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Accounts Payable Management – A Value-add Service for your Portfolio

26th Apr 2024
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Offering AP management as a service adds value to your portfolio and positions you as an indispensable partner in your client's operational efficiency. However, for sustainable success, it is to do so in efficient manner without adding extra workload.  

Accounts Payable Management – A Value-add Service for your Portfolio
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Account payables management can be an additional stream of income and a foundation for building trust with clients for accountants offering value-added advisory services. Many firms avoid it due to potential manual nature of work and complexities in executing it.

However, with the right tools, firms can streamline the accounts payable (AP) process, reducing the paperwork and avoiding manual data entry while offering a competitive solution for clients that can help them maintain healthy cash flows and robust supplier relationships.  

Why does AP management matter? 

Payments are a key part of running an effective business. However, as clients grow and diversify, the volume of payments to manage can quickly add up, leaving clients unclear about their cash position or supplier debts. 

An efficient accounts payable management process enables the systematic tracking and handling of the business obligations to pay off short-term debts to its suppliers or creditors in a way that benefits the company. In practice, this involves various tasks, such as verifying invoices, executing payments, and managing supplier relationships. With the right advice from their advisors, your clients can ensure that all payments are made accurately and on time, avoiding any potential finance charges or damaged relations with suppliers.  

Firms, meanwhile, get a robust data foundation on which to build more nuanced, personalised services – all while automating much of the work involved in AP management.  

What are the key elements of effective Accounts Payables management? 

Payments are so ubiquitous that it can be easy to forget the difference that a properly managed service can deliver. Experienced advisors can provide the knowledge, tools and insights that clients lack when it comes to dealing with payments at scale. By analysing and improving each element of the AP process, firms can improve outcomes for clients and service levels alike.  

  • Invoice Processing Efficiency: Managing accounts payable starts with the ability to process invoices efficiently. That means timely data capture, invoice validation, reconciliation against purchase orders and receipt documentation. Speed and accuracy in these processes are key to avoiding disruptive payment delays and discrepancies. 
  • Optimised Payment Timing: By strategically scheduling payments, businesses can maximise their cash flow month on month. This might mean taking full advantage of credit terms or choosing early payment to maximise available discounts. 
  • Regular Audits and Compliance Checks: Regularly auditing the AP process helps identify inefficiencies or errors such as duplicate payments or fraudulent invoices. Ensuring compliance with internal controls and industry regulations helps to maintain transparency and accountability, as well as catching errors that could catch clients out later. 

Adding Value Through Accounts Payable Management 

Offering accounts payable management services allows accountants to deepen their engagement with clients.  

  • Accountants can provide strategic insights into cash flow management, help negotiate better terms with suppliers, and implement robust systems that reduce errors and improve financial control.  
  • By managing AP, accountants have a clearer view of their clients' outgoing cash flow, enabling more accurate financial forecasting and budgeting. 
  • Integrating basic services such as AP management within your client relationships enables closer working practices and improved retention. 

Why the right tools are essential for AP management? 

Firms avoid AP management for the same reasons clients do – tedious, detailed and time-consuming tasks. That’s why offering AP management at scale requires efficient processes for reducing repetitive work, human error and paperwork. 

Receipt Bot transforms accounts payable management from a manual and labour-intensive process into a streamlined, automated workflow.  

  • Our AI-enabled platform automates the data entry of bills and receipts,     which not only speeds up the process but also reduces the likelihood of human error.  
  • We also calculate payables in real time, providing businesses and their accounting partners with up-to-date information for financial decision-making. 
  • Receipt Bot's ability to extract data from PDFs, including supplier statements, significantly enhances the reconciliation process. This feature ensures that payments are backed by verified documentation, thereby maintaining accuracy in financial reporting and compliance. 

Enhancing client value with AP management 

With modern technology, incorporating accounts payable management into your service portfolio is a clear route to value. Not only does it enhance your value proposition in a competitive marketplace, but it also strengthens the financial backbone of your clients' businesses to safeguard their future.  

With Receipt Bot, accountants can significantly enhance the efficiency and accuracy of managing accounts payable to streamline their operations and deliver high-value, strategic financial services that make a real difference to your clients’ and your firm’s bottom line.  

To find out more, sign up for your free trial of our advanced payables automation platform