Holistic P2P delivers synergy but you need to take a step back to see how. By embracing the whole of the end to end process across finance, procurement and the supplier’s organisation, benefits can be unlocked that remain hidden when these elements operate in isolation. Apparently unconnected projects within the purchase to pay spectrum can be joined together to deliver better results. The following examples illustrate the point.
The correct steps to take to implement holistic P2P very much depend on the starting point. An immature organisation may have to work hard simple to get to the starting line. Others may already have reached a high level of maturity, but whatever the starting point, it is worth going back to basics and beginning with a high level audit assessing your level of P2P maturity.
It doesn’t take a mathematical genius to understand the business case for some purchase to pay initiatives. Dynamic discounting - exchanging a discount in return for early payment - can give a return on capital of over 30%. Reverse factoring and other supply chain finance methods can substantially increase DPO and AP automation can reduce costs by 50%. But despite the compelling business case, most organisations remain firmly in the 20th century when it comes to purchase to pay optimisation. If the benefits are so great, why are more businesses not grasping the opportunity?
The purchasing card is a great business tool. It empowers people to make purchases without the need for a complex and often expensive purchasing process. When a low value item costs less than the cost of the purchasing process itself, it makes sense to cut through the purchase to pay red tape.
But the purchasing card is beginning to show it age. It hasn't really kept up with technological change surrounding it. The merchant fees are excessive, in a low interest rate economy the business case makes no sense and as far as reporting goes, purchasing cards have been trumped by electronic invoicing. Is it the end of the road for the purchasing card?
Basware has announced the first e-invoicing agreement of its kind with the State Treasury of Finland. Under the agreement, companies that do not yet have e-invoicing capabilities, can send their invoices to the state in electronic format, free of charge. Using the Basware Supplier Portal, even the smallest suppliers can now easily shift to e-invoicing and start to benefit from optimized cash flow, better working capital management and lower processing costs.