AP management automation enables users to handle every received vendor invoice in an easy and accurate way. In the case of electronic invoices or even paper invoices, it doesn’t matter if it is matched to a PO or not. You no longer have to worry about the attachments and/or of sudden purchases. With AP management automation you can save a significant amount of the costs, because you can handle all items precisely, with our on-demand or in cloud solutions.
Three important solutions are essential in successful AP management:
- ICR/OCR technology makes it possible to check and validate the entire content of received invoices
- A well-structured workflow that establishes a connection between procurement and accounting systems
- Digital signing and timestamp technologies enable validation of e-invoices and conversion of paper-based invoices to an electronic format
OCR and ICR
OCR (Optical Character Recognition) and ICR (Intelligent Character Recognition) technologies together make it possible to get data from any type of document.
These documents could be:
- structured (bill, requisition or other form)
- half-structured (invoice, PO, delivery note)
- unstructured (free text format, contract, letter)
Structured documents contain different data, but these types of documents have the same structure and same data in a specified place (e.g.: Contracting company’s full name, price, etc.). Data and characters in these specified places can be recognized by OCR technology. In addition to this basic feature, ICR provides an intelligent solution to check if the recognized characters and data are valid or not (e.g.: numbers instead of letters), so it helps you to convert paper-based information to electronic data. This technology is the most popular solution for processing census results.
Getting electronic data from a half-structured document is a way more complex process. In order to get the data in a safe and effective way, in the 21st century having a simple OCR tool and scanning some specified places on the documents are not enough to solve the problem. These types of documents require full-page character recognition with more synchronized OCR motors that are able to interpret the recognized data lines (keywords, masks) and are able to verify them in the background. For example, when the OCR finds the tax ID number of a supplier on the invoice, it is capable of checking if it’s an already existing supplier of the company or not. After identifying the keywords and running the algorithm, an operator checks the items to see if they are correct or not, to ensure the data enters the appropriate approval workflow.
Retrieving data from unstructured documents is the pinnacle of this technology. The artificial intelligence of the system recognizes the type of the received documents and automatically forwards it to the right place of the system with all of its data. Imagine a free-text format contract loaded with text and you would like to retrieve important data (such as names, dates, prices, etc.) from, that you have to validate and place in another system that comes in line in the workflow.
Regardless of the document type, retrieving data from them is handled in a modularly built, scalable, integrated surface which fixes, classifies, and checks the pictures or data of the received printed or electronic documents. The solution can be complemented with a standard, integrated conversion option.
After improving the effectiveness of data recognition from 70-80% to 100%, the ICR system forwards the picture of the documents with the collected data to the appropriate place in the workflow. In comparison to manual filing, using OCR and ICR technologies with 80% of effectiveness provides four times higher amount of proceeded documents. Our solutions are capable of receiving and filing any type of electronic or paper-based document.
Digital Mailroom Automation
Without exception, every received document is scanned by OCR intelligent content recognition and is classified by predetermined rules. (Some companies can even have 450-500 different types of documents that have to be filed) With this solution, 80% of costs can be saved by automating document receiving and forwarding them to the appropriate place. To intensify the effectiveness of the workflow and distribution of the workload, Digital Mailroom Automation can be integrated with the current IT infrastructure and approval workflow. Our similar Answer automation (based on the same technology) makes it possible to send answers automatically according to the content of the received mails. This solution can reduce your process cost by 50%!
Physical storage of paper-based documents, and for data search, is the cause of increasing cost in logistics and operation. In order to reduce these expenses and making every document electronically accessible, many companies implemented document management and digitizing systems. These rudimentary methods solve the problem of accessing documents, but don’t include the long-term safety and space-saving archiving, because the original copy of confidential documents cannot be shredded. Authentic conversion is a modern solution for that problem. This process creates a digitized copy of paper-based documents with unrestricted content, authenticated origin and a long-term legibility. These principles are guaranteed by electronic signature and timestamp. Received documents should be electronically archived with their pictures and data right after the authenticated conversion and data extraction.
Solutions represented by DOQSYS, provide full automation in AP management from opening the received post to the final check of the accountant and financial approval. Users have the ability to approve or reject supplier invoices without history, make completion certificates or account it, and all these functions are available for them on an easy to use, transparent surface. The system has a flexible workflow for unique or preconceived approval flow and it is able to match the invoices with their history automatically. In the case of an invoice without history, the approver gets a notification via email: by clicking on the link in the email, the approver can log into the approval surface through an internet browser.
Appropriate users can manage the completion certificates, accounting, approval workflow and they are even capable of searching for invoice history and reports. Accountant users are the final approvers at the end of the approval chain. The system forwards the data in a specified format to the company’s system based on predetermined rules (ERP, document management) where the invoices are paid. One of the biggest advantages of DOQSYS approval flow is that invoices are not physically moved, so there is no extra cost, because there is no need to store paper-based documents in the office, and all invoices can be archived at one place. With this solution, the time for approval workflow can be reduced to only 1-2 days. Every step of this process can be found in the history so it makes it reportable, transparent and easily auditable. Supporting data extraction with extra database provides a much higher level of effectiveness in AP management in comparison to the manual processes. Every document, contract or PO can be attached to the digitized invoice and stored together.
Approval of recurring invoices: The application provides an opportunity to approve and account the cyclically recurring invoices. Preferred templates for invoice processing for bookkeeping can be saved and used again in the next cycle. The system allows for exceptions that make it possible for an invoice to skip the approval chain if it meets some requirements in contracts or in other terms. A modern AP management and approval system can both manage electronic and paper-based invoices.
There are two widespread types of receiving an e-invoice:
- Receiver uses inner resources to make a system for receiving e-invoices in any format. In this case, the company takes a risk of software development cost.
- Receiver outsources this function to a service provider, who provides a free platform for the supplier where they can transfer their e-invoices. After processing different types of e-invoices, the service provider transfer the usable data to the receiver in a safe and transparent way.
Both solutions are legal and based on the company’s IT strategy.