Month: August 2019

How To Improve Your Accounts Payable System

You can’t run a business without spending because it comes with the package. You’ll need to buy stuff to fully operate your business. The majority of suppliers provide invoices whenever you purchase from them. Unfortunately, this can get chaotic along the way especially during busy days. How do you stay on top of things? If you don’t manage your invoices well it could result to unnecessary fees, late payments and quite possibly broken relationships. Avoid these by learning how to improve your accounts payable system.

The following are important steps that you need to do so you can finally take charge of your payables.

Choose To Go Paperless

Gone are the days when business owners had to manage piles and stacks of paperwork because now that we are living in the digital age, you can go paperless and still be able to organize everything. Electronic bills are just the same as paper, only they make the process ten times easier. With paper, there’s a possibility that it can get damaged or lost but with online billing, the invoices will always be available thereby lessening the chances of late payments and lost hard copies. When a vendor asks if you want paper or electronic invoice we encourage you to take the latter.

Create A System For Your Accounts Payable Workflow

The secret to an effective accounts payable system is repetition. Create a system that will allow your business to manage your invoices well from the moment you receive the invoice until the time you are able to pay for it. Find a place to safely keep all of your invoices and streamline them according to priority and date received.

Make Reminders

Busy people can easily get sidetracked and that includes you, especially during peak season. To keep all your invoices organized we suggest that you set up reminders so you can pay for everything before their due dates. These reminders will also let you know how much money you need to prepare for the payments. A majority of business owners use a calendar to organize their invoice dates, creating alerts to let them know when the due date is near.

Document Your Data

It is very important that you develop the habit of documenting your data so you can keep track of your invoices. As soon as you receive a bill, document it and save it in your file online. Examples of such documents include receipts, notices, purchase orders and of course, invoices. Saving these documents will keep you updated on how much money you are shelling out and who you are paying.

Make Sure All Contact Information Is Updated

At some point you’ll need to communicate with your suppliers and your vendors. The last thing you’d want is to spend time searching for their contact number. To make sure the process is smooth and efficient we recommend that you regularly update all of your vendors’ and suppliers’ contact details including their phone numbers, mailing addresses and their email addresses. Keep all these pieces of information in one place. Similarly, your vendors and suppliers also need to reach you so make sure that you inform them if you plan to change numbers, email address and mailing address.

When you are operating a business, especially if you have been in the industry for quite a while, you know that managing invoices and making payments can be burdensome. If you do not have an established system in place, it can get crazy and you might find yourself paying for fees as a result of delayed payments. If you follow these tips mentioned here you can take it easy and feel less stressed knowing that everything is paid for before its due date and every receipt, purchase order and invoice is saved in a designated online folder.

The Reality of Greenwashing and Going Paperless.

Greenwashing the Facts

Going paperless to save the environment, who could be against that? That is basically what major financial institutions, big box stores, power companies, Insurance companies and others claim to show how environmentally aware they are. The truth is something completely different. E-Waste is the actual outcome of going paperless. The hardware needed to bring about the switch to paperless requires constant repair or replacement, leading to an ever-growing environmental crisis. Computers, monitors, old printers, are shipped to dumping grounds in Africa or China, seeping into the groundwater, and creating a toxic soup of heavy metals and carcinogens. 

Recently, in the United States and Canada, 120 companies, have altered, or altogether removed their statements about being green and paperless. The change came about at the urging of Two Sides, a consumer advocacy group urging the continued use of paper for things like statements and bills. They pointed out that being certified green in the U.S. and Canada has to fall within the guidelines set forth by both the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, and the Competition Bureau of Canada. Both agencies require that credible and specific science-based fact to support a company's green claims. It has been found that more often than not, requirements are not being met even as companies still claim that they are paperless to benefit the environment. In fact, the claims are nothing more than a marketing ploy used as a way to manipulate and force more customers to use digital options. 

What is not understood by the companies who go paperless, or the public at large, print and paper is a far more sustainable model than paperless that takes up landfill and leaks pollutants into the environment. Trees, especially with fast-growing hybrids, are a renewable resource and paper is among the most highly recycled substances on Earth. It makes much more sense to use paper when it is actually green and is preferred by consumers.

Paperless is Not Popular

A recent study found that despite all the environmental claims companies make, and their focus on a paperless society, the average person does not want to feel they are being pushed into going paperless. The study also found that the majority of people feel that it is not only their preference to receive paper documents but also their right. They also see the word "paperless" as a ruse. Most people said that it is not truly paperless if a consumer has to print out a hard copy of their documents for things like applying for a job, or a mortgage. They also see the push for being more environmentally friendly as a convenient way to cut a popular service in order to save money.  The resistance against going paperless is so strong among consumers in the United States and Canada that a whopping 45% and 34% respectively said they would move to another provider such as a new bank or cellular provider. 

Paper is Green and Popular

The bottom line is that paper through the careful use of using trees at the right time and planting a new one to replace each that was used is a green option. It is clear from the data on the subject across the consumer spectrum; paper is more popular than paperless. It makes sense for companies who want to retain customers and truly make an impact on the environment to return to paper. Yes, some consumers prefer paperless, but they are in the minority.

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