Guest Post: Automated Payment Systems

I have decided to move the guest post of this week to Wednesday from the usual Monday. I hope nobody gets upset about that. If you are upset, hopefully this excellent post by Erick about automated payment systems will make up for it. Enjoy!

At least some of the benefits of accounts payable automation are obvious to anyone who runs a business. It will greatly increase productivity and efficiency by sparing workers from having to sort through innumerable documents just to find the one that they are looking for. However, some business owners may not be aware that using automated payment systems can also significantly improve the security of a company’s finances, as well as save money by eliminating repetitive tasks and bypassing the postal system. Here is a closer look at how switching to AP automation can benefit your business.

  • SAVE MONEY BY ELIMINATING CHECKS: Sending checks through the mail can quickly eat up your budget. For instance:

    • Every check costs at least $2.00 to print and mail.
    • Add to this cost the price for the staff you will need to manually process checks and other documents.
    • Add on top of that the fact that check fraud surpasses the billion dollar mark easily each year, and you have a lot of money that could be going down the drain right now.
  • You can eliminate many of these problems by using an automated clearing house network to handle your payments. With the aid of ACH processing software, you can move money from your bank account directly to the supplier’s bank account, and it costs only pennies per transaction. For each payment the payment information is automatically supplied (whether it is printed or stored electronically).

  • SAVE TIME BY CONSOLIDATING DOCUMENTS: The accounts payable process will inevitably involve tons of documents. All these purchase orders, bills, invoices, settlements, etc. have to make it into one file eventually. By hand, this task sounds nightmarish – imagine sorting through thousands of papers, through dozens of filing cabinets, trying to find which ones belong together. Rather than having a building littered with cabinets and containers, you could consolidate all these documents into an electronic storage space. An accounts payable document management system would eliminate the headache of dealing with all that and streamline your accounts payable process. Consider some of the benefits:

    • Documents could be automatically indexed and filed as soon as they are input into the system.
    • Costs could be cut as you would need less accounts payable staff due to the automation process.
    • If the physical copy of a document is lost, you will have an electronic backup. In fact, you will probably no longer even need the physical copy.