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7 ‘Do This, Not That’ Practices Every Organization Should Use

Many organizations incorporate poor practices into their accounts payable function without knowing it. Check out Mary Schaeffer's seven ‘Do This, Not That’ suggestions to eliminate these common problems.

  1. DO: Centralize the receipt of invoices.
    DON’T: Allow the vendor to decide where to send invoices.
  1. DO: Return unidentified invoices to the sender.
    DON’T: Try and determine who placed the order.
  1. DO: Establish and mandate the use of a rigid coding standard.
    DON’T: Allow each processor to enter data as they wish.
  1. DO: Review statements for open vendor credits on a regular basis.
    DON’T: Ignore the issue.
  1. DO: Mail all checks.
    DON’T: Return checks to the requisitioner.
  1. DO: Address the personal device issue.
    DON’T: Allow employees to do as they see fit.
  1. DO: Learn as much as possible about invoice automation.
    DON’T: Hope the issue will go away.

To learn more best practices and how you can avoid an internal control breakdown, download the full whitepaper here.

Fraud News and How to Prevent It

An Accounts Payable Manager at Carolina Steel Group, Angela Womack, has been convicted of multiple counts of wire fraud and money laundering.  Womack managed to create non-profit accounts named "IBOCF."  She made the checks payable to "International IBOCF" which were included on the company's vendor reports, even though it was not one of Carolina Steel Group's vendors. She altered internal accounting data and made the checks to appear to be paid to legitimate vendors.

Womack was sentenced to 70 months in prison along with three years of supervised release.  Womack is ordered to pay restitution of $2,857,201.85 and a special assessment of $300.00.  Read the full news article here.

Make sure your organization has strong internal controls in place. Here are a few tips on how to prevent fraud:

  1. Integrate the appropriate segregation of duties (one person per leg).
  2. Run frequent reports showing who has access to what. Be sure to take into consideration promotions and employees who left the company.
  3. Create a written, detailed expence policy for your organization.
  4. Compile daily bank reconciliations and check for unauthorized transactions.
  5. Automate your accounts payable process which will allow you to have an audit trail and set approval routes. It greatly reduces your risk of fraud when you know who did what when.

Check out our on-demand webinar on internal controls here.

SMBs are Embracing the Cloud

The cloud. You've probably heard the buzz about it and you might already be using it if you use social networking sites or online storage.  It plays a key part in our lives today and is changing business processes.

The cloud has played a significant role in the world of accounts payable automation, in particular paving the way for small to medium sized businesses to take advantage of it.  In the past, AP automation was limited to large enterprise companies who had the human and capital resources to implement this type of technology.  

Today, the flexibility of the cloud makes it a perfect fit for SMBs since it involves no excessive set up, infrastructure, storage, or ongoing maintenance costs. The ease-of-use, reduced costs, and scalability of the cloud are driving the SMB market to adopt AP automation.

SMBs interested in winning the game this year and beyond will gain quantifiable advantages through the adoption of AP automation.

To learn more about how SMBs are adopting AP automation, check out our new article here.

Happy Holidays from Anybill

                                 

It's the most wonderful time of the year, again!  However you're planning to spend your holiday season, we wish you the happiest of holidays from all of us here at Anybill!

Our office will close at 2:00 pm EST on Tuesday, December 24 and we will be closed on Wednesday, December 25 in observance of Christmas Day.  Our office will reopen on Thursday, December 26.

Happy Holidays!

Think Before You Blink

According to the Washington Business Journal, a woman from Maryland pled guilty to stealing $5 million from a non-profit over an eight year span.  She generated fake invoices, approved the invoices for payment, and deposited checks into accounts she had created.  She even created invoices and approved payments to a bridal shop she privately owns.

How can you prevent this from happening to your business?  It is important that you instill strong internal controls within your business and more importantly, implement a good transparent accounts payable process. Having clear duties for each working group is critical. No one person should handle more than one type of function.  It is also a best practice, within any industry, to review master vendor files on a regular basis to help detect and deter fraud.

Don’t let this happen to your business.  Take action and make sure you have strong, effective internal controls in place.

To read the full article from the Washington Business Journal, click here.

Winner Announced from the AFP Annual Conference

We're excited to announce JOHN DALY as the winner of our "The Way You Do the Things You Do" drawing from the AFP Annual Conference.

Everyone has their own way of doing things. In life and at work. So whether you like martinis shaken or stirred, the electric slide or harlem shake, or prefer PCs to Macs, it is all the same to us as long as you get AP automation your way. John won his choice of an iPad® or Surface™ and selected an iPad®.

            

Thank you to everyone who participated in our drawing and visited us during the AFP Annual Conference. We certainly enjoyed the conference and we hope you did too.

Congratulations, John!

Wherever You Are, Whenever You Want

Did you spend your last summer vacation worrying about paying invoices on time? Don't let that happen again.

With AP automation, you can kick back, relax, and enjoy the rest of your summer. Whether you’re boating or lounging on the beach, Anybill gives you 24/7 access along with greater control and visibility.

             

Learn more about end-to-end AP automation here.

Come into the Cloud with Us

As the Director of Sales at Anybill, I always try to stay up-to-date with industry trends in the cloud-based space that we operate in here at Anybill.

I came across this interesting article while reading the Washington Post this morning.  According to the article, Bessemer Venture Partners states that publicly traded cloud-based companies are now worth over 100 Billion!!!  A large number in its own right, but the kicker is that the number of companies that are public are only a small percentage of the total cloud-based companies out there.  Most cloud-based companies are still privately held, so they are not accounted for in the 100 billion.  What this tells me is that the cloud-based space is growing and growing still at a very rapid pace.  What may as started at a fad or idea is now very much a reality of how companies purchase, use, and access their software platforms.  Cloud-based platforms have multiple benefits.  A few come to mind:

  • Low cost of start-up, as you don't have to purchase hardware to run the applications
  • Lower cost of ownership, as you don't have to maintain software versions, manage new releases, and pay associated maintenance fees
  • Ease of access, being cloud-based makes your application accessible to anyone in your organization that has an internet connection

Companies, big and small, are changing the way they purchase and run their software platforms with the adoption of cloud.

Where does your organization grade on the cloud adoption scale?

Just Released: 2013 AP Automation Study

                        

Do you know the latest trends in AP automation? Stay up-to-date and don't let your organization fall behind.

The Institute of Financial Operations just released the 2013 AP Automation Study which covers the current state of AP, as well as:

  • Satisfaction with various technologies among adopters
  • Key automation drivers
  • Technology spending plans
  • Biggest obstacles to automation

Find out how your peers (and competitors) are reshaping their operations with emerging technologies.

Check out the new study here.

Want to build a best practice AP organization?

Join us for Part 3 of our 4-part webinar series with Mary Schaeffer of AP Now & Tomorrow to learn how to incorporate strong controls, best practices, and regulatory compliant practices into your AP process.

Details:
Date: Tuesday, August 13
Time: 1:00 pm ET

Mary will walk us through a checklist of strong foundation practices every organization should use.

Register here.

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