procurement automation
Published: | Time to read: 6 minutes

How Procurement Automation Streamlines Purchasing

Matt Wald
Author:Matt Wald

Procurement automation is a critical element to full end to end procure to pay automation.

Streamlining the purchasing process by implementing automated procurement will save your organization time and money by making your purchasing team more efficient, data driven, and productive.

What is Procurement Automation?

Procurement automation speeds up the purchase and procurement process. 

It frees staff from repetitive and time-consuming tasks. So procurement automation allows them to focus on business-critical activities like vendor relations and finding better prices.

It also significantly reduces purchasing overhead costs.

CoreIntegrator’s procure to pay automation solutions automate the most time-consuming steps of purchasing.

Use our savings calculator to see how much you could save

Purchase Requisition Automation

When it’s time to purchase goods or services, someone familiar with the purchase submits a purchase requisition.

The requisition is based on the budget and price quotes received from vendors.

Then the purchase requisition goes through an approval process.

Depending on the size of the purchase and the size of your organization, this may be a long and painful process full of roadblocks and delays.

Worse, purchase requisitions get lost or buried in someone’s in-box in manual paper processes. This can lead to embarrassment, missed opportunities and supply and logistics nightmares.

Purchase requisition automation solves those problems. It provides error and delay-free requisition creation and approvals, speeding your procurement process significantly.

Once created, managers can use purchasing automation to approve purchase requisitions with one click on any device from anywhere in the world!

purchase requisition automation
Purchase Requisition Automation

Purchase Order Automation

After the purchase requisition is approved, a business produces a purchase order that can be provided to the vendor who has been awarded the business.

Done manually or on an ad hoc basis this can be incredibly tedious and time-consuming. It’s also prone to errors where the details of the purchase requisition are not properly conveyed in the purchase order.

And getting confirmation from a vendor regarding the PO can also waste a lot of your time.

But with automated purchase orders and confirmation, your POs are automatically generated out of purchase requisitions. No tedius transcribing and no transcription errors!

And our procure to pay automation solutions come with built-in PO acceptance automation.

PO Automation
All of our Procure to Pay Solutions Include PO Automation
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Receiving Automation

When your products arrive you need to make sure that you received what you paid for.

Is your staff scribbling notes and crossing items off of a piece of paper as they are delivered? If so, you know this a recipe for mistakes, overpayments and fraud.

Instead, using receiving automation, your staff simply ticks each item off as delivered or partially delivered in your purchase order queue.

Any items not delivered will stay open in your purchase order queue – even if they are part of a partial delivery. And receiving automation identifies any discrepancies through PO matching.

purchasing automation
Receiving Automation

PO Matching Automation

Once your purchase is complete and product delivered it’s time for purchase order matching. The details should be the same on the PO, the packing slip/receipt and the invoice.

Matching the PO to the invoice alone is 2-way matching. Matching the PO to the invoice and the packing slip or receipt is 3-way matching.

Purchase order matching identifies any discrepancies in the three critical PO purchasing documents: purchase orders, order receipts/packing slips, and invoices. 3-way matching of PO invoices saves your business from overspending or paying for an item that you did not receive.

Done manually, PO matching is the single most tedious process in the entire procure to pay process. Every line of a PO must be matched against every line in an invoice and every line in a receipt or packing slip. Any discrepancy among the three documents must be identified and researched.

But A/P One Enterprise for enterprise-sized companies as well as A/P One AP automation for small and medium sized companies provide automated PO matching. Our systems automatically compare the three critical PO documents and highlight any discrepancies between them.

PO Matching Automation
3-Way PO Match Automation using SmartMatch

And now you get the benefit of revolutionary functionality called SmartMatch that can automatically perform 3 way matching WITHOUT a part number or SKU. Click here to read more about SmartMatch!

Get a free consultation with an AP automation expert today!

Payment Automation

The last step of a purchase is payment.

For many companies this means a paper invoice approval goes to an accounting clerk who writes or prints a paper check that has to be signed then be mailed.

Manual systems are slow, inefficient and time consuming. And are also highly susceptible to fraud.

Payment automation solves all of those problems.

Payment automation is the final step in full end to end procure to pay automation.

And you can choose to have approved invoices sent to your ERP for payment.

Or you can choose to use CoreIntegrator’s ePay solution to set up autopayments by eCheck, ACH, wire transfer or Virtual Credit Card.

If you use virtual credit cards to pay your invoices and earn cash back for every invoice that your company pays!?

The Benefits of Procurement Automation

That’s a high-level look at what procurement automation is.

But let’s dig a bit deeper into the benefits of procurement automation.

Procurement automation speeds up the approval process.

One of the biggest frustrations purchasing staff face is when procurement requests get stuck in the approval process.

Customers tell us that before they installed CoreIntegrator purchasing automation software, they lost purchasing opportunities because they couldn’t approve requisitions in time.

But with our procurement automation in place our customers quickly and easily approve purchase requisitions – no matter how complicated the approval hierarchy is. And if a requisition gets stuck in the approval process they have immediate insight into where the holdup is.

PO approval automation
Automated Purchase Approvals

And by automating procurement processing, our customers enable quick placement of orders. And they remove redundant processes. All of which significantly cuts down their time of ordering cycle.

Their procurement staff are able to accomplish more in a shorter amount of time, and then use the time they gain to attend to more important business issues.

Automating procurement provides visibility into your vendor spend.

In business, information is power.

Procurement automation helps transform your company into a data driven organization.

For procurement and purchasing this means having accurate data about:

  • past vendor quotes
  • purchases
  • contracts
  • order history
  • other procurement data

And it means having that data at your fingertips with the ability to build KPI dashboards around it.

By implementing procurement automation, you get a consolidated view of actual purchase expenses in real time. This means your purchasing team can make data-driven decisions when making new purchases. 

And doing that means finding the best deals and saving money.

Procurement automation facilitates fast and clear communication with suppliers and vendors.

Happy vendors make for good business.

And the key to happy vendors is a clear line of transparent communication with your suppliers.

Procurement automation allow buyers and suppliers to have real-time insight to track order status and includes automated PO confirmation.

With an automated procurement solution suppliers can quickly respond with bids. And buyers can quickly assign the order to the best quote available.

And since the whole process is visible to all the parties, it saves time and ensures optimal costs.

Plus, with total insight into the entire process, procurement automation allows for quick resolution of any disputes that may arise.

Learn everything about Invoice Processing here.

PO Automation Can Be Affordable!

PO automation software isn’t just for big corporations anymore. Now there’s A/P One accounts payable software for small to mid-market organizations.

In fact, any sized business that processes more than 250 POs per month can save time and money with A/P One.

Our subscription pricing model means you pay a small price per PO/invoice processed, starting at around $2 per invoice. But that price goes down to as low as $1 per invoice as PO/invoice volume goes up.

Your monthly cost is based on the number of invoices your business processes. No hidden costs or surprises!

That’s an amazing deal given that manually processing a SINGLE PO/invoice can cost a company anywhere from $14 to $20 in hard and soft costs.

Bottom Line – How Procurement Automation Streamlines Purchasing

Procurement automation eliminates tedious and time-wasting work. It speeds up your purchasing cycle while making it more reliable and accurate at the same time.

And transforming your purchasing process with procurement automation provides your procurement staff with real-time insights into the overall procurement cycle – insight that will save your company time and money.

Contact us today and let us show you how procurement automation can make purchasing fast and easy!

Get a free consultation with an AP automation expert today!