The processing of paper documents can be time consuming and costly. Purchase Invoices are a prime example. Invoices are typically received in ‘Accounts’ but often need to be authorised by or queried with a ‘budget holder’ before being posted to the Accounts Payable/Creditors ledger for payment. Accounts time is taken up in recording documents, sending them to authorisers (possibly by external mail) and tracking their progress. Invoices are rarely high priority for authorisers and inter-departmental friction can arise. Invoice Management helps to overcome these problems by providing facilities to scan, store and view invoices and to control and monitor their progress around the organisation.
Invoices received by Accounts are scanned, verified and referenced against the ledger system. Alternatively invoices can be received by email. Where an invoice requires authorisation an electronic form is created and allocated to the appropriate budget holder’s In-tray and the budget holder informed by e-mail. The budget holder can view the electronic form and invoice, add their authorisation or reason for rejection and redirect back to Accounts for processing.
Invoice Management date/time stamps every activity so that reports can be produced showing current status; e.g. volume of unprocessed invoices and their ‘location’ and historical management information, volume of documents processed, elapsed time for approval and processing and the overall workload. Problems can thus be identified and resolved.
Invoice Management can be part of a corporate Document Management solution.