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Half of UK businesses still on manual invoicing

Data management company
Formscan says that 48% of
companies it surveyed are still inputting and processing invoices manually,
though half have automated their accounts receivable processes. According to
Formscan, those without an automated accounts receivable and accounts payable
system may be missing out on cost savings of up to 80% on the cost of invoice
processing.

The most striking aspect of the survey is the emergence of mid-market
companies as leaders in the automation of invoicing systems. Companies with 250
to 1,000 employees are ahead of larger companies in accounts payable and
accounts receivable automation, the survey suggests. This could be because the
mid-market will often comprise businesses that are under considerable pressure
from larger, weightier competitors and which therefore urgently need to
streamline costs, but are small enough to implement such changes without massive
overheads or business interruption.

That said, it is not essential to implement a system to automate these
processes from end to end, as savings can be found from introducing elements of
automation to a manual process.

“There is no need to implement total e-invoicing – hybrid systems can
introduce high levels of automation into AP/AR which deliver substantial cost
savings and far greater transparency of financial reporting,” says Formscan MD
Chris Haden. “With 90% of invoicing still performed through paper documents,
hybrid solutions are also needed to manage the transition from paper to
electronic documents over the coming decades.”

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