’s face it: that’s just not an efficient way to work.
There you have it – these are all valuable tools in the kit that your accounting department should be taking advantage of right now! It’s difficult to think that by making a few software changes, your entire workplace could be revolutionized, but it’s definitely possible. We’ve seen it happen.