Businesses Believe ‘Pen is Mightier’ As Just 5% Have “Fully Automated” Accounts Process

A vast number of the UK's small enterprises are still reliant on manual data entry or pen and paper for their accounts payable

Businesses Believe ‘Pen is Mightier’ As Just 5% Have “Fully Automated” Accounts Process

Just 5% of UK small businesses describe their accounts payable (AP) processes as ‘fully automated’, with a majority still using pen and paper for invoice and non-payroll payments, according to a report by V1.

Its survey of smaller enterprises revealed that 48% of all AP processes are still paper-based with only 47% semi-automated.

However, there are signs businesses are beginning to change their ways – 58% said they plan to increase automation with a further 39% ‘considering’ doing so in the future.

Businesses that still rely on manual intervention, for printing or posting documents etc, appear to be bearing the brunt of extra costs with labour payments amounting to 62% of total AP expenses.

With regards to mobile AP, only 22% of those surveyed said theyhave the capability to perform tasks such as authorising invoices on mobile devices but 40% are planning to introduce it in the near future.

Janette Martin, managing director of V1, commented: “With the technology available today, there is no reason for businesses to still rely on manual, paper-based processes, so it is encouraging that 97% are planning on or considering increasing automation in AP processes to unlock efficiencies.”

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