Business invoicing can be a time-consuming and costly processes. Many companies, especially small businesses, still create invoices by hand, printingthem, stuffing envelopes for mailing, and then waiting for either a check or a call for a credit card payment. Once a check is received from the customer, the business owner has to record the payment, reconcile the account, and then leave the business and deposit the checks or take the time to process credit card payments.
All of that creates a lot of opportunities for mistakes to be made. The more a business owner spends on accounting, which is very important, the less time they are spending on developing their business and providing customer service. Often they end up hiring someone else to handle all of these details, which is yet another expense.
Electronic Invoice Presentment and Payment (EIPP) provides a solution that increases productivity, reduces mistakes, and allows the business owner to spend more time growing their business and developing relationships with their customers. Some large corporations have entire departments dedicated to just invoicing and receivables. As technology developed, these large corporations spent hundreds of thousands of dollars developing EIPP systems which allowed them to refocus their personnel on sales, management, and reduce costs.
As accounting software became more accessible to smaller businesses, EIPP became more affordable and available as well. Affordability increased with the reliability of Software as a Service (SaaS) products. Now, EIPP can tie into most desktop accounting systems or a business owner can use a system that is managed entirely over the internet.
EIPP is a process whereby a business owner can build automation into their invoicing process, and the process can be integrated with their own accounting software or used with cloud software. EIPP offers several benefits:
- Payee can easily update online fields and totals based on customer changes
- Terms can be automatically imported based on the customer
- Recurring charges can be automated
- Payment options can be included as part of the invoice.
Automating the system increases accuracy of the invoice, which in turn reduces the likelihood of disputes. The invoice is sent by email, delivered through a web portal or mobile device, or as part of a recurring charge. If it is sent as a recurring charge, the payment can be automatically processed. If sent via email or a web portal, payment can be immediately processed through the business’s merchant account or through a payment processor.
There are many options for EIPP solutions. These options range from purchasing software for use on your own systems, purchasing a service that interacts with your current system, or using internet based systems through cloud computing. As with everything, analyze your business operations to determine what features mean most to you, then research the many options available to find the best fit.
Ready to make the move to e-Invoicing and Presentment? Download our EBPP customer success story to learn how one distribution compnay has benefited from this valuable technology within their receivables processes.