Contracts are ideally only concluded with a minimal number of (preferred) suppliers, provided dependency on suppliers is not too much of an issue, and ideally the business only purchases goods from preferred suppliers and in accordance with the contracts.
For some time to come, people perform most of their business purchases manually. But dedicated purchases-to-pay technology can aid people in the choices they make as well as bring their purchases under management. For instance, by allowing only purchases made by preferred suppliers.
Depending on the commerce technology applied by suppliers, connections can be made with purchase-to-pay technology. This way, the business can purchase goods at the e-commerce sites of preferred suppliers, upon which they are automatically redirected to their own purchase-to-pay platform to make the purchase final.
The subsequent invoice or invoices that are sent by the supplier can be fully automatically processed and matched with the preceding purchase, without any human intervention required.
Even in cases where a match between invoice and PO does not occur, is purchase-to-pay technology capable of an automated follow-up depending on the type of mismatch. For instance, if the payment amount on the invoice deviates from the order, but all else is equal, then the invoice can be automatically returned to the supplier along with the reason for not accepting the invoice.
Processes such as these, including where (human) errors seem to occur, can be made visible with spend analytics. On its turn, spend analytics can then help to improve p2p processes, thereby gradually developing towards operational excellence.