Every organization has a set of structured and unstructured data stacked up somewhere or the other. Out of the unstructured documents, vendor invoices form a non-trivial part. With the advent of digitalization, paper-based invoices are now replaced by digital counterparts. But, the number of PDF invoices piling up on the AP (accounts payable) department’s systems have been intact. As a result, the AP team is now dealing with the tedious task of capturing those invoices. They need to convert invoice to Excel to be able to process it and make payments.
Earlier, there was no data entry PDF to Excel required as paper-based invoices could be manually entered into Excel. But, with the advent of digital invoices, organizations tried to reduce human intervention by eliminating manual exchange of vendor invoices. Consequently, the AP team soon had a new obstacle.
Now, even if the invoices were digital, data entry into Excel sheets was still a mandatory and unfortunately a manual task. The organizations came back to where they started with finding a solution to a problem. Now, they wanted to automate PDF to Excel data entry. Manual data entry was indeed a cumbersome process and was eating up a lot of time of the AP team.
But why was the conversion even required?
Why PDF Invoices Need to be Converted into Excel?
PDF invoices are unstructured and non-standard data formats. You cannot process a data set until it is organized into a structured and standardized form. Vendor invoices can have multiple formats since every vendor has a unique format. It is practically impossible to process one invoice at a time and send it for approval and then repeat the process for thousands/ millions of them every month.
The process doesn’t end here. Vendor invoices need approval from the stakeholders before they are sent for payment. But how do you know the invoice is valid and not duplicate? Remembering each one of them through details is again a hard nut to crack. Hence, organizations started looking for solutions to questions like “how to make invoice in Excel PDF” and “how to save invoice data in Excel” to store and organize all their invoices in one place.
Earlier, manual data entry was the only option for the AP team to convert invoice PDFs into Excel. But as it is clearly visible that manual data entry is definitely not cost-effective and productive way to convert invoice to Excel, the companies switched to OCR (Optical Character Recognition) solutions.
Was OCR a cost-effective solution for the conversion?
With advancements in technology, OCR upgraded to template-based OCR and then wholly transformed into AI-enabled and template-less OCR. So, which one of the three technologies is the cheapest yet effective solution to convert invoice to Excel?
- Manual data extraction is time-consuming, expensive ($12 per invoice), and prone to business losses.
- OCR solutions could automate only 20% of the process as the extracted data has to be manually tweaked by the AP team after PDF to Excel data entry.
- Template-based OCR solutions helped companies to save 20% of the costs but could automate the AP processes by only up to 40%. Since it could not understand the context of data, it even made mistakes in processing invoices.
AI-enable OCR Data Extraction
Finally, the OCR feature extraction algorithm became the savior. AI-enabled intelligent document processing integrated with OCR to make it a template-less, end-to-end automated document decision support system. The AI-enabled OCR could interpret the data irrespective of the document or invoice layout and understand the context before extracting it into the Excel sheets or JSON format.
OCR feature extraction algorithm maximizes the recognition rate with the least number of elements, making it easy for the data extraction software to capture the context of data. As a result, duplicate and invalid invoices automatically reduced from the records, and approvals became much easier and quicker than before.
AI-enable OCR could save up to 90% of costs by featuring 95% end-to-end automation for the AP team. Moreover, businesses can now scale themselves exponentially with time, money, and resources in place.
It is, therefore, clear from the above comparison that an AI-based OCR solution is the only cost-effective way to convert invoice to Excel.
How to avail the affordable option - The KlearStack Advantage
KlearStack blends the power of template-less, end-to-end automated, and document decision support enabled AI with OCR that makes the data extraction software intelligent enough to interpret the invoice data before extraction. Using machine learning models and natural language processing techniques, KlearStack gives you 90-95% accuracy with data extraction within 90 days of implementing the software.
How did our client benefit from KlearStack?
One of our clients was facing problems while manually processing consumer durable loans. More than 200,000 loans used to be processed every month, and it took 45 minutes to process one loan. Errors, rework, high operations cost, and linear business scalability coupled with a high turnaround time degraded the processing model.
Hence, when we implemented KlearStack as a loan processing automation software, things changed for the client within 90 days. The results looked something like this:
- 70% effort savings
- 100% improvement in CX and Dealer experience
- 200% faster turnaround for each loan
- 15,000 hours saved per month
How did this change happen? Their processing model transitioned from manual to automated. Take a look.
- Sales representative uploaded pictures of the documents using mobile app
- Document images uploaded to KlearStack secure cloud using KlearStack API
- KlearStack processed the images using AI-enabled IDP, interpreted each document and extracted data for specific fields
- KlearStack pushed the interpreted data to the client’s downstream SFDC app
- SFDC app reconciled the data
- Loan pushed for approval.
Intelligent document processing and automation replaced all the cumbersome and time-consuming tasks involved in loan processing, thereby allowing the client to capitalize on a productive business model. This was possible with KlearStack’s AI-enabled data extraction software that could actually integrate with the company’s environment and requirements to automate data entry PDF to Excel.
If you, too, have similar requirements, book a quick consultation call to discuss your business use case with us and learn more about how KlearStack can help you lower down your invoice processing costs