The age-old adage ‘Time is Money’, has held its relevance all through the ages and when talking about the core of finance, we know that the ability to time travel is essentially where the difference lies. By time travel we mean the movement of resources from the present to the future as in the case of savings and vice versa in the case of financing. For businesses, the provision of moving resources in time, keeping in mind accountable factors such as saving and financing can actually have a profound impact on the resilience as well as the effectiveness of supply chains. It is a well-known fact that the adjustment of resources in time, can very well lead to adjustment of costs. Hence let’s take a look at the automation of P2P solutions, their evolution so far and what the future looks like.
- The Journey So Far:
Manual supply chains inevitably end up adding unnecessary lead times as well as expenses to a supply chain. The involvement of various parties and the high scope of human-errors present very limited opportunities to facilitate, so-called time travel.
This, has led to Procure-to-pay being labelled as a ‘back-office” function, but the actual fact remains that poor flow of information leads to inefficiency and slowing down of business.
P2P automation, thus, remains one of the most important yet underachieved improvements that are needed by supply chains today, and its importance to any data-driven supply chain cannot be undermined. As the world moved towards data-driven businesses, the exponential expansion of data continues to complicate the management of data quality, however, if done right it can actually facilitate new opportunities for P2P automation.
- The Way Ahead:
With an automated/modernized P2P process, organizations become better equipped to make strategic decisions, regarding the management of working capital, due to increased information/transparency. Bringing the two aspects of physical and financial into a platform that is single-networked, can create streamlines/compliant P2P and order-to-cash transactions, giving buyers and sellers access to early cash-flow visibility.
Finance in supply chains is forward-looking and looks at moving resources from the future to the present, thus providing the suppliers access to capital, all through the transaction lifecycles. This, can also help in the secure production of delivery, generating of savings, resource movement etc.
Thus, by automating P2P, businesses can not only look at the automation of internal processes, but processes that in the long run can have positive impact of commerce, as well as customer relationships. The fact remains, that, as buyers pay attention to partnering with suppliers, in order to ensure efficient/healthier performances, P2P automation can hence facilitate better planning and access to capital, which can, in turn, help businesses in unlocking resources that can help them move freely as per the need of the hour.