The paperless revolution has affected businesses of all industries, across all departments. More and more, inefficient paper-based processes are being replaced with electronic document management systems to speed up workflow, increase data security, reduce waste, and positively impact a company’s bottom line.
No department is better equipped to understand that bottom line impact than the accounting department. AP and AR are two critically important departments that have the most to gain with the implementation of an electronic filing system. Introducing workflow software impacts the invoicing process, record keeping and accessibility of documents, while greatly reducing office supply expenses.
Without a doubt, going paperless saves money on paper. That, however, is the barest tip of the iceberg. Other supplies include ink, toner, folders and filing boxes or cabinets. There is also less time and fewer resources lost when multi-functioning machines inevitably break down. Overall energy expenditure is reduced, as is a company’s environmental impact, and document storage needs can be completely eliminated.
This in return reduces facility costs, but it also helps streamline the entire record keeping process. Accessing and sharing files is radically faster with paperless office software, which is far less susceptible to loss and damage than hardware. It is especially so for the accounting department, where those small losses can translate into big money. Digital document management solutions are a more secure option, as heavily encrypted databases are far more difficult to access than single-lock filing cabinets.
The invoicing process is another area where digital filing systems can pay concrete dividends. The aging cycle becomes sped up and regulated as initial invoices (as well as 15, 30, and 60 day reminders) are all brought up automatically. The need for extra accounts receivable staff to work on filing, searching, and distributing documents is reduced or eliminated. For accounts payable, deadline reminders, vendor discounts, and streamlined payment procedures are all part of benefits of utilizing an innovative document management software.
It is important that every individual company find the right document control system for their own unique needs, but, regardless of the particular product that a company chooses to employ, the reality is that business in the 21st century move at the speed of electronic information. In order to interface with other contemporary organizations, keep up with the speed of the modern office, and project an image to clients of a progressive, forward-thinking company, it is imperative that a business, and especially its accounting department, utilizes industry-standard technology - or it will risk falling behind the competition. The paper-based office is a thing of the past, and today’s workplace happens digitally; those companies that thrive will be the ones best equipped for that reality.