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The Benefits of AI-Powered Accounts Payable Automation

2 min read


Accounts Payable departments carry a lot of responsibility within your business to keep cash flow moving and the supply chain satisfied. However, many AP departments are still relying on manual antiquated business processes or patched-together attempts at automation.

Accounts payable automation, including automated invoice processing, can be a game-changer for your business. Add to that the introduction of artificial intelligence (AI) in accounts payable and the ability to streamline your accounting processes, data collection, and reporting is taken to a whole new level.

What’s driving AP automation?

Where and how we work today has changed, and this change is driving the need for AP automation.

  • New ways to work. The pandemic drove a need for remote work, and the workforce has maintained a desire for it. Where people do their work has upended the established processes for onboarding suppliers, processing invoices, and disbursing payments. Manual and paper-based processes don’t work in a remote or hybrid work environment.

  • New threats. Business Email Compromise (BEC) attacks and phishing schemes are on the rise. Manual invoice processing and payment approval done via email exposes your company to fraud risks.
  • New visibility. Corporate decision-makers are looking for real-time visibility into cash flow and financial performance. Spreadsheets that need to be tracked manually aren’t enough to keep up with today’s need for data in a fast-changing environment.

With these new pressures, businesses are recognizing that process changes are needed. According to the Institute of Finance and Management, 71% of AP departments have plans to automate in the next year.

There are many day-to-day issues in your accounts payable department that automation, and more specifically AI-driven automation, can assist with. Here are just a few common issues that may sound familiar.

  • Data isn’t being captured or validated
  • Data doesn’t flow seamlessly through systems
  • Invoices need to be checked manually multiple times
  • Invoices need to be manually routed for approval
  • Invoices have a long cycle time
  • Reporting and analytics aren’t available
  • Payments have errors

If your AP department is still largely working through their payment cycles manually, you could probably relate to a few of those issues. Businesses that have already implemented AP automation, are discovering many benefits.

Five key AP automation benefits:

  • Less chase. Leaving paper invoices on someone’s desk for approval doesn’t really work in today’s virtual work environment, and following up on emails is a pain. With automated routing, there is less chase, more visibility into workflow status, and less time needed for approval.
  • More resources. Manually processing invoices takes time which means your team isn’t available for larger projects. By automating the AP process, you free them up for more meaningful work that will make a more significant contribution to your organization.
  • Fewer errors. We’re all human, and humans make errors when they have to manually key in data. With an automated system, data between invoices and purchase orders is matched up automatically.
  • Better decision-making. With automated data capture, you have improved visibility, improved reporting, and better decision-making for your organization.
  • Fraud protection. An automated accounts payable system includes access protections and workflows for signoffs, adding a layer of security to your payment processing.

EO Johnson’s solution powered by AI in accounts payable

Our team of digital transformation experts can put together an AI-driven automation system for your accounts payable department. In addition to automating and streamlining your department’s processes, our AI-assisted data capture quickly and accurately lifts information from any source, allowing you to:

  • Digitize documents from any source, including emails, scanned images, office documents, and handwritten forms.
  • Automate extraction and eliminate the re-typing of information by making your data capture process part of a larger workflow that shares it with your other financial applications.
  • Reduce errors by effortlessly extracting typically challenging data points like headers, footers, and line-item data.

Contact us today to get started on your digital transformation or for a demonstration of what AI can do for your accounts payable department.



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