A 2014 Accounting Today article listed Big Data as one of the main issues that accountants face. In fact, the 2014 AICPA Survey on International Trends in Forensic and Valuation Services found that 85 percent of businesses expected to spend more time on electronic data analysis or Big Data.

Effectively managing cash is increasingly dependent on real-time financial data. Consider that 40 percent of finance executives surveyed by IOFM rank cash flow analysis as their top job metric.

Alas, paper-based processes make it hard for businesses to leverage financial data, ‘Big’ or otherwise:

• Key information is not captured
• Data is poorly organized
• Information is not timely
• Systems are not well-integrated
• Decision-makers don’t have access to key variables

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Forty-five percent of controllers say that a lack of visibility into invoices and payables data is the biggest challenge in their accounts payable department, IOFM’s Senior Finance Executive Survey found. Forty-two percent of controllers say the handling, management and retrieval of invoices and payables information is their accounts payable department’s biggest challenge.

Accounts payable solutions such as NexusPayables improve real-time visibility into financial data by delivering actionable information such as:

• On-time payment percentage
• Spend visibility and trends
• Category spend and volume
• Spend to supplier ratio
• Supplier performance metrics
• Procurement process metrics
• Accounts payable value and volumes
• Accounts payable process metrics
• Payment and discount capture metrics
• Team productivity metrics

All of this helps improve operational effectiveness and enhance working capital management.