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The Current Landscape of Invoice Processing and Its Challenges

Gone are the days of manually processing invoices with paperclips, file folders and post-it notes.

The invoice processing landscape has undergone significant changes in recent years due to advancements in technology, including e-invoicing, cloud and AI (artificial intelligence). Traditionally, invoice processing involved manual entry, which was a time-consuming and error-prone task.

Today, companies are adopting digital solutions to streamline their invoice processing workflows. Automated accounts payable (AP) processes offer significant benefits, including faster processing times, improved accuracy, and increased visibility.

However, despite the move to digital, some challenges persist. Lingering legacy processes, complex workflows and a lack of agility within the account processing team can create obstacles for efficient invoice processing.

The Roadblocks in Automated Invoice Processing

  1. Data Entry with Inconsistent File Formats
  2. Businesses may receive invoices in different formats, making it difficult to automate the data extraction process. The accuracy of the extracted data also needs to be verified to ensure information is recorded correctly in the system. Data errors can result in processing delays and potential payment disputes.

  3. Clunky Integration with Existing Systems
  4. Integrating invoice automation platforms with existing systems like ERP (enterprise resource planning) can pose significant challenges due to differences in data formats, validation rules and communication protocols. Incomplete or faulty integrations can lead to errors, delays and system failures.

  5. Approval Bottlenecks
  6. Invoices need to be approved by the appropriate personnel before payment can be made. However, manual approval workflows can be slow, and invoices can get stuck in the approval process, resulting in delayed payments.

  7. Increased Risk of Fraud
  8. Invoice fraud is a growing concern. Fraudsters can create fake invoices or alter legitimate invoices to redirect payments to their accounts. Organizations need to have robust fraud prevention measures in place to ensure that only legitimate invoices are processed.

  9. Continually Changing Regulations
  10. Compliance and regulations around invoice processing are constantly evolving and can be complex. Businesses need to consistently ensure they are complying with relevant regulations and their processes are up to date.

The Solution: Intelligent Automation

Intelligent automation transforms invoice processing by utilizing advanced technologies to automate the entire workflow from data extraction to payment, resulting in significant improvements in efficiency, accuracy and cost savings.

Kofax's AP Agility, our intelligent automation solution, uses advanced technologies including artificial intelligence, machine learning, and robotic process automation to automate the entire invoice processing workflow.

  1. Simplified data entry - With capabilities to extract data from invoices in any format, businesses can capture, digitize and extract key data from any financial document in 30+ languages.
  2. Easy integration - AP Agility was built and designed to integrate with a variety of ERPs and other critical platforms for fast and easy integration in any organization.
  3. Streamlined approval workflows - Customized, dynamic workflows can be created to manage exceptions, approvals and other collaboration points within the AP process.
  4. Secure by design - The 3-way match process helps eliminate fraud with an AI-assisted system that automatically scans POs, reports and invoices for relevant information before evaluating the match according to the rules defined by your business.
  5. Always compliant - Kofax ensures data protection by offering robust security, compliance and privacy programs across our product suite.

Invoice processing has evolved significantly over a few short years, but there are challenges to overcome before organizations can realise the full potential of end-to-end AP automation.

With the help of intelligent solutions, businesses can reap the benefits of a streamlined, efficient and compliant AP process. Kofax's AP Agility is one such solution that can help organizations achieve truly smart workflow experiences.

Ardent Partners’ State of ePayables 2023: Paving the Way for a Smarter Future
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