Accounts payable automation is more than just a way to reduce costs. It’s also essential to improving reporting and analytics.

That’s according to a survey of accounts payable and financial operations leaders conducted by Ardent Partners. The survey found that while real estate companies and other businesses are still keen on reducing their accounts payable costs, enhancing visibility is becoming a bigger priority.

Here are the top accounts payable priorities uncovered by Ardent Partners:

  • Reducing accounts payable costs is a priority for 37 percent of organizations – down from 63 percent
  • Improved accounts payable reporting and analytics increased in priority to 40 percent, up 3 percent
  • Improved collaboration with suppliers is a priority for 30 percent of respondents, double the percentage from Ardent Partner’s previous survey
  • Improved supplier connectivity was identified by 28 percent of respondents, up from 19 percent
  • Improved collaboration with procurement was identified by 31 percent of respondents, up from 27 percent
  • Better linking of peer-to-peer processes and systems was identified by 27 percent of respondents, up from 25 percent

Ardent Partners believes there are several reasons for the shifting priorities:

  • The CFO and other C-level executives can use accounts payable to chart patterns in invoice data, “painting a vivid picture of corporate health.”
  • Spend- and supplier-specific data can be used to uncover trends and patterns that can inform future supplier negotiations.
  • Businesses are focusing more on collaboration as well as electronic connections to suppliers and procurement, and increased accounts payable processing is a natural part of this shift of focus.

What are your team’s accounts payable priorities?

Download the case study to learn how The Peterson Companies, an industry leading commercial real estate company, has used AP Technology to drive good business intelligence.