In March of 2020, Covid-19 forced many organizations based in Europe and North America to have AP work remotely. Most companies were not set-up to have the AP team work remotely and it forced them to manage through Covid-19.
Working from home is the new normal and this applies to helping AR work remotely. Most organizations have an ERP or financial systems that let them access a majority of the finance team’s information digitally. Many organizations are finding there are still many processes that are done in a manual way and in some cases, it is difficult to do them remotely. COVID-19 is forcing companies to accelerate their digital transformation.
Here are a few things to consider when you are planning to have your AR team work remotely.
Work with current system: Your current ERP of financial systems may have the capabilities or a module for AR. However, in some cases they may not have solution, the cost may be prohibitive, or their solution is not a fit for your organization. When looking at 3rd party solutions make sure they can connect easily with an API or that it can at least pass through a CSV file.
Sending invoices: If you are still sending paper invoices this can be a big issue. This involves the printing, mailing, maybe a trip to the office to access the printer, and then dealing with getting the invoices into the post. Think invoice digitization as the desired outcome.
Customers: Do not forget about your customers in the process. How does your changes make it easier for their AP teams to work remotely? If you are sending paper-based invoices then your customer will need to have someone collect the mail, handle the invoices, and have a trip to the office. This could also mean a delay in your invoice getting into their finance system.
Following up on payment: Sending a paper-based invoice means a larger delay in the time until the invoice is received by your customer. It becomes more challenging in the current work from home environment. Your customers AP team may be infrequently collecting the post. This could lead to another delay. If your client is late on their payment the Accounts Receivable team will often need to follow-up. It may be more difficult to reach a customer through the phone to follow-up with many employees working from home. A digital based invoicing solution can help with a notification that the invoice has been opened and, in some cases, even approved.
Receiving payment: Many customers will want to move away from writing cheques if they have not done so already. They want to be able to reduce their employee’s time in the office and handling paper. Moving clients to pay electronically can improve the speed at which your organization get paid, reducing your DSO. There are many ways for organizations to receive payment electronically
If you would like to understand how OnePosting can help AR work remotely, please book a meeting with one of our team members.