Accounting Automation & Beyond

DocuPhase’s blog provides valuable insight into how your company can benefit from implementing automation & document management into existing processes.

Still Chasing Invoices? Let AP Automation Strengthen Your Supplier Relationships

 
 

Despite recent improvements, the US supply chain continues to encounter significant hurdles in 2024. Heavy trucking dealerships aiming for success in the current market are developing strategies to curb rising costs and fulfill demands efficiently during labor and material shortages. 

The supply chain remains highly reactive to economic fluctuations, making predictions challenging. Businesses experiencing substantial revenue impacts due to supply chain issues can see a 62% drop in financial performance, making adaptation crucial for business stability. Addressing ongoing challenges while establishing strategies to maintain agility in the face of uncertainty is essential. 

Establishing strong supplier relationships is key to resilience. When supply chain issues threaten your bottom line and your ability to serve customers, maintaining positive relationships with suppliers can be a lifeline.  

Here are three major ways AP automation software can strengthen supplier relationships, enabling your heavy trucking dealership to stay agile and competitive despite supply chain challenges.  

1. Timely and Precise Payments 

One of the most effective ways to win over your suppliers is by ensuring timely and accurate invoice payments. Picture running a relay race where your team keeps dropping the baton at each handoff. It's frustrating, right? The same thing happens with manual payments – missed deadlines and errors create bottlenecks. Automation helps achieve consistency and accuracy.  

By implementing a system that validates incoming invoices and processes payments directly to suppliers with minimal manual intervention, you can eliminate those frustrating delays and ensure the baton never drops. 

Top-tier solutions can help you achieve up to 80% straight-through processing, meaning your AP team only handles invoices that require exceptions. Improving your touchless processing rate ensures invoices move seamlessly from capture to payment, ensuring precision and timeliness. 

Additionally, AP automation solutions provide opportunities to capitalize on early payment discounts and dynamic discounting programs. Leading AP software identifies eligible suppliers and automatically calculates discount amounts tied to payment remittance dates. This streamlined process accelerates supplier payments, empowering your AP department to optimize savings for your business. It’s a win-win! 

2. Improved Visibility 

Another effective strategy for managing supplier relationships is improving transparency in invoice payment statuses.  

Did you know that only 6% of companies report full visibility on their supply chains?  

This lack of visibility leaves suppliers feeling like they're constantly waiting for an important package without a tracking number.  Top AP automation providers offer a supplier portal providing detailed insights into payment activities. This allows users to track the entire process, from invoice submission to payment. 

Real-time status updates help build supplier trust by allowing them to monitor payment progress. This self-service option also reduces the need for suppliers to contact your accounting team for updates, providing convenience and freeing up your AP department's time. 

3. Enhanced Communication 

Enhancing communication between your AP team and suppliers further improves transparency.  

Remember playing a game of telephone? Messages get distorted as they pass from person to person. Invoice disputes handled via email threads often lead to similar miscommunications, while phone calls lack a documented record of discussions. This delays issue resolution and frustrates suppliers, potentially affecting their support during critical times. 

An online supplier portal that enables virtual communication and collaboration can alleviate many delays associated with back-and-forth exchanges. Imagine a chat platform like the ones we use daily, but specifically for invoice issues. By allowing suppliers and AP teams to leave comments directly on invoices and engage in real-time chats to resolve disputes, issues can be addressed swiftly and efficiently, leading to productive resolutions.  

Additionally, the system retains annotations, enabling teams to revisit prior communications and comments. This can help clarify misunderstandings, such as when a vendor forgets to inform an accountant about closing or crediting an invoice. A supplier portal with these features streamlines communications and ensures smoother collaboration and better outcomes. 

AP Automation's Lasting Impact on Supplier Relationships 

AP automation software provides heavy trucking dealerships with a robust solution for addressing and preparing for supply chain disruptions by nurturing stronger relationships with suppliers.  

Ensuring timely and precise payments, offering improved visibility, and facilitating enhanced communication help businesses improve collaboration with suppliers and build relationships based on transparency and trust.  

As a result, both parties can navigate uncertainties, safeguard profits, and deliver exceptional customer service. Embracing AP automation is just about process optimization; it’s a strategic investment in long-term success. 

Is your dealership ready to turn supplier relationships into partnerships? Experience the DocuPhase difference: schedule a demo today for accelerated growth and unmatched success! 

DocuPhase

A leader in Enterprise Automation software, DocuPhase delivers document management, workflow automation, and capture tools designed to help your enterprise stay organized and meet evolving technology and business needs.