Germany is the biggest market within the biggest economic region in the world and thanks to the German's decision on e-invoicing, the cost of doing business in the EU has just started to drop.
The news as reported by Christian Lanng is perfectly timed. It coincides with EXPP, the biggest e-invoicing conference in Europe, that kicks off next week and it comes at a time when the EU desperately needs a bit of good economic news. So why is this so important?
I get frustrated at the debates on e-invoicing. The ones that go on and on endlessly about which is the right standard to employ. What is and is not an electronic invoice? Who knows best about what to deploy where? My digital certificate is bigger than your digital certificate.
It's been over a decade since the e-business machine was mobilised and it began to evangelise the use of the internet to deliver supply chain efficiencies. There were some big claims made about how much public sector organisations could save - some of which were valid, others a little optimistic - and despite scepticism in some quarters, the UK government, like most across the world, recognised that the new purchase to pay solutions that were emerging could deliver significant value.
You know how useful standards are when you plug in an electrical appliance - the plug fits the socket. So it figures that we need an electronic invoice standard. We need the invoice plug to fit the AP socket. Right?
Count the number of B2B standards and regulations there are. That's how many reasons there are not to send electronic invoices.
The banks have known about the e-invoicing opportunity for years. More than one global bank was seriously investigating the concept as a means of generating transaction revenue before the turn of the century. Why is it then that over 10 years later do we still have no bank-led e-invoice offering and why have the banks elected to ignore what is a potentially serious threat to their core business?
Electronic invoicing can save millions. Manual process are inefficient. Errors create unnecessary work. In the 21st century, passing pieces of paper between organizations as a record of a routine business transaction is a modern day anachronism. It's bizarre and a little embarrassing. So why is your organization doing it?