Knowing when and where to start implementing new technology is tricky for any business. Costs and complications alone often steer businesses away from the latest advancements, but some experts believe electronic invoicing adoption is one of the best stepping stones for a gradual transition into 21st century technology.
According to professional services firm EY and their Worldwide Electronic Invoicing Survey 2018, electronic invoicing, also known as e-invoicing, digitizes invoicing documentation between a supplier and a buyer. Unlike paper invoicing, which costs more than $8 per page, e-invoices widdle the price down to $0.35. The survey broke down the quantitative and qualitative advantages to e-invoicing, the former including improved productivity and cash flow.
"Together with electronic storage, e-invoicing can help to serve the corporate responsibility agenda, by eliminating the need for paper and reducing the carbon footprint," the survey states. "These aspects can have a positive impact on the company's image and relationships with its customers."
In France, for example, for every 6,000 paper invoices processed, those using the technology will complete roughly 90,000 e-invoices. While paper invoices can take up to two weeks to complete, e-invoices are finished within three days, with a rate of 80% dematerialization.
From a qualitative perspective, e-invoicing limits risks of error and gives employees the opportunity to spend time on more demanding tasks. The costs and time to implement might be risky for businesses, but there are far more advantages in the long run.
—Andrew Michaels, editorial associate