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What's The Deal With Paperless Invoice Processing?

Rachel Tilley Author: Rachel Tilley

Paperless invoice processing might not be a hot topic for everyone, but for those working hard in Finance, it's a much preferred and less stressful option than having to deal with endless piles of paper work. 

We know this because our clients and prospects tell us.

The Problems Of Dealing With Paper

Paper can be lost, the costs of using it mount up and it's overuse is damaging for the environment - these things we all generally know. 

But there are some issues we get told about that weigh heavily on the shoulders of employees which when added up over time, cause unnecessary stress while lowering moral. 

Paper Archives And Finding Documents

For those individuals in a business who are processing hundreds if not thousands of paper documents every month in the form of invoices, delivery notes, contracts etc. it can become over whelming.   Even with the most rigorous processes in place, as the volume of paper increases, so too can the problems. 2 Stack of Paper

It becomes someone's job to search through it all, creating boring and monotonous work when they should be doing something much more meaningful.

We've been told about the use of portacabins bought solely for paper storage.  Based outside where it's cold and damp, where employees spend unpleasant hours searching for that archived piece of information.  There is also the physicality of lifting and looking through archive storage which isn't enjoyable for anyone.

Leaving Work On Time 

Leaving work on time is something we all want to happen more often than not, and of course there are always occasions when staying late is required and many of us accept that. 

But when it happens because outdated processes cause problems that slow employees down through no fault of their own, they can be left frustrated and annoyed.

The Stress Of Responsibility

Being responsible for accurately processing hundreds of important documents is stressful.  Contracts can be highly sensitive in relation to personnel, or highly lucrative when associated with winning new business, and invoices are how an organisation gets paid! 

The pressure of dealing with these types of documents can be huge.  Add errors and lost paper into that mix and there is a recipe for disaster.

How Will Paperless Invoice Processing Help

Paperless invoice processing increases the speed that invoices move through the business.  By removing paper and all the physical touch points, delays and errors are greatly reduced.

Documents are stored digitally so lengthy searches for information are removed, staff get the time back to complete their tasks, get out the door on time and stress is reduced as the software takes the strain. 

So How Does Paperless Invoice Processing Work?

Paperless invoice processing can work slightly differently from business to business, depending on bespoke requirements or processes.  The below infographic explains how a standard process can work.

Storing Digital Invoices 

Invoices start and end their journey digitally and are safely stored in an electronic document management system.  Invoices received electronically can be sent straight to the system via an email while any paper invoices are scanned in.

This means invoices are available to view immediately to authorised users across the business, regardless of whether they are at home, in the office or out on site.  Document searches take seconds and employees can access all information from their computer or mobile device.

Accurate Data Capture

Data capture

Once in the system, relevant information is captured from the invoice including supplier name, reference numbers, values, dates etc.  The invoice is then tagged and stored against this information and becomes the search terms used by employees to find a document.

Accurate data capture means invoices can be matched with other relevant documents including purchase orders and delivery notes and linked within the system.

Manage Approvals

With touchless invoice processing approval workflows are initiated when an invoice enters the system.  It automatically sends an email notification to an approver to make them aware there is a document for review.  They will either approve or decline the invoice, which then moves onto the next stage of the processes.

Should the approver be away on holiday or the invoice amount is over their approval limit, the system will automatically notify another approver.

Delays caused by waiting for approvals are a thing of the past!  Increasing the speed an invoice moves through the organisation speeds up the entire process.  Getting out of the door on time is no longer a problem!  




Invoice - paperless invoice processing

Download the infographic and share with your team from our free resources page!

Task Lists

Task lists are generated within the paperless system so users can clearly see how many tasks they have to do.  If they're not logged in they will get an email notification. 

paperless invoice task list

A visual indicator of tasks means an employee's work load is clear for them to see, helping to reduce stress and understand exactly what is required from them.

Software Integration

The paperless system can be integrated with any ERP or finance package so relevant information is automatically sent to it.  Employees no longer have to manually type information from an invoice into the software which is where errors can occur.  Not only does the integration mean errors are minimised, but so is the time spent on admin. 

Co-ordinating the data between different processes and software provides a single source of truth and means all systems act like one.

This is another example of how paperless invoice processing speeds up processes.  Employees can enjoy their lunch break rather than working through it.

Secure Document Storage

invoice padlock

Once document workflows are complete, invoices are matched with purchase orders and payments authorised, digital documents are securely stored in a centralised system. 

Bespoke access rights are applied so only authorised users can view or edit specific document types.  Retention rules are applied to ensure documents aren't kept for longer than they should be.

No more searching through cold and damp storage facilities or paying unnecessary storage costs.

Why Change To Touchless Invoice Processing?

Or should the question be why haven't you done it yet?  Moving away from paper based processes and onto a digital one will only ever help your organisation move forward

We understand changing the way employees work can at first seem like a daunting task, but of all our clients, none regret making the move to a paperless office.  Hearing just how difficult and frustrating processes become for employees spurs us on to help more organisations that must be facing the same challenges.

Our experience in automated invoice processing and paperless solutions sets us apart.  With our technical know how we fulfil bespoke requirements on budget and within agreed timescales.

Get in touch.

Chat with us about how we will help your organisation and it's employees save time, money and stress.

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Contact us now for more information 0161 647 7040