Small Accounting Systems and AP Automation


This is the last of a three-part installment on Accounts Payable Automation and accounting systems. Today I am writing about small systems and their relationship with AP Automation. If you are just joining me, take a look back at what I wrote for large system and medium size systems.

On With The Stuff

This one is difficult, smaller systems like QuickBooks or Peachtree  (also known as Sage 50) are excellent systems that company’s rely on to build their business, but as I wrote in yesterday’s article if medium size companies have a difficult time justifying AP Automation because of their lack of headcount reduction, smaller size companies and therefore accounting system aren’t even close to benefiting from time-saving because there are not that many people to free up… even percentages of time.

Why Do We Hate Filing Cabinets?

Hate is such a strong word… I don’t use it lightly but for some reason people hate filing cabinets. Working with accountants of any size company using any type of accounting system and when the discussion of getting rid of the filing cabinets comes up there are cheers and standing ovations


it might be safe to write that no one really likes filing and then having to go to the filing cabinet and look for something that is not there or was missed filed. For smaller size companies and therefore small accounting systems the idea of automating Accounts Payable has a direct positive impact on the filing and maintaining of invoices.

The Smallest

The smallest client I have ever worked with had 75 invoices per month. It was a single accounting person (I called this the combo role where they are the AP Entry Clerk, Controller, Director of AP, VP of Finance and CFO all in one) that worked at a small nursing home. As you can imagine there wasn’t too much time that could be saved with the data entry and there was defiantly no opportunity for headcount reductions, but there was plenty of interested in getting rid of the filing cabinets. Even though he was an accountant for a small organization this type of organization was highly regulated, so he spent a lot of his time putting together packets of invoices for project justification and audits (multiple types of audits). Getting rid of the paper in Accounts Payable was great for him, but having an electronic filing system that was always up to date and it was easy to retrieve invoices was what he really needed and got.

One Last Thing

The last bit of advice I want to give those of you that use a system like QuickBooks is look for AP Automation providers that are transactionally based. Because of the (generally) low volume of invoices in small companies there are Accounts Payable Automation companies out there that are traditionally based which means they only charge by the invoices. This is a great thing to look for because you will be able to get, and use the same software as the medium and big boys but only pay for the number of invoices that are processed through the system.

Thanks for reading… Next week I am going to write about Accounts Payable Automation and Purchase Orders… should be fun – stay tuned.

You Should Buy My Books!

To buy the book – The Argument to Automate – How Innovation Can INSPIRE Not Fire – click here to buy

(Also) To get your copy of The 8 Pitfalls of Accounts Payable Automation – click here to buy

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