Information governance and content management have become two of the most important aspects of corporate oversight in the past few years, especially since global data volumes began to explode. Although many businesses are still relying upon traditional methods to manage information and go through common procedures such as data capture, more are starting to realize the value of automation software that reduces the strain placed on myriad employees.
Studies have indicated that firms which eliminate data entry wherever and whenever possible will enjoy several advantages in accounting, reporting and more, including fewer inaccuracies, stronger efficiency and bolstered engagement among employees who would otherwise be tasked with handling these matters. There are plenty of good places to begin when working to deploy automation solutions, including e-invoicing and data capture, while the best strategies will be customized to the needs of each specific business.
Accounts payable made easy
Gary Brooks, writing for Intelligent Utility, recently asked his readers why they are manually entering data for utility bills, affirming that multi-facility companies might have the most to gain from automating these procedures. Citing some research he conducted, he pointed to a very large organization that has almost exclusively manual procedures in place for utility bill-related data entry, and explained that this has not led to the most efficient and accurate operations possible.
Brooks noted that utility bills are notoriously data-rich, with a variety of elements on each one that could certainly be used for analysis and evaluation, should that information be readily available and accurate. According to the author, human error, antiquated information and data that only tells part of the story are some of the risks associated with manual entry strategies, and all of these can be reduced with the help of automated tools.
At the end of the day, deploying these solutions is simply a best practice, especially when looking at the need for accuracy in accounts payable and receivable.
Other areas for improvement
Businesses should look across departments to find processes within everyday operational functions that might benefit from automation tools, and this can really span a large area. For example, AP invoice processing, expense report processing and sales order processing will take advantage of data extraction technology and workflow technology, making for more effective decision-making and analysis.
At the end of the day, decision-makers must ensure that they have a strong knowledge of which areas might benefit from automation before deploying the solutions.