Supervising finances and keeping track of daily payments for business operations is challenging. There are obligations to your suppliers and business operations, such as rent, electricity bills, and employee payroll. As their business gets busier and bigger, owners tend to forget their payables, and if they don’t, manually tracking them makes them prone to errors.
Luckily for business owners, accounts payable software exists. AP automation software solution helps businesses manage their payable processes conveniently.
If you're considering investing in an AP automation solution, we have some of the top features you should look for that will benefit your business.
Invoicing should be the top feature you look for in AP software. The system can tell you how much you need to pay, notify you of your deadlines, and tell which people or businesses you owe money to. There are accounts payable solutions that can handle invoicing efficiently.
Accounts payable software can also store and collect basic details such as addresses, names, account numbers, and terms and conditions for each individual or organization you owe payments to. A software can receive thousands of invoice data and record them from the moment your business receives them and is done with the payment.
Delayed payments are often caused by human error. According to research, almost 47% of business owners find the payment process tedious and lengthy. Business owners don't need to worry about forgetting their dues because AP solutions automate payment processes.
Accounts payable software will help business owners skip the lengthy process. All they need to do is input the specifics like name, amount, and date of payment, and the software will do the rest.
It is not enough that you pay your dues. It is also crucial to keep track of the payments to ensure that you pay the correct amount and not over or under. Many accounts payable systems can generate expense reports for your business.
You can access the data in real-time and use them to analyze your business spending patterns to strategize on areas where you can reduce your expenses and improve savings.
There are instances where businesses get their products from international suppliers. VAT and GST global compliance regulations change from time to time. According to studies, almost 70% of VAT documents from manual processes contain errors. Implementing accounts payable software for your business reduces the risk of errors and makes international invoicing workflow faster.
If your business's accounts payable department does things manually, there is a high chance that you experienced discontinued and confusing workflow. Your workflow probably goes like this: signing in to different tools, looking up in your list of supplier invoices which ones are dues, calculating the amount, manually creating an invoice, and finally sending them.
We won't be surprised after all the things you have to go through, you forget to send the payment. One of the benefits of AP automation solutions is you can do all accounts payable processes in one software—from sending payments and updating the payment status, to recording them.
Receipts are essential business documents, but paper invoices are easy to lose and hard to organize. Accounts payable solutions make the shift to paperless transactions, so all your expense receipts are stored on the cloud, and you access them anytime and anywhere.
Moreover, AP software allows touchless invoice processing, allowing accounts payable managers and teams to manage all your invoices correctly and on time and take advantage of early payment discounts.
Remote Work Compatible
This feature may not be for everybody, but it certainly makes the software more flexible. Whether you're at home, in the office, or anywhere, wouldn't it be easier to see information on your payables whenever you need it, or when you need to generate a quick report or instantly pay a supplier? Cloud-based software options are generally suitable for businesses that involve remote work.
Why Skip Doing Accounts Payable Manually?
Some businesses still prefer to do things the old-fashioned way. Who can blame them? Although it is time-consuming, traditional methods are practically free. But before you decide to go old school, here are some downsides to it.
Prone to Human Error
Human errors are one of the crucial dangers of manually doing accounts payables. From simple arithmetic mistakes to more complex errors and miscommunication on transactions, there are a number of things that can go wrong in doing things manually. Even a tiny mistake can cause enormous consequences, especially for small businesses.
Provides No Real-Time Insights
Reports are essential to assess the status of your business. When you rely on manual reports, you are limited to generating reports in a short time frame. If you want an annual expense report, you'll have to review tons of records and put them together. You'll spend more than a week just doing that.
It will be harder for your business to spot patterns and identify pain points because you can't see the bigger picture. If problems need addressing, you won't be able to spot them before they become significant.
When your business grows, the more data you need to track and record. When you expand your business, you'll probably do business with more vendors, and committing due dates to memory is impossible. Your transactions will increase, and keeping up with them will be more challenging.
The bottom line, a manual accounts payable system is not scalable. In the long run, it will only cause your business more complications.
The Best Accounts Payable Automation Software for Small Businesses
There are hundreds of accounts payable software you can use for your business. Before you make an investment, ensure that the software solution you purchase can meet your business's account payable needs. Here are some of the best AP automation solutions for small businesses.
QuickBooks Online is an all-in-one accounting system. It can do all your essential accounting tasks, including accounts payables. QuickBooks Online has both web-based and mobile versions, and you can use it as a cloud-based or a desktop program.
Here are some of its key features:
- Payment tracking
- Invoice management
- Exporting data to Excel and vice versa
NetSuite is a cloud accounting solution that automates business payment processes such as processing supplier invoices, transaction matching, journal entries, and reconciliations. NetSuite automates the majority of accounting processes, so it eliminates manual tasks and significantly reduces human error.
Here are the top features of NetSuite:
- Purchase orders management
- Vendor management
- Data extraction
TeamPay Accounts Payable Software
TeamPay is an automated invoice processing software that handles routing for approval and payments, provides complete visibility into POs, and creates and pays bills via virtual cards, checks, wire, or ACH.
Here are some of the highlights of TeamPay:
- Automatic recurring payments
- Requisition management
- Workflow management
Airbase is an all-in-one spend management platform that gives businesses control over every dollar they spend. In one automated platform, you can create bills and invoices, schedule and send payments, and sync with your accounting system.
Here are more of its outstanding features:
- Cheque writing
- Electronic fund transfer
- Expense tracking
Outsource Accounts Payable Tasks to Unloop
If accounts payable procedures are slowing you down, maybe it's time to get a professional to handle it. Luckily, Unloop provides accounts payable services to help small business owners. Here is an overview of our accounts payable service:
- Pay Invoices: We guarantee to pay suppliers on time and correctly to maximize your business's cash flow.
- Easy Approval: Just click to approve. From there, our team will process the cheque, ACH, or EFT payment, and automatically record it in your current accounting software.
- Low Exchange Rate: If you have due payments to your international supplier, our services have got you covered. We use tools such as OFX and Wise for international payments and can help you find the lowest rate in the market.
Handling accounts payable properly is vital for a business. If you can't fund your business expenses or pay suppliers, you won't be able to run it smoothly. We hope this article encourages you to invest in accounts payable software.
For more professional accounting services, check out Unloop and book a free call with us today!