Anyone who’s worked in accounts payable will know the fun and games to be had when trying to match supplier invoices to the original purchase order and then checking if what is on it was actually delivered.
Well, for those of you where this is a way of life, SutiAIM might help you get your life back, or at least some of it.
The app uses a unique algorithm to automatically match invoices based on rules and criteria set out by you. This would usually include the purchase order and goods/services received data already in your ERP system. Once matched, notification is emailed to a pre-set list of appropriate recipients for final approval and payment. A nice touch here is that it also highlights any settlement discounts offered giving you the chance to pay within the time limit allowed for the discount and consequently make savings.
The procedure relating to unmatched invoices is completely automated too with email notification sent to suppliers informing them of the reason. This collaboration, along with a chat room function, can significantly improve the time it takes to resolve invoice issues. Once resolved the invoice goes back through the matching function and hopefully on to approval and payment.
Data can be imported and exported between SutiAIM and your ERM system in PDF, CSV and XML formats and a reports function lets you stay up to date with the status of accounts payable. The reports can also let you keep a track on your supplier’s performance which is useful in cases where you have to constantly dispute the documentation.
Having automated invoice matching can not only save money by itself in cutting out manual procedures but could also prevent the duplicate payment of some invoices. In this day and age no business can afford to be that charitable.
I do like the idea of this app and can see it really benefitting businesses that have a huge supplier list and high volumes of payables. Those on the other end of the transaction however might see it as another excuse for delaying payment. I hope the phrase "it’s still going through our matching process" doesn’t end up sounding as corny as "the check is in the post"!