As a concept, shared services has been around since the nineties. Through a focus on standardization to help streamline processes, this would not only lead to lower costs, but also improve control and services. As processes became standardized, the operation could be centralized in one location, the Shared Service Center.
Accounts Payable is probably the best example of a process that has thrived in shared services. Originally led by the centralization of procurement, in shared services Accounts Payable has been able to dedicate itself to service delivery, continuous improvement and operational excellence.
In its new environment, Accounts Payable Shared Services was first able to focus on what were, at the time, new technologies, OCR, workflow, electronic payments. But it was not until Accounts Payable and Procurement began to work together were they able to drive efficiency and control through initiatives such as ‘No PO, No Pay’ and e-invoicing.
At Tungsten Network we have seen this first hand. The companies that have been most successful in achieving their e-invoicing targets, Straight Through Processing, First Past Yield, On time Payment, have been those that have implemented e-invoicing together. We have also seen Accounts Payable and Procurement become further interlinked under the banner of ‘Procure to Pay’ with Global Process Owners responsible for all elements of the Purchasing and Payment cycle.
To learn more about the importance of Accounts Payable and Procurement working together, and to find out how e-invoicing can improve your Accounts Payable Shared Services, download insights today.