Picture a car dealership, a restaurant chain or a hotel group that has several or even dozens of locations across multiple states. Some of them are owned by the company, others are run by franchise-holders, but they all place orders with their vendors, generate expenses -- and lots of paper that comes with every transaction and delivery.
When the end of a month rolls around, someone inevitably has to catch up with hundreds, sometimes thousands of invoices across the company’s entire geographical footprint. They have to be collected, manually entered or scanned, checked for errors and then coded correctly, routed to the right managers for approval and finally payment. Checks have to be signed while suppliers and employees are waiting for their payment and while the clock is ticking to avoid late fees and dealing with inquiries.
Handling accounts payable for a multi-location organization is a royal and recurring pain, as many companies in the automotive and hospitality industry will attest to. And the situation becomes even more complicated when the company has international locations or deals with international suppliers submitting invoices in more than one currency and varying tax rules. Processing invoices from multiple sites, in short, comes with a slew of challenges:
- High invoice processing costs and the difficulty to process documents quickly enough to avoid penalties
- Invoices coming from everywhere in multiple formats can lead to duplicate payments, lost documents, higher risk of fraud etc
- Difficulty to get an instant overview of your cash flow and to make accurate financial projections
- Complicated approval processes
- Dealing with multiple currencies, and much more
To many AP clerks on the front lines, monthly crunch time still means rounding up piles of invoices, hoping they got them all, stuffing them in a courier pouch to send them to the main office for processing and approval. Waiting for general and department managers to sign off on every check that’s cut. And always be ready to hunt for the strays when an inquiry can’t be easily answered. Yet there is a better way, as Yooz customers such as the burger chain Five Guys, Salsarita’s Fresh Mexican Grill restaurants or the Peterson Auto Group in Boise, Idaho, that’s part of the CDK Global family, have discovered. AP automation in the cloud solves all those pain points, no matter how large or spread-out your network of physical locations is.
AP automation offers a simple solution to ingest any type of invoice right and then there, so artificial intelligence software can understand the contents of each document, automatically assign the correct GL code and route it onward to the right person to review and approve -- all the way to initiating an electronic payment.
Take Peterson Auto Group. Integrating Yooz into their existing ERP system helped them cut the time to enter an invoice from five minutes to 15 seconds and did away with mailing 2,500 paper invoices every month. Invoice approval also takes much less time, dropping from an average of 45 minutes per invoice to just five. Instead of spending two to three hours a day attaching invoices to checks and routing them for signatures, the system now sends the checks for electronic signatures, and funds are electronically transferred. Paying bills this way takes only about 15 minutes a day. The cost associated with cutting checks also dropped from about $5 per check to just $1.43, a savings of nearly $35,000 a year.
Moving your AP process into the cloud has another key advantage. It prepares a company for growth because it makes it easier to bring a new location or franchisee on board in a matter of days. AP automation can be the catalyst for more efficiency as your network grows. It’s an integral part of how to make your team work better and delight more customers.
Find out more about the next generation of AP automation that makes high-performance technology accessible for all and responds to the specific needs of multi-location organizations in the latest Yooz webinar: