Are you stuck in an email invoice rut?

We’ll show you how you can organise your incoming emails in a way that all received invoices can be processed efficiently – regardless of whether you receive an invoice in paper format or in electronic form. The most important thing to remember: store all invoices in one central location!

There are many options to define the capturing and approving of invoices in a company. Here’s a proven approach with DocuWare:-

1. All invoices are collected in one electronic mailbox
The accounting department configures one central email box with an unique email address (eg: invoices@company.com). ALL invoices are sent to this address regardless of whether they have been received in paper or as an attachment to an email.

– Paper invoices can be scanned – for example in the mail room – and then emailed as a PDF to a central email address. This is achieved with a Multi-Functional Peripheral (MFP) which can be set up with this central email address.

– Email invoices can go directly to the central email address. Please ask your suppliers to send all invoices in the future to this one central address. If an invoice is sent by mistake to another email address of a colleague then this invoice can be forwarded to the central address by this colleague.

2. Importing invoices into the DocuWare tray
From the central email box, all invoices are transferred automatically by using the modules Connect to Mail or Connect to Outlook right into a DocuWare tray or directly into a DocuWare file cabinet. In this further example below we assume that the invoices – paper and original email invoices – are moved to a DocuWare tray where they will be manually checked.

3. Check invoices
Now it is the accounting department’s turn: They will check if the invoice complies with the legal aspects regarding mandatory information that needs to be contained in an invoice. Only then are invoices accepted by the tax authorities, otherwise they need to be modified by the supplier.

4. Archive invoice and start the approval process
The accounting department stores the invoices from the DocuWare tray into a DocuWare file cabinet where they are stored securely and legally compliant. When filing the invoice or later on when working with the document, each time index criteria are automatically assigned. This is important since this index criteria can be used to derive which persons and departments have received and approved each invoice.

In addition, using the DocuWare Intelligent Indexing feature, index information such as supplier name and invoice date can be read automatically directly from the paper invoice or from the original email invoice. This means that these index criteria are already pre-assigned during the filing of a document which facilitates the whole process.

How the invoice is further processed depends on the internal set up of a company. Many times, at this point a cost is recorded within the accounting system so it is clear that an invoice needs to be paid.

5. Approve, post, pay
In many companies, invoices first need to go through an approval process – a workflow – before they can be posted. This lets you align the invoice to the internal purchase process. Or the invoice needs to be routed to the responsible cost centre manager. And there are invoices which have been paid by direct debit or which have been paid privately by an employee. With DocuWare, all these different scenarios can be covered in an optimal way once the specific processes have been analysed thoroughly.

The approval process with DocuWare is based on two different DocuWare modules: Task Manager or Workflow Manager. An invoice after being stored in a file cabinet then appears – with the index criteria – in a list or as a task within the DocuWare client of the respective employee. With a simple click, the total or partial amount can then be approved by an employee.

Whatever the approval process looks like – after the process has ended, the invoice will be posted in the accounting system and then paid. With DocuWare, all data which was gathered during the capturing and approval process can be transferred to the accounting system, eg: the invoice number, invoice date or cost centre. This information can be used as a default for certain fields in the posting step which facilitates the whole process.

Find out more by calling the team on 0161 667 3390 or email sales@doctech.co.uk.