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    Document Management Creates Efficiency in Accounts Payable Processes

    By: Kurt Meemken
    April 1, 2014

    document_management_within_accounts_payableDocument management strategies can successfully achieve significant savings in time and money by automating a labor intensive process. In addition to realizing significant savings, there are other benefits associated with automating process like accounts payable.

    Improvements in Productivity

    The most immediate improvements in productivity offered by document management are that invoices are processed more efficiently, and fewer errors occur. The reduction in errors leads to rapid validation and quicker payment approval. Your staff can use their time to attend to payment processing, not wading through piles of endless paperwork.

    In addition to time savings, document management can open up your physical office space. The number of hefty filing cabinets used for storage can be reduced and you can use the space for more productive purposes.

    The ability to track all digitized versions of documents is also a huge advantage. Documents are handled in a predictable manner, in real time, so discrepancies can be easily spotted and addressed quickly.

    Accuracy in Measuring Performance

    Because errors are reduced and controls are implemented in electronic document management, graphical representation of the entire process, from purchase order generation to the moment in time that a check is finally released, can be seen. The process is easily reviewed and evaluated by management, and bottlenecks and redundant steps are easily eliminated. New processes can easily be added and current processes can be modified. Finally, the workflow generated by document management introduces quantifiable metrics for both vendors and staff that can be particularly useful in performance evaluations.

    Leveraging electronic document management for workflow creates a ‘What You See is What You Get’ result. Each step is transparent and subject to evaluation making it simple to implement performance metrics.

    Vendor Relationship Management

    One of the most critical aspects to the success of any business is managing vendor relationships. Timely payments can lead to early payment discounts, as well as better future price negotiations. Conversely, you’ll be able to identify (and address or eliminate) vendors that don’t perform up to par with electronic document management. Document management software gives you the ability to maintain, grow or prune vendors by making vendor performance easily quantifiable and reviewable. Because of this process simplification and easily accessible vendor-related statistics, the likelihood of regular vendor reviews increases.

    Audit-Related Insurance Controls

    One of the biggest benefits that document management provides is protection from audits. The organization provided by document management software means that everything from purchase orders to paychecks is easily obtained with the click of a mouse. There is no time wasted trying to locate paper documents to verify transactions. Additionally, time isn’t wasted pulling staff aside to locate these resources. (Also note, for enhanced usability: Permissions for staff can be assigned as needed; meaning someone in one area can locate the appropriate documents without having to pull other staff in to locate the appropriate documents.) Auditing processes that used to take weeks can now be performed more quickly and efficiently.

    When properly deployed and implemented, document management has the ability to enable businesses to run more effectively. The accounts payable processes become more streamlined, and less time is consumed when handling these tasks. Resources are managed better and businesses can generate more revenue by improving inefficient processes and saving staff time.

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    Topics: Customer Relationships, Efficiency, document management, productivity