5 Ways That AP Automation Helps Accountants and Strengthens Your Business Process
The finance department has more than enough to worry about for most companies. Their needs are hugely important to the success of any business, not to mention to avoiding liability from bad accounting practices. But in spite of their unquestionable importance, they haven’t always received the type of support that would make their jobs faster and easier.
Business process improvement software offers a considerable advantage to accountants trying to better manage their organization’s spend and make more accurate projections into a new quarter. Determining the viability of growth options and necessary investments is critical to the ongoing success of any business. Historically, this burden has fallen on accounting and finance.
Changing technology is starting to make things easier in ways many CPAs didn’t fully expect. Accessible software with configurable, intelligent processes doesn’t just simplify life for finance departments – it also allows for better use of company resources and a smarter future. Using software tools like AP automation can help accountants guide businesses of all sizes and industries into the future. But don’t just take our word for it. Here are five examples of how AP automation helps accountants while also strengthening your business process.
Better Audit Data Analysis
Just the word “audit” is enough to put an entire organization on the edge of their seats. But for accountants, audits are a particularly grinding process. Gathering information seems to take twice as much time as actually conducting the audit. Manual processing and decentralized storage are major contributors to these issues.
Utilizing an AP automation software is the answer. The automated reporting available will greatly expedite the financial analysis process. Trying to gather all of the necessary information from varying sources is usually labor-intensive and requires assistance from other departments or IT resources. For reports that need to be run daily, weekly, or monthly, the lost time in data mining adds up quickly. NextProcess includes a custom reporting option that lets accountants quickly gather all the information they need to manage financials effectively.
More Accurate, Accessible Information
Data entry can make or break your financial reporting. Missing important information creates huge problems and having errors in your data is even worse. Creating an airtight data acquisition process ensures that you have an excellent starting point to unparalleled reporting. And when you’re starting with accurate information, it makes every step in the process much more effective.
Automation in data capture processes is the way of the future. Using OCR and KFI technology, NextProcess is able to create validations and “sanity checks” to validate different pieces of information. Our proprietary data capture technology ensures over 99% accuracy on every document scanned. Plus, business intelligence can be programmed around specific data points to maximize the power you can harness in your data.
Automatic Compliance Enforcement
The only route to true business process improvements is by finding a way to manage compliance. Too many manual processes don’t just waste valuable time. They also reduce transparency and create issues in transaction management. In addition, difficulty tracking payment approvals opens up potential liability and creates unnecessary complications in everything from audits to process documentation.
The advent of invoice tracking technology and automated reporting can greatly simplify procedural compliance. NextProcess accounts payable automation software package is an easy way to require purchases, invoices, and payments to go through a solidified procedure. The opportunity to create exception processes exists but it can be tightly managed by key decision makers in the organization.
Opportunity To Strengthen Security
Modern accountants regularly face issues involving fraud prevention and cyber security. This is one of the biggest problems accountants and companies face and yet it’s often overlooked until there’s a data breach or large theft of some type. But it’s much better to take steps to prevent a problem before it happens. Automating your system gives you the perfect opportunity to re-examine security policies in the accounts payable department.
When you’re trying to prevent accounting fraud, data breaches, and other security violations constant vigilance is essential. You’ll need anti-fraud and cyber security policies in place along with trusted employees keeping an eye out for anything unusual. Automation can help with enforcing security policies and with making it easier for accountants to spot suspicious activity.
Improved Employee Retention
Though it doesn’t seem directly related to automation, attracting and retaining good employees is one of the biggest challenges facing the accounting profession right now. Baby boomers are retiring and younger employees have a reputation for job-hopping, so it’s vital that you have a plan in place for bringing in and keeping accounts payable employees.
Employees in the millennial generation and younger expect technology to play a role in their work. They’ll likely be more comfortable staying with a company that’s leveraging the best available technology to support their accountants. And if your department does need to hire new employees, the way automation software enforces company policy makes it easier to get new hires working with the system quickly.
Maintaining audit transparency, gaining valuable insight into processes, enforcing policy, increasing security, and working with AP employees has never been easier. And the opportunities for improvement exist across every industry and company size. Every organization can benefit from improving their business processes and supporting their accountants.
Accounts payable is the department that governs money leaving a company. You can’t afford to ignore how important this is to your organization’s overall financial health. It’s time to give accountants the tools they need to successfully navigate the modern financial world. Contact NextProcess today to set up a free demo of our accounts payable software and get started equipping your business to meet today’s financial challenges.