From Invoice Automation to Procure-To-Pay

2 minute read

From Invoice Automation to Procure-to-Pay

For over 30 years, the top goals of senior management for Accounts Payable were:

  1. reduce costs
  2. reduce headcount
  3. reduce cycle time.

Invoice automation has dramatically helped to achieve all three of these goals. Imaging and automated work flow have been key. Other technologies such as optical character recognition and electronic invoicing have also helped.

By accomplishing these goals, senior management and accounts payable could and should focus on additional concerns such as ensuring compliance with laws, regulations, and policies. Leading organizations have realized that to address these concerns, it is necessary to look beyond accounts payable and look at the entire Procure-To-Pay process.

The Procure-to-Pay process begins with someone in your organization having a need for some goods or services. The next step, often referred to as Sourcing, includes the identification of potential suppliers, obtaining additional information and quotes. Supplier Evaluation, Supplier Selection, Supplier Authentication and Contracting are also part of Sourcing. Sourcing is then followed by Ordering which includes Supplier Onboarding or Setup and may include Catalog Management, Requisitions, and Purchase Orders. Various approvals and compliance checks are part of the Ordering process. Delivery and Receiving of the requested goods or services is the next step. This is followed by Invoice Processing activities. The last step is typically Payment Processing.

A comprehensive Procure-to-Pay process should include various types of analyses, controls and checks before, within and after each step. Adding controls and checks can address policy and regulatory compliance, reduce risks and add to a company’s bottom line.

A review of Procure-To-Pay should:

  1. Start with the identification of internal and external stakeholders
  2. Include sourcing and contracting processes and procedures
  3. Identify federal, state, local and international compliance issues
  4. Cover the role of treasury
  5. Address governance issues, especially if you are a public company or not-for-profit
  6. Identify metrics that can be used to assess the current state

These metrics can be used to set goals and measure progress toward achieving them. They should monitor efficiencies such as cost, effort, productivity and timeliness as well as effectiveness such as quality, compliance and impact of changes.

A review of Procure-to-Pay will provide insights to ensure a successful transition to Procure-To-Pay.

author-jon-casher-300About Jon Casher, Guest Author

Jon Casher is the President of Casher Associates, Inc. which specializes in project management, process management and information technology consulting. Jon has worked with hundreds of organizations in the public and private sectors providing guidance and assistance on a broad range of financial operations, accounts payable, accounts receivable, treasury and procure-to-pay topics.

Take the Next Step

We can help you decide pretty quickly whether this would be a good fit for your organization. With 20+ years of experience in automation, we just need about 5 minutes of Q&A. 

Keep Reading

Insights 2024 is over! Here's what we learned.

Greenville’s Business Automation Conference is Over!

Here are 5 things we learned… 1. The power of DEBRIEF Insights opened with a pretty epic presentation by our keynote speaker, Marine F/A-18 fighter pilot instructor, and Top Gun graduate Patrick Houlahan. Beyond discussing his time as a pilot and at Top Gun school, Patrick shared leadership and teamwork

Read More
KeyMark announces Insights 2024.

5 Things to Expect at Insights 2024

What to expect at Insights? We’re officially one week away from Insights 2024, KeyMark’s biggest get-together of the year. For those not in the know, Insights is our annual automation conference, bringing together peers and professionals to discuss the future of business powered by process automation. If you’re already signed

Read More
What do you get with KeyMark's support plans.

What’s the Value in KeyMark Support?

Award-winning Extended Support We’ve extensively covered the value in a value-added reseller, and one of the major claims is the addition of implementation, training, and award-winning lifetime support. But what makes KeyMark support “award-winning”, why are our support teams consistently ranked in the highest echelon of partner programs, and —

Read More