Industry News

Why Your Contracting Company Needs an Automated AP Process

Kristen Frisa

Your accounts payable (AP) department does more than just pay the bills. A solid AP process keeps the lights on, and all systems going in your growing contracting company, and it does it by quickly and accurately processing large amounts of data in all kinds of formats. 

It’s a big ask for a small group of humans, many of whom have other job responsibilities. AP automation enables faster, cheaper, and more accurate action on your payables to keep your company’s money flowing smoothly.

  • AP automation is the process of first digitizing paper invoices and then putting all invoices into a standard format so that they can move through a standard workflow process until they’re eventually paid and recorded in an accounting system. 

Automation provides distinct advantages over manual AP processing, including improved accuracy, systematized number handling, and quicker results. Here we’ll discuss some of the top benefits of automating your company’s AP process.

Keep track of your numbers

It is essential for any business to keep meticulous records of money coming in and going out. First, your ability to function as a business requires a solid handle on the money that you owe and that others owe you. Specific and accurate numbers educate good decisions so that your company can stay financially viable.

Next, solid financial records are essential for maintaining compliance and preparing for audits. A clear trail of activity on each invoice can make the difference between a successful audit and one that causes untold misery for a business owner and AP staff. 

Automated AP systems provide a consistently reliable record of every action taken on an invoice, so compliance and monitoring are built into everyday activities. 

Further, standardized and detailed records allow for improved analysis of business operations so that business owners can see where deficits lie and make changes to training, technology, or setup that can improve the quality of work and the bottom line. 

Keep vendor relationships strong

Supply management is an ongoing challenge for the construction industry – not only are prices fluctuating but wait times for supplies can delay projects, creating even more costs. 

In this climate, contractors must stay vigilant in maintaining supplier relationships. A good relationship with a supplier can lead to helpful idea-sharing and problem-solving, saving you time and money on your materials orders. 

How do you keep suppliers happy? Paying your bills quickly goes a long way in that effort. AP automation reduces errors and speeds up the payment process to settle your bills earlier, which can grease the wheels with your important materials suppliers. Some suppliers even offer early payment discounts that can further increase the cost-benefit of automation.

Reduce your AP workload

AP automation saves your company time and money by reducing the manual labor that goes into paying each of your invoices by quite a large margin. A typical manual process involves a process that goes something like this:

  1. A purchase order is created
  2. Goods are received
  3. Invoices come in from different companies and in all different formats, paper or digital
  4. AP staff type in the data from each invoice into a common accounting system
  5. Purchase orders, invoices, and receipts are compared for accuracy
  6. Each invoice is approved for payment
  7. Payment is made
  8. Records of the transaction are stored, ready for an audit

Research suggests that it costs some companies as much as $10 to process each invoice that comes through their business. 

Compare that to the companies with top-performing processes that cost just over $2 per invoice, and it becomes obvious how quickly improvements to the AP system could save significant amounts of money

MazumaGo streamlines the payment process. Using the AP automation tool, you can get payment approval for your bills from project managers with just a few clicks - forget printing tracking down a signature on paper. After they’re approved, payments are made on invoices automatically, and marked as paid in your accounting system.

Automation reduces the human touch on each invoice, saving worker hours that could translate to lowered costs. 

Reduce AP errors and double payment

Minimizing the human touch in the AP process saves time and money and takes away the chances for typos. Paper invoices tend to get lost in the shuffle, manual entry often results in data mistakes, and people don’t always catch double entries of invoices into the system. 

Automating the process diminishes the number of errors, saving you time and trouble fixing them. 

MazumaGo’s AP automation tool allows you to import bills from your inbox. Categorize your invoices and assign them to projects, then the tool reads the pertinent information and syncs your bills with Quickbooks Online.

AP Automation is the future

The role of your accounts payable system within your business is hard to overstate. Without a clear view of what you owe and to whom, you’re making decisions in the dark and risking important business relationships. 

AP automation systematizes the AP process for consistent numbers no matter what your current project looks like. 

Tech innovations give companies the tools to reduce repetitive manual tasks, reduce data entry errors, and allow staff to spend their time more wisely. Are you ready to give your AP team the tools they need to reduce errors and get more done? Get started with MazumaGo today!