Manual and paper processes not only slow down the invoice approval process, but they are also prone to human error. By automating your invoice approval workflow, you create a digitized version of invoices and streamline your entire account payable process.

By automatically directing invoices to the next person in the approval workflow, you can verify and approve invoices more quickly. The right invoice approval workflow system will flag discrepancies between purchase orders and invoices to ensure accurate payment.

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The Benefits of an Automated Invoice Approval Workflow

Besides reducing paperwork and administrative overhead, automating your invoice approval workflow provides a variety of benefits, including:

  • Speeding up approval processes
  • Ensuring a consistent and controlled account payable process
  • Eliminating lost or duplicate invoices
  • Creating a full audit trail of all approvals
  • Eliminating missed payments, inaccurate payments, and late payment penalties
  • Catching errors from manual data entry
  • Creating full transparency into the process at multiple levels
  • Viewing vendor and supplier information in one location
  • Setting notifications and automated alerts for approval
  • Better compliance with regulatory requirements

An automated workflow for invoice approvals also plays a significant role in curbing another serious industry problem: invoice fraud.

Preventing Invoice Fraud

Estimates are that organizations lose as much as 5% of annual revenue to fraudulent billing each year with a median loss of $100,000.

According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), a lack of internal controls contributed to nearly a third of all fraud attempts. The presence of anti-fraud controls and automated invoice approval workflows result in lower fraud losses and faster detection of fraud attempts.

How Automated Invoice Approval for Dynamics AX Works

An automated AP approval process manages your invoices in an organized manner to handle processing more efficiently. There are no more papers sitting on someone’s desk, stuck in their in-basket, or lost somewhere along the way. Everything sits on a centralized dashboard with auto-notifications to keep things moving.

The automated invoice approval process follows this process:

  1. When an invoice is received from a supplier or vendor, it is captured by invoice OCR.
  2. Non-PO invoices are put into the approval workflow.
  3. PO Invoices are matched against purchase orders by the software.
  4. Any pricing discrepancies or missing information is flagged for reconciliation.
  5. Once final approval has been given, the approved invoice is sent to Dynamics AX for recording and payment.
  6. An invoice log and audit trail is created.

This may seem like a simple process, but when you have multiple vendors, hundreds or thousands of invoices, and multiple approvers in the system, it gets challenging quickly to keep things moving.

The Association of Certified Accounts Payable Professionals (ACAPP) Future Payables Process Survey documented the problems that AP teams consistently face. 38% of AP professionals surveyed said the handling of paper invoices was their biggest problem. Another 28% said manually processing information continues to be a significant issue.

To make matters worse, more than a third of those surveyed said the inefficiency in their organizations causes stress while 24% felt it was damaging relationships with suppliers.

Yet, only 8% of companies have instituted a fully automated process for handling invoices.

A Better, Faster, Smarter, and Easier Approval Workflow

Want to learn more about how to create a better, faster, smarter, and easier approval workflow with an AP automation solution for Dynamics AX? Contact the experts at Rillion today and Schedule a Consultation. Let us show you how we can improve your efficiency and save you time and money.