Matthew Tillman, the CEO of OpenEnvoy, notices a familiar pattern among the finance managers and teams he serves. They're all overwhelmed with invoices their finance teams must reconcile manually, and internal process stopgaps aren't working.
Tillman explained in a recent interview to List23' Karen Webster that most organizations have a serious pain point, at least one, if not several.
Digital natives are fascinated by a job in finance but shy away from the joy of seeing invoices processed on screens of paper.
Tillman said the results of those conversations are altering the landscape of accounts payable and accounts receivable. Chief financial officers who would have been reluctant to embrace automation are under more pressure than ever to keep costs under control. They are beginning to understand that investments in process efficiency can pay dividends later.
The market is shifting from 'Can you do these things?' to 'How quickly can you do these things?' Tillman said.
Waste is made by haste.
OpenEnvoy and other software vendors are gaining traction because to a wider trend: relying on inefficient ramps in the “go-go” era when growth was at all costs. Firms are shifting to focus on speeding up margins.
Dupe invoicing is a significant waste reduction strategy, and it goes beyond the seemingly simple task of identifying exact invoice dupes.
"It's the tip of the iceberg for big corporations, because you'd expect to catch duplicate invoices when you spend so much money on the reconciliation package, but it turns out it's just not working," he said. Duplications aren't just when the invoices are identical; it's also about processing each line item.
AP Speed is a Priority.
In times of scarcity, businesses are pressured to accelerate the payment process. Historically, large manual outsourcing businesses handled the auditing and reconciliation of line items against contracts. That takes too long in today's AP environment, according to Tillman. Automation makes the process not only more efficient and effective, but also quicker.
In addition, merging and acquisitions pose a fresh set of challenges. Incompatible processes and legacy enterprise resource planning platforms add to the inefficiency, and the task of sorting it all out often falls on the CFO suite.
Bessere Cash Management
Tillman believes that automation gives businesses better control of their cash as they look for ways to maximize liquidity and manage flows better.
"Solutions that are inherently preventative are going to provide a better return on investment than those that are based on clawbacks and old operational procedures," he said.