“Every month, when we process invoices for payments, we receive many incomplete submissions. The worst part is, when you ask where the Purchase Order is, they just say they can’t find it – it’s lost!”
This was but one of the many complaints we heard when we were speaking to the Finance Executive of an SME. The company had branded itself as being technologically savvy with many external-facing web platforms, but its internal processes were still entirely paper-based.
Even though they had recently upgraded onto a cloud accounting system, all their purchases were still being recorded on paper. So every month, it was Finance’s responsibility to collect all the invoices from the staff, manually check through and also key in the purchases for the month.
What’s the issue with paper-based processes?
Firstly, it is impossible to track changes on paper forms. Was the form properly filled in before the supervisor’s approval was obtained, or were these changes added in later? With paper forms, there’s no way to know when changes have been made, or if it were the requestor who made the changes.
Secondly, to ensure proper Governance, Finance has to scrutinise each and every single piece of paper form. When you consider how many forms each purchase could require – you can easily see how much time that takes up.
Not only that, when your approvers are not in the office, purchases are put on hold because there’s no way of getting them to sign off forms to move forward with purchasing.
What can you do?
An eProcurement system helps to solve these problems by moving every step of the procurement process to a digital platform, allowing the process to be truly paperless. Everything from Purchase Request, Approvals Supplier Quotations, Purchase Order and Invoices can be digitally created and automatically saved for later retrieval. Digital forms also mean that it’s easy to send information from one person to another – your supervisors can even give their approvals while on overseas business trips.
You can do accomplish all of this with TenderBoard, but we go much further than just digitization – we automate your procurement processes as well. No more worrying about whether the correct approvals have been sought for each purchase – the system automatically routes forms to the correct approvers for you. Purchase Orders and Goods Receipt Notes can be automatically generated based on quotations provided by your suppliers.
At the end of the day, when the auditors come around, there is no longer any worry about missing papers – all the information you need is available at the click of a button, and you can rest assured that everything has been done in accordance with your company policies.
“We still have one more booklet of Purchase Order forms”, shared the Finance Executive. “And I’m glad that we will never have to print them any more.”