Employ Artificial Intelligence, Vendor Requisitions, and Configurable Workflows for Agile Procure to Pay Business Processes
Managing vendor relationships, vendor bids, contracts, supplier quality issues, returns, and accounts payable processes are tedious without the right business software. Even small manufacturers and distributors rely on hundreds of vendors for materials and outsourced services needed to provide quality products and services. There are many disconnected systems and activities in procure-to-pay processes, but none are as crucial as the financial management of vendor bills and payments. Despite technological advances, most AP invoices are still received on paper with manual processes for approvals and payment via paper checks. Efficient procure-to-pay processes rely on connectivity, collaboration, and automation. Modern ERP applications provide a foundation for managing items, suppliers, subcontractors, and inventory replenishment. Material requirements planning and connected requisition systems automate the purchasing process. Barcoding and warehouse management streamline the receipt and put-away process. Efficient processes reduce data entry errors and provide real-time visibility into data to cut costs, streamline supply chains, and improve profitability.
This Playbook illustrates how Acumatica’s business intelligence, machine learning, and configurable workflows streamline the entire procure-to-pay process for manufacturers and distributors. Take control with a future-proof ERP application built for tomorrow’s supply chains. Harness automation to do more with less staff. Improve data accuracy with data validation and notifications. The procure-to-pay process encompasses four phases and 12 unique steps, from item definition and supplier management to financial reporting and business analysis.
Introduction to Procure-to-Pay
Acumatica provides configurable workflow and automation to streamline the entire procure-to-pay process. Modify the process to fit your unique business requirements and harness the power of artificial intelligence and machine learning to automate vendor bill reconciliation. Major components of the procure-to-pay process include requests and requisitions, vendor bidding, inventory replenishment, material planning, purchase orders, inventory and warehouse management, accounts payable, general ledger, and business intelligence and reporting.
Phase 1: Preparation
The procure-to-pay process begins before the first purchase order is created. Companies define inventory items for stock and non-inventoried items. Setup vendors and implement systems to manage supplier relationships. Configure inventory replenishment and material requirements planning to automate the purchasing process.
Phase 2: Procurement
Purchase requisitions are essential for sourcing new items from existing or prospective suppliers. Acumatica’s embedded Requisition Management application provides automation for vendor bidding and conversion of requisitions to vendor and item records in the application. Purchase orders are also created with native inventory replenishment, material requirements planning (MRP), and manual purchase order creation activities. Acumatica supports blanket purchase orders and drop shipments from vendors directly to customers. Configure receipt of goods and put-away workflows to complete the procurement process.
Phase 3: Payment
Vendor payment is fraught with manual processes. Despite advances in technology, most companies still process payments manually from paper invoices received in the mail or electronic bills in their email. Accounting professionals spend countless hours entering data, matching invoices to purchase orders, and processing payments. Manual processes are prone to data entry errors and delay payments resulting in late penalties that strain vendor relationships. Modern ERP applications like Acumatica provide artificial intelligence and machine learning to automate payment processing enabling small companies to scale without adding staff.
Phase 4: Process Improvement
Every financial transaction is posted to the General Ledger for financial analysis and reporting. Generic inquiries, dashboards, and business intelligence applications enable users to create key performance indicators with drill-downs to view source transactions. Identify overdue payments before they become a problem and analyze vendor performance. Reporting and analysis tools enable management to adjust workflows to streamline the procure-to-pay process. Extend the process with related applications to manage documents, asset procurement, professional service purchases, and more for a holistic view of your business.
Streamline the procure-to-pay process with a modern, flexible, and secure ERP application. Acumatica includes all the tools manufacturers and distributors need to connect, configure, and automate business processes in a single application framework.
Read this playbook to discover how to:
- Automate the 4 phases and 12 unique steps of procure-to-pay.
- Harness automation to do more with less staff.
- Improve data accuracy with data validation and notifications.
- Identify overdue payments before they become a problem and analyze vendor performance.
- Use Acumatica Cloud ERP for procure-to-pay automation.