Blog / Accounts Payable December 21, 2023

Six Innovations in AP Technology with Outsized Impact

Accounts payable automation is about capturing, validating, processing, and paying inbound invoices. The market for AP automation tools is expanding, with new fintechs expanding their offerings into Accounts Payable.

Eric Mochalski

Accounts payable automation is about capturing, validating, processing, and paying inbound invoices. The market for AP automation tools is expanding, with new fintechs expanding their offerings into Accounts Payable.

Accounts payable automation is about capturing, validating, processing, and paying inbound invoices. The market for AP automation tools is expanding, with new fintechs expanding their offerings into Accounts Payable.

However, not all automation technology is equally effective. Some providers focus on point solutions, while other offerings are part of a broader platform. With such a diverse market, it can be challenging for businesses to choose the best solution for their needs. Leaders like OpenEnvoy offer “future proof” deployment options, working stand-alone or augmenting other platforms in different parts of the company or as broader IT strategy evolves.

Innovation is driving rapid change in APIA, as you can see in Garter’s 2023 Market Guide for Accounts Payable Invoice Automation Solutions

Some of the most important innovations can have outsized impact on your business:

  1. Intelligent Document Extraction – Traditional OCR invoice capture has limitations that have led companies down other paths. OpenEnvoy takes a different approach, using intelligent computer vision to extract and invoice content at a line-item level in real time. With fully accurate extraction, reliance on time-consuming supplier onboarding and portals can be reduced.
  2. Automated Account Coding – Accurate coding of non-PO invoices is a headache at many companies. OpenEnvoy uses machine learning to improve the accuracy and speed of invoice coding. Using your historical financial data, our automated GL coding software identifies patterns in your transactions, enabling it to assign the correct GL codes. Automating the coding process eliminates errors often found in the business-driven PO process.
  3. Multi-Way Matching and Price Audit – Fully reconciling invoices when prices change has been a time-consuming process. Companies may engage a vendor to identify overpayments after the fact, resulting in clawbacks from suppliers and hefty fees for auditors. OpenEnvoy uses AI to instantly match invoices against contracts, POs, receipts, and transaction records for an “N-way” match. This approach eliminates overbilling and improves supplier relationships by avoiding clawbacks.
  4. Advanced Tolerance Management – Overreliance on POs as the basis of matching leads to complicated integrations and excessive PO changes. OpenEnvoy’s approach–matching the invoice directly against contract, price sheets, and transaction records–avoids this complexity. Advanced tolerances let you decide whether to approve, dispute, or simply short-pay.
  5. Duplicate Invoice and Fraud Detection – Many AP departments and solutions make exclusive use of invoice numbers to identify duplicates. They may overlook duplicate line items across multiple invoices and other serious issues. OpenEnvoy’s real-time audit analyzes invoice contents and formats to avoid losses to duplicates and fraud.
  6. Full Visibility into Spend and Supplier Compliance – Finance and procurement departments may struggle to get visibility into spend, supplier performance, and agreements across their companies, especially if they use multiple ERP systems and/or P2P platforms. OpenEnvoy provides a single pane of glass by working with the company’s existing tech stack to provide full visibility without the need to “rip and replace” existing investments.

As you consider the challenges facing your company in the future, vendors who deliver these six innovations can help you improve profitability, ensure compliance, and optimize cash flow. The best solutions deploy quickly and show step-function adoption curves, paying for themselves within a twelve month period.

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