5 NexusPayables Best Practices That Help Beat Industry Averages for Electronic Invoice Processing Time
What helps Nexus customers ingest invoices and prep them for payment in record time while using the Nexus electronic invoice processing platform?
At our 10th Nexus User Conference in San Antonio, TX, we reviewed these five NexusPayables best practices to get invoices processed in 5 days or fewer.
And, you can employ them too. You just need NexusPayables, this post and (if you want) a cold beverage too. Just keep it far away from the computer.
BEST PRACTICE 1: Encourage suppliers to use Nexus’s guaranteed and direct invoice delivery tools
Ingesting invoices can take an extraordinary amount of time (when you consider opening envelopes or combing through email chains). Companies can shorten the process dramatically by asking their suppliers to use either the NexusConnect portal or eInvoice tool. Both methods give suppliers guaranteed and quick invoice delivery to their customers’ Nexus accounts. And, all their invoices are trackable 24/7 in the NexusConnect portal.
NexusConnect: Suppliers using the NexusConnect portal simply log online, upload their invoice, add some details and click “submit”. They can then track the status of their invoices 24/7, without having to call or email their customers to ask where things stand. Nexus customers, meanwhile, can forget about duplicate and lost/misplaced invoices and reduce time spent communicating with vendors by as much as 75%).
eInvoice for bulk invoices: Other suppliers embrace Nexus’s eInvoice process for sending invoices in bulk through an API. Larger suppliers like HD Supply, Lowe’s Pro Supply/Lowe’s, Staples, Office Depot, Ferguson, Sherwin Williams, Grainger and Chadwell are already using Nexus’s eInvoice tool to send large volumes of invoices directly to their Nexus customers’ electronic invoice processing platform. Any Nexus customer can get setup to receive eInvoices from these same suppliers in a matter of weeks, since all the configuration is already done.
You won’t get any pushback from suppliers about using these tools either. Just consider their usage increase over the past few years:
BEST PRACTICE 2: Use fewer invoice approval workflows and standardize whenever possible
While Nexus customers can create an unlimited number of PO and invoice approval workflows in their electronic invoice processing platform, having too many workflows can be problematic. Invoice approvals can slow down, auditing can be trickier, and exceptions can mount.
Thus, it’s best to minimize the number of workflows in Nexus, audit them regularly, and use them wisely.
It’s also important to standardize workflows across the organization- with approver roles having the same types of approval thresholds no matter where they sit – i.e. an AP manager can approve up to $5K for any group of properties.
Pro tip: In NexusPayables, customers can use the Workflow Rules Report to view how many times an approval workflow has been used over the previous 12 months. If it hasn’t been used much or at all, customers can use this as an indicator that the workflow may be unneeded/can be deleted.
Not convinced? Check out these two companies who had vastly different invoice processing times – and then look at how many approval workflows they had.
BEST PRACTICE 3: Configure your NexusPayables dashboard to show invoice to dos
The NexusPayables dashboard is a great place to track invoice to-dos. Each NexusPayables user can customize their dashboard to show items that require their action and attention. For example, an AP Manager can set up their home screen to view invoices to review and invoices on hold. AP coders, meanwhile, can set up a totally different view to see only those invoices that await their indexing values.
BEST PRACTICE 4: Use mobile app for an electronic invoice processing system at your fingertips
Nexus’s OnTheGo application can be easily downloaded from the Apple or Google store. It makes it easy to keep up with invoices and other AP tasks even when employees are not in front of their computers. OnTheGo connects directly with a customer’s NexusPayables account and lets them create/approve purchase orders, create item lists (useful when tallying up what needs to be procured when doing property tours), search globally for invoices/POs/receipt/vendors, approve invoices, and more.
If an AP team member who has PO/invoice approval rights will be out on PTO, they can even set up delegations right in OnTheGo. They can designate the employee to whom to assign approval rights and specify the date range for this to be in effect, too.
BEST PRACTICE 5: Use electronic procurement catalogs and e-POs to centralize procurement and put invoices at your fingertips
While NexusPayables is an electronic invoice processing platform, it’s also an e-procurement tool. Customers can integrate their suppliers’ catalogs right into their Nexus platform and then assign permissions allowing authorized users (such as Maintenance and Property Managers) to place orders within the same system. It’s similar to shopping on any other e-commerce site, but better. The customers’ pre-negotiated pricing can be pulled in and spending can be controlled and centralized by requiring purchasers to create an electronic PO with each order.
Just how do these embedded supplier catalogs and e-purchase orders help customers process invoices more quickly? Because purchase orders give the AP team a full record of who placed an order, what they ordered, and why they ordered it. To get the invoice paid, all they have to do flip the PO.
Timely execution of AP
While winning “fastest invoice processing time” isn’t going to come with a trophy, the faster AP teams can process invoices, the better they can accurately forecast cash flow. With these tips, Real Estate AP teams can prep invoices for payment in record time while maintaining accuracy.