How much are manual order-to-cash (O2C) processes costing your company? Invoicing is the lifeblood of profitable organizations—if you don’t invoice your customers, you’ll never get paid. But despite its undoubted importance, too many companies still rely on manual, inconsistent invoicing processes.
This approach is inefficient, time-consuming, expensive, and fraught with error. Further, it’s unscalable—companies can only increase their order-to-cash processing capabilities by increasing their accounts receivables (AR) team.
Fortunately, there’s an easy way to make your invoicing quicker, cost-effective, and accurate: automation. Let’s look at how software automation can help you reduce human error, improve your order to cash processes, and enhances your billing and invoicing system scalability.
Reduce human error in Order to Cash (O2C) processes
Did you know:
- An estimated 61% of late payments are due to invoicing errors.
- Late payments are one of the main reasons why businesses go under.
By reducing human error, automation helps you to get paid on time more often.
So, how exactly does it work?
Automate your invoice generation
Use smart billing automation software to create correct invoices for a range of billing models, across all industries, and in any language. It can automate complex billing scenarios, apply country-specific tax rules, and offer smart templating engines to create fully customized invoices in seconds.
Thus, you can also combine multiple items and contracts in a single invoice, making life easier for your customers, as well as processing and invoicing multi-brand scenarios under one roof.
Automate your invoice to payment matching
Are you spending too much time matching incoming payments to the invoices you send out manually? This is immensely time-consuming and resource intensive. It is also why companies often rely on outsourced invoicing teams that number in the hundreds and sometimes thousands.
Only, there’s a better approach.
You can automatically match incoming payments to invoices by leveraging automated payment management solutions. Spare the time and hassle of manually digging through your invoices and payments to work out what’s what.
Improving your order-to-cash processes
Short story: Automate. Automate all the things. Automation is quicker and more adept than people regarding data-heavy tasks, especially when it comes to creating and sending invoices. Let’s look at how an automated order-to-cash platform will bring to your business.
Increase your invoicing speed
As we all know: Cash(flow) is king. The quicker you send out invoices, the sooner you get paid—so invoicing speed is a core component of having a strong cash flow. By auto-generating your invoices and leveraging pre-made templates, you can create, edit, and send invoices far quicker than using manual processes alone. If you are using photoshop or illustrator to create invoices, this feature was made just for you.
Measure your invoicing processing
Automated invoicing solutions allow you to precisely measure every aspect of your invoicing operations. You can monitor how many invoices you’ve sent per month, whether these have been sent on time and to the right person, if they’re correct (e.g., contain the right VAT information), and whether they’ve been paid on time.
These insights reveal whether any aspect of your invoicing operations is currently subpar. If it is, you can take quick remedial action. As the adage goes, ‘what gets measured gets managed’.
Ensure your compliance
If you are a global organization, you face an uphill battle when it comes to invoicing compliance. Every market you serve has its own tax regime, meaning regulations differ greatly from country to country, invoice to invoice. These regulations are constantly evolving—as are your customers’ requirements, business models, and payment methods.
Therefore, you must keep a close eye over your invoicing processes: who’s completing them, whether they have a validation process, and how they are authenticated. They need to be agile and flexible, ready to adapt your O2C processes when necessary.
Leading billing automation solutions allow you to define accounting and tax rules for countries, and markets, and adapt to changes in the blink of an eye—meaning they can seamlessly create fully-compliant invoices for you. Check out our electric charging success story as a reference. Just as importantly, they work closely with you, consulting you on monetization and billing best practices.
Enhance your scalability with order to cash automation
It’s not just startups that need to automate their financial processes if they want to scale finances successfully. Companies from small SMEs all the way up to global enterprises may be forced to hire an increasing number of AR staff to handle their ever-expanding invoicing requirements as they grow if they don’t look to digitization.
Increasing your headcount may enable you to catch up on your invoicing backlog. However, the results can often be as inefficient and error-prone as before if you stick to using manual processes to complete low-value tasks. This negatively can impact morale while hindering productivity.
Rather than increasing your headcount, it’s much more effective to improve your scalability and individual contributor productivity by using smart invoicing systems to unlock greater revenue from the same quantity of resources. It is best to buy a billing system.
These billing systems streamline your O2C process, improve the quality of your work and generate positive outcomes for your business. As an added bonus, this boosts morale and employee satisfaction—a win-win for your company and your team.
Reduce your FinOps team’s workload and save money
Automation liberates you by taking tedious financial operations tasks off your plate. By automating order-to-cash processes, you can spend more time and energy focusing on high-value and interesting activities that tangibly move the needle. For example, case management or financial planning. Not only will this increase your productivity, but it’ll also boost your employee engagement.
There’s no point in hiring more staff than necessary. If anything, if you’re a startup reading this in 2023, you may have actually downsized. With automation handling routine invoicing processes, you can keep your finance team as lean as possible and reduce unnecessary wage costs.
The billing automation imperative
Turn invoicing from a time-consuming drain on resources and sanity to a swift and seamless process. The right order-to-cash platform will help you to set up your billing automation processes within just a few weeks, helping you and your company to thrive. With time freed up from worrying about invoicing admin and month’s closing, you and your team can focus on your core business tasks like case management, financial planning, or creating new, great products in new markets. Work that helps add increasing value to the services you offer.
Now is the time to free yourself from manual order to cash processes. Schedule a custom monetization and billing demo with a Nitrobox expert today to ensure you’re following the right approach and get answers to any burning questions you might have.