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From back-office task to front-and-center profit driver

Why restaurants should automate accounts payable
Photograph: Shutterstock

Whether it’s the front of the house or back of the house, all elements need to be in sync for a restaurant to run smoothly and successfully. 

Tasks that have traditionally been considered back-office in nature, like accounts payable (AP), impact the entire organization, from each bill received and paid to the overall bottom line, and can actually be a point of difference in profitability. By automating invoice processing, a restaurant can refocus its resources and staff on other strategic, money-generating efforts while also streamlining its own efficiencies.

Market research underscores the effectiveness of digitizing the AP function. Highly automated AP departments capture nearly 50% more early payment discounts compared to operations with no automation, according to a report on AP performance from the Institute of Finance and Management.

Meanwhile, a recent study conducted by Levvel Research for Yooz, Inc. confirmed that the earlier the payment, the larger the discount that most suppliers are willing to accept. The research also found that organizations with automated AP systems report a reduced volume in paper invoices, quicker approval of invoices, improved visibility of unpaid invoices, increased employee productivity and a lower overall cost of AP programs.

The study projected that demand for automated data capture solutions will continue, as restaurants seek to reduce time- and resource-consuming manual data entry and increasingly embrace technologies like blockchain and predictive analytics.

Already, the U.S. foodservice market is ripe for this shift. Although there are regulatory and tax differences between the U.S. and other nations that have somewhat slowed the rate of digitization of AP in this country, more businesses are using technologies in back-office applications. As the study from Levvel Research indicated, diversifying software options are helping to enable change, along with the growing embrace of digital transformation among both large organizations and smaller, independent businesses, like restaurants, that appreciate the scalability and nimbleness of automation.

While it may not be a question of whether an AP department should automate—it should—there are some questions as to exactly howa restaurant’s AP function should shift over to digital. A cloud-based smart invoice and payment solution that leverages advanced technologies like artificial intelligence-driven smart data extraction can improve control and cycle times without the need to overhaul other systems in place, like legacy ERP systems.

The cloud-based platform from Dallas-based Yooz, Inc. is an example of a tool that provides powerful, easy-to-use purchase-to-pay automation solutions to deliver speed, savings and security with a zero-risk subscription. The solution leverages artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics process automation (RPA) technologies and can be seamlessly integrated with more than 200 financial systems.

Offered as an iOS and Android mobile app for complete and secure accessibility anytime and anywhere, Yooz features platforms that are scanned and monitored for malware detection, application and perimeter vulnerability risks and SSL certificate validation. Users can upload invoices via traditional methods, such as scan, email, import, eInvoice and mobile device, and can pay with virtual cards, checks or ACH within the same platform in a secure environment. A rich reporting dashboard allows for easy and accessible reporting, and month-by-month graphs track key performance and operational metrics. 

For more information on the Yooz platform and about the Levvel Research report, 2019 Payables Insight Report: Understanding the Value of Holistic Invoice-to-Payment Automation for Enhanced Business Outcomes,” visit GetYooz.com, email info@us.getyooz.com or call 832-384-9669.

This post is sponsored by Yooz

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