Grant Associates, renowned for its award-winning landscape architecture practice across the globe, has redesigned its invoice processing removing the need to print invoices.
Using Invu Verify, a cloud-based automated accounts payable system from Invu, Grant Associates has significantly reduced their reliance on paper and employee efficiency.
Aside from cost savings and better employee productivity, Grant Associates has also seen a reduction in the use of paper and printers, improving their sustainable practices, which is at the forefront of what they do in all aspects of their work.
Before implementing Invu Verify, Grant Associates had to print out every invoice (the majority of which were also received digitally), type the data into their previous software, manually write the transaction number on the paper copy and further store it in a filing cabinet. This process was not sustainable, an unnecessary use of paper and time-consuming.
To improve this environmentally unfriendly and outdated method of invoice processing, Grant Associates needed to find a solution that streamlined their invoice processing and supported their goals of reducing paper use.
Ed Lucking, Finance Manager at Grant Associates, explained, “It was annoying to save PDFs on file servers. It was partly laziness; it was almost easier to print out invoices and keep the hard copies than it was to find your own cumbersome way to store them.”
Targeted at users of Sage 50 and 200, Invu Verify shifts the work away from mundane tasks like data entry and printing invoices, towards value-added activities like dealing with exceptions, exercising controls over expenditure and maintenance of supplier relationships.
Lucking continues, “I wouldn’t be able to do all my current responsibilities if I didn’t have Invu Verify. This just highlights how little time the process takes now. I am still able to do the process myself and it really takes no time out of my workday to use.”
Grant Associates aren’t alone in their manual and slow invoice approval process. This has proven to be the case for many businesses, which a recently commissioned independent research project highlighted the majority (85%) of businesses still print out their invoices even if they have been received digitally.
Ian Smith, GM and Finance Director at Invu, said: “The environmental impact that businesses have is a serious issue. Corporate social responsibility is creeping up the list of priorities in both large and small businesses as they realise the benefits of going paperless. However, as our research shows, most businesses still seem to print invoices that have been sent via email – that’s a lot of unnecessary time, effort and trees being wasted!”
Finance departments across the UK are ready to embrace automated accounting processes. Research has shown that 44% of finance workers think that automating processes would make them more productive, with one in five (22%) claiming they would welcome automation in their business.
Smith concludes, “Finance teams that are still working with paper-heavy processes need to challenge their business leaders to make changes, and investing in automated invoice processing could be the first step to becoming more environmentally friendly.”