Switching from Manual to Accounts Payable Automation - The story of how John convinced his company to give AP automation a crack

Sales & Marketing
February 24, 2021
2 min read

If you are researching Accounts Payable Automation, then you have probably heard the claim that it can reduce the cost involved in paying invoices by 80%. What exactly does that mean? In today's blog I would like to tell this story.

Does that mean that poor John in Accounts Payable is getting fired, and that a software program is replacing him? Is that how these amazing cost savings are being generated? Thankfully no! John from the AP department is going to be just fine, and is actually quite excited about adopting automation software because it means he won’t be a bored keyboard monkey typing in page-after-page of invoice data all day. John will be freed up to work on his higher-level strategy which is his passion, tackle all the important human decision-making problems, analyse the new data that is being generated, and quite possibly figure out how the company can make greater improvements and further future proof the business. John is happy, or at least he will be if his company gets on board with making the switch to AP automation.

John is going to be brave and put an argument forward to management for adopting accounts payable automation, these are his points:

  • You remember that time when I mistyped the decimal place, and we overpaid a supplier $10,000? Do you remember all the drama that followed recovering that money? We can avoid future stuff-ups like that. Thanks for not firing me by the way!
  • According to my research, it’s costing us around $15 to process each of our invoices manually, what if I could get that down to around a dollar per invoice in 6 months?
  • Do you know how sometimes I’m a bit late with the financial reports? What if I could provide better comprehensive analysis and insights into our financial data – and have my reports sent in like clockwork?
  • If we had better end-to-end visibility of the invoice process, from reception to payment, I would be able to see where there is room for improvements. Currently, it’s just an endless paper stack on my desk.
  • What if we could shorten the invoice processing lead & approval time, and get discounts from our suppliers for faster payments?
  • What if we could remove the complexity in every step of the workflow to increase productivity and reduce our operating costs?
  • What if we could implement a simple solution that works with what we already use and that can protect us from fraud, mistakes and ultimately help us go completely paperless?

John got the effect he wanted from his pitch. It was met with lots of nods of agreement, and a simple “Let’s look into AP automation further” from management. John set up an appointment the following week with ACMO for a comprehensive run thought of costs and timelines. Within weeks, the new accounts payable automation system was in place, and the companies very first invoice was captured, processed, approved, and paid without any human intervention.


If this story gives you hope that AP automation can work for your company, and you are wanting to reduce your invoice processing costs and be an AP department hero like John, we can help. We can help you pitch the return on investment to your company and the benefits of moving to an AP automation solution, please contact us today, as we would love to help you accomplish. more.

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