Whether it’s accounts payable (AP) or accounts receivables (AR) in manufacturing companies, invoice processing has historically presented several challenges that automation can solve. According to a recent survey of company leaders responsible for financial processes, the top benefits of automation focus on reduced errors, costs, and employee resources.
However, even with those and other benefits, only 74% of the companies surveyed had yet to adopt AP automation. And when it comes to manufacturing companies, interest in document automation is low, with only 24% saying they’ve implemented payments automation, with only 18% considering doing so in the future.
Document scanning can alleviate—and even eliminate—many issues
Manual processing of invoices is a major culprit when it comes to efficiency around errors, costs, and employees’ time for manufacturing companies. However, for those that have yet to consider or implement automation, the use of a document scanner in invoice processing is a perfect place to start, especially with the promise of benefits such as:
- Faster AR and AP cycles with streamlined accounting processes
- Improved, more efficient productivity, workflows and collaboration
- Better data quality, with less errors
- Reduced processing, resource and operational costs
- Greater savings on discounts and fewer penalties
- Reduced paper waste
It’s time to automate—and free up time and resources
Depending on the company, there may be hundreds and hundreds of documents connected to AP and AR invoice processing in a manufacturing environment. Traditionally, these documents may be passed from employee to employee for appropriate actions, whether it’s for checking in deliveries, shipping out products, billing customers, paying vendors, or financial approvals.
The excessively large volumes of paper and the multiple opportunities for human error in manual processing all add up to unnecessary costs, wasted time, and inefficient workflows.
With fi Series document scanners and PaperStream Capture software, AR and AP staff can immediately scan invoices directly into their accounting, ERP, inventory, supply chain, and other related systems. fi Series scanners offer reliable, high-quality image capture and OCR capabilities that can launch a paperless workflow that immediately begins to increase productivity and efficiency.
People can set up supplier templates, and with intelligent document recognition, they can match invoices to existing information in other systems, such as purchase orders or other vendor-related documentation. Human errors become a thing of the past, processing time is dramatically reduced, and employees are freed up to focus on more value-add activities.
In addition, because all the scanned data is now searchable through OCR capabilities, companies can save significant amounts through dynamic discounting. For instance, AP staff can quickly determine when to pay suppliers by searching for due dates and they can take advantage of what could be significant discounts based on early payment dates for large inventories of goods.
Choose a scanner to meet your specific needs
For many manufacturing companies, the fi-800R is a perfect choice for invoice processing. It’s a compact, yet highly efficient scanner that has a small footprint which is ideal for convenient use on the desktops of AP and AR staff. The fi-800R can scan up to 40ppm and up to 4,500 sheets a day.
The fi-7160 is a faster, higher volume scanner that is powerful despite its compact size. With speed, reliability and accuracy, it can scan 60 ppm, with up to 9,000 sheets a day. This scanner comes with the PaperStream IP and PaperStream Capture for advanced imaging process functions. The fi-7300NX has similar capabilities, but comes in a cloud-based network version that can be placed anywhere in a department and shared. With Wi-Fi and Ethernet connectivity, AP and AR staff can be more productive and reduce interruptions.
For other areas in manufacturing companies—such as engineering and design—the fi-7700 is a highly versatile scanner, as it includes both an ADF feeder that can scan extremely fast and also a large flatbed for larger or difficult documents. With user-friendly design and focus on quality, this scanner is suitable for papers of different material, such as tissue paper, plastic cards, books, magazines, envelopes, and long page documents. It also comes with PaperStream IP, which lets you automatically convert documents or materials into exceptionally clear image data.