SolutionsOversight works across all of your systems and functions to identify hidden spend process breakdowns that can cost you millions of dollars. Find out how we can support you across the enterprise.See overviewPartners & Integrations
If you’ve worked in Accounts Payable (AP), you know how easy it is to miss-key invoice details, submit multiple entries for the same invoice, and deal with lost discounts due to inefficient approval processes. Even the slightest detail, such as an extra digit in the dollar amount, or a transposition of numbers, can result in unnecessary cash leakage.
The fact is, when any type of manual effort is involved with the submission, review, or approval of an invoice, there is room for human error. Even the best ERP system controls, coupled with automatic approval processes and post-payment sample auditing, won’t catch every duplicate payment, over-payment, or payment to a wrong vendor.
Despite your best efforts to implement preventative controls, your organization is likely still leaking cash. Here’s why: Financial controls intended to cut down on fraudulent or unnecessary spend provide you with nothing more than a false sense of security.
Audit and ERP Controls are Insufficient and Easy to Circumvent
Even the best-run AP departments are prone to mistakes. It is unrealistic and inefficient to expect internal audit and AP departments to manually sift through invoices looking for potential duplicates. The human eye can’t catch everything that can go wrong.
While ERP systems can flag an exact duplicate, built-in controls are easy to bypass. Whether it is by accident or intentional, you will likely pay for an invoice twice when a typographical error is made, a vendor sends out an invoice to one person and a statement to another, or you are even a penny off when entering the invoice amount.
Controlling cash leakage becomes even more difficult in cases where invoices are received through multiple channels and locations, paid with multiple methods, or when vendor master records are less-than pristine.
Auditing and Compliance Technology Boosts Your Teams Performance
Software that is powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and monitors 100 percent of all transactions across your invoices, payments, and vendor data can effectively target the fraud, waste, and errors that slip past your controls help stop the leakage. Here’s how:
Using fuzzy matching, invoices that closely match are easier to spot. More effective than exact matching, similarity analysis is applied to invoice numbers to identify typos and transpositions.
Identifying invoice outliers by vendor based on amount, currency, and frequency. This may include invoices that are above average for a vendor, an increase in volume of invoices, and invoices for rounded amounts, which are typical among fraudsters.
Flagging out-of-sequence invoice entries and off-cycle payments, including weekend and holiday payments. When an invoice payment is off schedule, it typically warrants further investigation.
Detecting Duplicate vendor records based on names, addresses, tax ids, bank accounts and other attributes.
Identifying missing or incomplete vendor data and flagging vendors with invalid or suspicious addresses. Correcting missing information can be the easiest way to cut vendor risk. It also pays to look for fictitious vendors, for example vendors that match employee files.
Highlighting root causes of errors so you can address them directly, while determining how to tighten controls and processes at the same time.
The Right Technology Can Save Your Team Time and Prevent Loss
Perfection is never possible, especially when it comes to human behavior, but the right technology can make all the difference. Look for a software solution that combines and analyzes data from multiple payment platforms and uses both pre-payment and post payment tools to build better visibility into AP errors, fraud, and misuse. With these tools, you will be set up to prevent cash leakage and quickly identify and recover anything that slips by..