Paper-reliant Businesses "Extra Vulnerable" in Tough Economic Times

Millions of working hours will be wasted in 2012 by a continued reliance on outdated manual data entry as accounts payable (A/P) professionals delay their purchase of automated document systems, AnyDoc Software has warned.

Jason Cropper, UK business development director at AnyDoc Software, said that while paper documents such as invoices, purchase orders and remittances were “comforting and familiar”, the inefficiencies and lost productivity associated with paper will make businesses even more vulnerable in an already uncertain economy.

“One of the key drains upon staff resources is the time-consuming and repetitive manual task of dealing with paper documentation,” said Cropper. “Most organisations recognise this, with recent research showing that the vast majority intend to implement automated invoicing at some point in the future. But while businesses are striving to reduce costs and inefficiencies today, most of them are only considering implementing automated invoicing in several years’ time. Given that automated documentation systems can bring a genuine return on investment [ROI] in as little as six months, these organisations are delaying the opportunity to make significant savings and making themselves even more vulnerable at this critical time.”

Cropper pointed to a survey conducted by the International Accounts Payable Professional (IAPP) earlier this year, which found that almost half (44.5%) or respondents intend to introduce automated invoicing “within two or three years”, while a further 25% say it will take them longer. Only 11% of those polled were already processing all payments electronically.

“Paper might be comfortable and familiar, but a medium-sized enterprise might handle more than a million documents a year,” continued Cropper. “Without systems such as data capture and workflow processes, which translates as thousands of hours a year spent by accounts staff on repetitive tasks that could instead be applied to more productive work.”


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