What is the future of Accounts Payable?

In many posts and webinars published on our blog, we have covered many of the uses and advantages provided by OpenText Vendor Invoice Management for SAP Solutions (VIM)and how with new versions of the product come new functionalities that give the Accounts Payable department with greater agility in the management of the company’s purchase invoices., automating processes that would be much more time-consuming and laborious. The question therefore arises as to what will happen to this department whose functions are affected, for the better, by new technologies.

The future of Accounts Payable departments

We will start by saying that thanks to technology, Accounts Payable workers today spend more time working at a computer rather than with paper invoices.

But, what will the role of AP Processors be like in the next 10 years if the whole process becomes automated?

This accounts payable automation process is not just a luxury for large companies, but small and medium-sized businesses can access the same functions with cost-effective tools.

Some of the results of AP automation are that it reduces costs and improves the efficiency of the department, making it a more strategic and data-driven team.

These automations and new ways of working such as with data in the cloud make us take new security measures and improve others, making accounts payable up to date with new security threats, performing daily bank reconciliations, using more secure communication channels with the supplier/vendor, and being the first to notice if something goes wrong to alert the accounting, IT, FI department.

All this indicates that the role of the Accounts Payable will be transformed:

  • More functional, responsible for explaining reports to business and making recommendations on how to improve.
  • More agile and digital, so there will be more time to analyse data and look for growth opportunities.
  • More proactive than reactive, identifying potential problems and preventing them from occurring or becoming significant.

Impact of Accounts Payable department automation

This automation of the Accounts Payable department will be noticeable in:

  • Less manual data entry, thus avoiding errors.
  • Increasing the flow of information by being able to obtain reports in real time.
  • Automatic alerts, notifications, reminders that will enable Accounts Payable employees to flag problems, including invoice fraud.

In view of the constant change that Accounts Payable is undergoing with the digitalisation and automation of invoice management processes, it is necessary that the department also changes to adapt to the new times:

  • The skills of employees should be diversified to further digitise Accounts Payable.
  • Accounts Payable remodelling in data analytics, cloud storage, data security, payment queries…
  • Accounts Payable professionals must be willing to learn new technology skills to prepare them to become strategic partners.

At Brait, we can assist in change management to implement new technologies such as OpenText Vendor Invoice Management that will help companies make the leap to greater productivity and take advantage of all the benefits of automating the Accounts Payable process.

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