Industry leaders often face challenges in spotting money leaks from their organization due to overpayments, erroneous payments, duplicate payments, or outright frauds. The finance teams form an integral part of an organization, and being overloaded with monotonous tasks, it fails to concentrate on its core competencies and ends up making mistakes.
If you have scanned our previous blog on shared services-outsourcing comparison, you must have observed how shared services work and their role in streamlining AP processes.
A shared services accounting model helps organizations improve their AP processes while improving the return on investment (ROI). Being a central unit of operation for all business units, it offers control, standardization, productivity, agility, scalability, and better customer services to its users. The meaning of shared services says it all – an internal organization function that delivers shared processes to all the business units in one place.
From back-office administration to accounting, finance, human resources, customer service, and other business operations, shared service functions can streamline your organization’s overall performance. By eliminating redundancies in AP processes and implementing the latest best practices, shared services accounting reduce human dependency. Here’s how shared services elevate your AP team’s success.
1. Provides reliable services at competitive prices
Shared services accounting streamline AP operations while cutting down on hefty processing costs and providing services that you can trust. When you set up an internal shared service unit in your organization, it may take some initial investment for implementing the model. As soon as the model starts learning in fixed time frames, you can see a significant return on investment as compared to outsourced accounting.
2. Increases AP team’s productivity and focus
Finance shared services generally have focus on efficiency and hence offload repetitive, high-volume processes in the AP department. These services can automate invoice data capture, data entry into business systems, and even data validation so the staff can concentrate on their core competencies instead of indulging themselves in mundane tasks. Further, shared services can free up resources that the AP team would otherwise use in scanning documents, extracting data, validating invoices, and making payments.
3. Offers complete control over AP processes
Even if you set up an offshore shared services center, your organization has complete control over all the processes delivered to the business units. Shared service centers (SSC), being an internal part of the organization, offer increased control over performance and reports to the AP team as compared to outsourced accounting services. Moreover, the SSC model fits perfectly in an organization where alignment of AP processes with business objectives is paramount as the internal team can understand business requirements better.
4. Ensures real-time data analytics and reporting
If you have taken a deeper look at shared services functions, you might have noticed the real-time nature of the model. Since it does not require human intervention in processing invoices or even validation, the model provides real-time reports and analytics related to invoices or other processes. This helps the AP team to leverage their core competencies and gain deeper insights into the reports so they can contribute to the company’s overall performance. Shared services operate in real-time so the organizations can save significant time in processing supplier payments and maintain a healthy and long-term relationship.
5. Improves data quality and resource utilization
Shared services accounting, when combined with RPA (robotic process automation) and AI-enabled adaptive document recognition technology, ensure data integrity, accuracy, and quality during the data extraction and validation process. Since AI learns with every validation process, it gets more precise with time, thereby replacing human operators to check the extracted invoice data. Further, RPA captures data from invoices, the resources can be utilized for other crucial operations and the budget assigned to this task is allotted to imperative expenses.
AI-enabled shared services accounting provide more than data quality…
AI-enabled shared services are about cognitive or adaptive document recognition technology which can understand the context of data and interpret it automatically. Such a technique eliminates human dependency to copy, paste, and check invoice data, thereby preventing inefficiencies in the entire AP system.
Moreover, when cumbersome tasks like invoice processing and supplier payments are automated with SSCs, the AP team can employ their core competencies to analyze reports in real-time. Not only AP, with cognitive shared services, but every department in your organization can also quit monotonous tasks and focus on their specific skill sets to improve the overall performance.
Employ Scalable, Cognitive Shared Service Centers with KlearStack
KlearStack is an AI-enabled data extraction software that uses adaptive document recognition technology to capture data from invoices and enter it into the business systems while validating it on the go. When employed with your SSC, KlearStack utilizes template-less document scanning, interpretation and intelligent document decision support technique to extract and validate invoice data on its own.
There’s no human intervention required in invoice processing or supplier payments. All your AP team needs to do is employ their primary skillset in analyzing your business performance. With “KlearStack-enabled” shared services accounting, you can ensure end-to-end automated invoice processing, timely supplier payments, healthy vendor-customer relationships, and streamlined finance accounting.
To know more about how KlearStack improves your AP team’s performance, book a free consultation call with our experts today.