Accounts payable staff are fed up with simply being number crunchers and staring blankly at Excel sheets. They want, and need, better tools to help them become more efficient, flexible and adopt paperless accounting processes.
But the market has heard them, and finance departments are starting to become more digitised in their processes, looking to completely rid themselves of manual processes.
One of the biggest ways in which businesses are doing this is through Invoice Scanning Software, revolutionising the day-to-day working schedule of the accounts payable professional.
At least, for those businesses that have employed such tools, which isn’t as much as you’d think.
One in five businesses across Europe are still primarily using manual processes and Excel sheets in their accounts payable departments, according to our 2021 State Of Automation in Finance report.
Too many businesses are wasting hours using scanners, going through reams of paper in filing cabinets, and trying to learn Excel formulas.
Today’s accounts payable professionals need automated invoice processing that scan, record and digitalise invoices - no matter what format they’re in, such as PDFs or Word documents.
This needs to become the default, not the exception, for businesses.
What is invoice scanning software?
When businesses that don’t currently use invoice scanning software receive an invoice, they would enter the approval process whereby the information is matched - usually by manually searching and finding supplier information and previous invoices - with purchase orders and/or receipt of confirmation.
This can be tricky though, as invoices can come from a range of different suppliers, partners and other businesses as well as in formats that may be alien to many accounts payable departments.
Whereas this might be fine for a small business receiving a few invoices per week, the more the business grows - and therefore the more invoices it receives - the more time is wasted manually processing payment information.
And, although the majority of invoices are sent via Word docs, PDFs, or other scanned images, businesses are missing a trick when it comes to leveraging the information on these invoices - for financial forecasting, resource planning and better business intelligence.
How does invoice scanning software work?
Invoice scanning software (also called Invoice Capture or Recognition Software) uses technology to capture data located on a physical or digital invoice and automate the data entry process.
The technology features Optical (OCR) or Intelligent Character Recognition (ICR) software, or a similar data verification tool, to recognise the relevant data fields from invoices - such as supplier name, address, receipts, and purchase order numbers - processing the information, and turning it into ready-to-use data.
OCR software translates images that have been through scanners and turns these into digital files. It can also be used as a record-keeping system by businesses or used to publish text on a website.
ICR takes this one step further, being able to understand different fonts and styles of handwriting and teach itself over time to become more accurate and detailed, removing the chance of any errors.
Instead of taking up hours every week, these tools mean staff spend literally minutes going through the invoice approval process, typically just to double check the invoice matches information on the purchase order and any receipts.
As we know, time means money in business. The more time accounts payable staff save, the better the outcomes the business will see financially.
What is the best invoice scanning software on the market?
Because of these benefits, many more finance professionals are starting to ask how they can get on board and start approving more invoices in less time with less errors.
But this has led to a flooding of the market. Plenty of invoice scanning tools will help in the scanning and processing of invoices, but what businesses really need is an automated, end-to-end tool that covers the entire approval process while arming them with real-time, actionable data.
The best invoice scanning software will offer a combination of simplicity and power to digitise documents and provide business intelligence, which is why it’s important to consider if the tool integrates with current business systems.
With invoice scanning software integrated with accounting and enterprise resource planning platforms, the synchronisation of documents happens almost instantly in the background, providing a zero-touch process.
The great thing about having a no-touch process is that the intelligent workflows automate data capture, approvals and payments while being entirely scalable, meaning it’s available to all sizes of businesses no matter how many invoices you process every month.
By combining AI, Machine Learning, and robotic process automation (RPA), businesses can gain real-time information while ensuring the matching of purchase orders with invoices with no prior settings needed to be installed.
It’s important to find a partner which offers a seamless integration with your systems, as there’s no need for companies to give up certain features or applications in order to automate their financial processing.
The best invoice scanning software will also be a cloud/Software-as-a-Service solution, able to store historic invoices in the cloud for auditing and security purposes, as well as allow staff to view and approve on the move.
Why Yooz for invoice scanning software?
At Yooz, no one does automation like we do.
When it comes to integrating automated invoice scanning software, our team of experts have more than 20 years’ worth of experience and service, helping businesses with the entire installation process.
We realise that businesses will have their own ERP or financial system of choice, which is why Yooz integrates with more than 250 different software packages, with more being added on a constant basis to make the onboarding process as pain-free as possible.
We also recognise that the experience of the user is key to the success of the platform, especially making it accessible to any user and experience level.
Yooz features invoice scanning software that is easy to use and does not require any training to set up, although we always have a team of experts on standby just in case you need a helping hand.
With Yooz automated invoice scanning, accounts payable staff will feel liberated in their role, able to spend time on more valuable tasks than manual data entry. The platform is also Software-as-a-Service/cloud-based and fully secure, giving them the confidence to keep working wherever they are.
After all, there’s a reason why more than 4,000 businesses worldwide trust Yooz to take care of their invoice scanning processing.