How to break the endless cycle of paper invoice management

When invoice management and your exercise regimen become a little too similar, you know something’s got to give.


The average company managing a paper invoice process spends $23 on each invoice, including the time, labor and costs associated with printing and storing that piece of paper. Multiply that figure by the number of invoices you process, and accounts payable suddenly seems like an overly burdensome cost.


And there’s nothing like an audit to amplify the many drawbacks of paper invoices. If you had to pull up a few aged invoices asap, how many reams would you have to rummage through?  A worst-case scenario, as one Concur client discovered, is a stressful trek to an offsite archiving facility, followed by hours of rattling through rows of dusty file cabinets. 


Think about change

When you’re facing a closet (or warehouse) full of paper, it can be daunting to contemplate a change. The first step is to evaluate the costs associated with doing business the way you do today. The exact costs are unique for each company, but once you itemize the time and costs associated with your processes, you have the start of a business case for making automation a priority.


Ditch the file cabinets (and bicycle)

Automating invoice processing dramatically reduces the average cost per invoice from $23 to $3.41.  (Aberdeen Group: AP Invoice Management in a Networked Economy) So if your company processes 500 invoices per month, you could be saving a minimum of $114K per year.


Aside from the direct costs savings, automating your invoice systems offers the following benefits:


Faster/easier audit process – When your invoices are trapped in years’ worth of filing cabinets, audits can sideline your whole team for weeks, wading through piles of paper. With an automated invoice system on your side, everything you need can be pulled in minutes.


Strategic cash flow – Yes, you will be able to pay invoices quicker, but it’s really about paying invoices on a schedule you choose. Capture early payment discounts or hold on to your cash—when you’re automated, you are in control.


Visibility into your spend – When your invoices automatically enter your system, you have instant top-down view of your financial standings at all times, no lag time for scanning, printing, approving and cycling down the file cabinet aisles.


As the rest of businesses processes automate, accounts payable and invoice processing should be no different. Think—would you ever go back to doing payroll by hand? If that’s inconceivable, imagine how you’ll feel after your invoice processes are automated.


As your company increasingly automates businesses processes, accounts payable and invoice management should be along for the ride. Would you ever go back to doing payroll by hand? If that’s inconceivable, stop spinning your wheels in the paper chase and watch this two-minute video.


See how Concur Invoice makes automation easy.

Find out the true cost of invoice management today! 

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