Another outcome is an increase in efficiency; the AP department can instantly find an invoice without having to waste time chasing the business users. With approximately 70% of the invoices now matching the PO immediately, a considerable amount of invoices only require scanning, after which the process is entirely automated. This efficiency has directly resulted in a reduction in the number of people required in the Accounts Payable department; before the system was installed the team consisted of 13 people and there have been reductions in headcount, as the AP manager substantiates: "The IMS system has increased efficiency in our Accounts Payable department to such an extent that on full implementation we expect to reduce our headcount by 4."
The decision was made to automate the invoice processing; to streamline the department and ultimately to be benchmarked as an exemplary AP process. The search began to find a solution that could meet their needs: integrate tightly with their ERP solution, be sufficiently flexible to mirror their processes and be easy for the AP team to use. "We chose to go with our final supplier because we felt they took the time to really investigate our process, work with us to design the most efficient system and were able to prove the seamless integration with our ERP system and had a very effective workflow solution."