Notorious for being time-consuming, manual processes consume a lot of time for businesses. This is caused by relying on spreadsheets to handle core accounting functions that could otherwise be completed in seconds or minutes, rather than hours or days. Not to mention every manual process is prone to human error, which could lead to additional costs, delays, and issues.
This is where automation steps in. By automating essential accounting tasks for a business with software, processes can be sped up significantly and the risk behind it is greatly reduced.
Accounting Process Automation Explained
Accounting process automation (APA) requires the use of software solutions to automate various financial and accounting tasks within a company. APAs have been adopted by many business owners and leaders so that less efficient and less accurate manual processes can be a thing of the past.
Benefits of Accounting Process Automation
APA offers faster, smoother, and more accurate competition of accounting tasks for businesses. This more efficient process gives businesses a wide range of benefits that are enjoyed internally and even by customers. Here are some of the most common benefits.
- Free up time. Spend less time dealing with time-consuming, manual tasks and focus time on business growth.
- Reduced operating costs. Automation requires much less human intervention and is much faster. This in turn translates into being more cost-efficient.
- Higher quality data. Manual data entry can lead to data errors, which tend to increase as a business grows and there is more of a demand from the accounting department.
- Improved data access. With data in a central location, accessing it is much easier than systems that differ across departments.
- Streamlined processes. Automatic document uploading, inventory tracking, and more can eliminate bottlenecks in processes around a business.
- Healthier business relationships. Faster and more accurate AP and AR processes avoid mishandled invoiced and delayed payments to maintain solid relationships with customers and vendors.
Challenges of Accounting Process Automation
As with any new technology, there are some challenges that may present themselves, however, they rarely outweigh the benefits.
- Employee training. With new technology comes the need to train employees on the newest systems. Learning a new APA software will require upskilling every employee, but it will pay off in the end.
- Updated workflows are needed. Updating the process in which things are done must be adapted to the new APA. Not having an established workflow for different tasks can lead to chaos within a business.
- Change management. Accounting teams must be encouraged to adapt to the changes of new software in place. Knowing that their jobs will be made easier will help!
Accounting Tasks to Automate
Businesses adopt APA at their own pace, where some will automate everything at once and others will proceed with the areas they need the most assistance with first. Here are some of the most common that businesses will automate from the start.
- Accounts payables
- Accounts receivables
- Financial closes
- Expense reporting
- Sales processes
Automate with NetSuite
NetSuite's cloud accounting software provides businesses that are ready to move away from spreadsheets or entry-level software with a complete accounting solution. It centralizes their data and makes it accessible all throughout the business, thus requiring less time to be spent on various accounting tasks.
To learn more about NetSuite and what it could do for your business, reach out to the team at AccountingDepartment.com today. AccountingDepartment.com is a full-charge bookkeeping, controller, and advisory services provider that is here to serve you and your business!