Accounts Payable automation still provides tremendous value to many organizations decades after such automation tools as OCR and electronic workflow were developed. With the advent of vendor portals, supplier portals, dynamic discounting, electronic invoices, advanced data capture tools, document assembly tools and supplier networks, AP automation took another big step in reducing costs and enabling vendor self-service. Most recently robotics, artificial intelligence (AI) and block chain technology, have appeared on the scene with promises of further automation and enhanced security. But adoption for these latest technologies has not yet seen the explosive growth that the evangelists of of those technologies predicted. For many these systems seem out of reach due to the high cost, complexity and significant in-house IT overhead they require.
Today as cloud hosted applications are becoming more ubiquitous, AP automation, including many of the sophisticated technologies that were out of reach in the past, has become more affordable and available to many more companies.
Not all cloud based AP automation applications are the same and it would be wise to research alternatives that fit your specific goals before signing onto that “shiny new toy” with all the fancy bells and whistles! Here are some of the questions you should be asking when evaluation AP automation solutions:
- Is the solution a multi-tenant shared application or single-tenant cloud hosted application configurable to your specific requirements?
- Will I own of all of the data and will my company have access to that data 24x7x365?
- Can I easily add functionality and change configurations without going through the costly process of paying for the application provider to build or waiting months for the next major release?
- If I decide to change applications and move to a different platform or solution, how easy will it be to move my data?
- Can the AP solution easily integrate with my back-end ERP systems, no matter what they are?
These are just a few of the questions you should be asking to insure whatever solution you choose will meet your specific business needs (not the masses), give you real time, unrestricted access to your data, and provide the flexibility needed as you grow and change in this dynamic economy. ICG’s cloud hosted solutions can meet your needs for today and tomorrow! A partial list of ICG vendor management automation solutions include:
- Vendor Portal/Supplier Portal
- Vendor Onboarding/Supplier Onboarding
- Dynamic Discounting
- Workflow Management (rules based, email based, or manual)
- Data Capture/Document Capture/Document Assembly
- Non-PO and PO Invoice Processing
- remote approvals
- exception processing
- Electronic Invoice Submission
- Web-based Payment Inquiry
- Payment Dispute Submission & Tracking
- Online Payment Requests
- PO Dispatch & Update
- ERP Integration
- Dashboards, Reporting and Robust Search Engine
Recent significant events like the pandemic and the increasing frequency of cyber attacks on businesses of all sizes have caused decision makers to start evaluating technologies that support remote or hybrid financial back-office operations while at the same time tightening security of data and systems. ICG’s solutions are designed to operate in remote environments utilizing highly secure, cloud-based financial back-office applications.