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The road to digital transformation is unique for each company. However, procurement professionals across all industries and regions of the globe tend to ask themselves the same questions: What are some easy ways I can save time and money in my current processes? Where do I start? What should I be looking for in a solution?

While it’s difficult to fully answer these inquiries in a simple blog, here are three guidelines to consider when choosing an invoicing and payment solution – along with insights on how SAP Ariba can help. Meeting these goals will enable you to boost productivity and savings throughout the invoice-to-pay cycle.

  • Focus on decreasing human interventions

  • Help Procurement work with Finance to optimize financial models

  • Incorporate global capabilities that address cross-border needs

Decrease human interventions

Decreasing the need for human interventions frees employees from onerous, repetitive tasks and allows them to focus on higher-value work. One of the most effective ways to achieve this is by flagging exceptions earlier in the process. Within SAP Ariba Invoice Management, this happens when your supplier sends you the invoice. The solution identifies potential issues based on a customizable set of exceptions, and sends any noncompliant invoice back to the supplier with a notification about what they need to address – enabling them to quickly see and resolve the root cause of the issue.

Optimize financial models

Procurement and Finance sometimes have adversarial relationships in companies. There’s no silver bullet to solve this problem, but SAP Ariba offers tools that are beneficial to both teams’ goals. Our suite of solutions delivers unique capabilities to help you build an effective working capital management strategy. This includes supply chain financing, which allows you to get favorable extended payment terms while enabling your suppliers to get paid early or on time through a banking partner. Or you and your suppliers can use SAP Ariba Discount Management to dynamically set payment terms that provide a discount for paying early. For example, if you have a 60-day net term, your supplier can select from a sliding scale of early payment options, perhaps starting at 2% on day one sliding down to 0% at the full term. These solutions and others can be customized to your business to make Procurement and Finance more successful.

Address cross-border needs

In the modern world, almost every company has suppliers based in another country. And as supply chain complexity increases, so do compliance failures – which can result in fines or delayed shipments. SAP Ariba solutions help your organization comply with tax legislation and other e-invoicing requirements in more than 190 countries and 70+ currencies. You can set configurations for up to 40 business rules at a country level and apply them on templates relating to domestic, cross-border, and intra-EU trade.

As you think about your digital transformation decreasing human interventions, optimizing financial models, and addressing cross border needs are three examples of how SAP Ariba can help.  However, this may just be the beginning of your journey, or you may have other challenges that your business is facing.   For more information about our Invoicing and Payment solutions go to https://www.ariba.com/solutions/solutions-overview/financial-supply-chain.  There are also questions and answers about the full range of SAP Ariba products here: https://answers.sap.com/tags/73554900100700001921.