Improve your invoicing process
Many small and medium businesses tend to focus on efficient improvements in parts the operations that are linked directly to their products/services. While doing so, one can easily oversee small steps that could be improved in supporting functions such as their invoicing process.
Though invoicing is a necessary part to conduct business, it can require a lot of time that could be spent more wisely. To improve the process of receiving and sending invoices, doing it electronically require small changes that could have a large impact on the efficiency. Below we discuss three concrete steps that you as a business owner can take in order to save time.
Accept electronic invoices from your suppliers and push for them among your customers
The first step to take is to promote electronic invoices among your suppliers and customers. Many businesses these days have the possibility to send their invoices in PDF-format instead of a paper-format. Sending and receiving paper invoices is often a routine rather than a requirement. Using invoices in PDF-format saves time (printing, filing, posting, etc.) and paper.
Use automated invoice-scanning software for paper invoices
For those suppliers that do not agree to send electronic invoices, one can use invoice-scanning software. A first benefit of scanning is that the invoices can be organized better (read more on this below). A second benefit is that invoice-scanning software convert images into computer-readable text. This allows you to search within a document for certain words if necessary. Moreover, once the image is converted into text, some software can automatically read the data from the invoice and enter it to your system.
Improve your invoicing workflow by standardizing and simplifying
With electronic invoices come many benefits on how you can organize your invoicing workflow. By standardizing basic functions like invoice receipt and approval, you can make large efficiency improvements. Your organization will clearly benefit from this as time can be spent elsewhere. Furthermore, your suppliers/customers will also be happy with a more efficient process on your side, as it will increase the timely payments.