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A Guide to the Requirements for Digitalizing Invoice Processing: With a Free Template

One of the most important tasks of project management on the part of the company is the creation of a detailed specification sheet. In this article, you will learn what the specification sheet is needed for and what requirements it must fulfill. And best of all: We will support you with a professionally prepared template for the creation of an individual specification for the digitization of invoice processing in your company.

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There are many excellent reasons why you should digitalize incoming invoice processing in your business. Processes are accelerated and costs minimized. Lots of potential error sources are eliminated, the process becomes more transparent and compliance is bolstered. In order to truly reap these benefits, however, your company needs to find the right solution and implement it in a targeted manner together with a solution provider. A requirements specification is paramount for software projects, especially for invoice projects that are somewhat more complex. This is because it provides you and your future solution provider with a detailed overview of the requirements that the incoming invoice project has to meet.

It’s important to emphasize that digitalizing invoice management is not merely a technical project. After all, digitalizing processes has an impact on many established, mostly paper-based work procedures and will change many long-standing habits of your employees. To ensure success in day-to-day business later down the line, it’s crucial that the technical side of the project goes as seamlessly as possible and without problems. This is how you guarantee that the changes are embraced and appreciated by the users in the best possible manner.

Requirements Specification – A Crucial Part of Project Management

As far as the technical aspects of the project are concerned, the implementation must be seamless and the chosen solution must prove itself later on by actually meeting expectations. This requires excellent project management. In our experience, most companies can manage this very well with internal resources – provided they cooperate with a competent provider.

One of the most vital tasks of project management on the part of the company is creating a detailed requirements specification. In this blog post, you’ll discover why a requirements specification is needed and what it has to include. And best of all, we support you with a professionally prepared template to help you create a customized requirements specification to digitalize incoming invoice processing in your organization.

What is a Requirements Specification for Digital Invoice Management?

With a requirements specification, you determine what requirements a solution for digtalizing incoming invoice processing should meet from your company’s perspective. Among other things, this could include aspects such as the technical environment of the ERP solution you use – but also the tasks it should perform in day-to-day operations and the cost implications of the project. Not to mention questions about the software’s licensing and organizational considerations, e.g. the vital question about when the solution would be ready for use in the company.

It’s important that preparing a requirements specification doesn’t require any technical or product know-how, but rather is formulated from the perspective of the company as a client. You write down as precisely as possible all the wishes and tasks that are to be fulfilled or taken over by the software at the end of the project. In doing so, you shouldn’t think from a technical perspective, but rather stay completely focussed on your needs and ask for process-related solutions.

Free Specification Template

In the requirements specification, you document the entirety of your requirements for an invoice solution. With this, you create the basis for a successful incoming invoice project.

Download Specification Template

What is the Purpose of a Requirements Specification?

You’ll have already dealt with many of the details and aspects that appear in a requirements specification by the time you have to draw it up. This is because many of the things that appear in a requirements specification have already played a crucial role for you in selecting a suitable solution for processing incoming invoices. It’s very likely that you have already created lists or plans that contain many of the same things that appear in a requirements specification.

A requirements specification defines the most recent version of your requirements for a digital incoming invoice processing system. You also define the catalog of requirements you have previously drawn up. It’s created at the time you approach a selected provider to receive a concrete project offer or to start a project. A requirements specification is used by the provider or contractor as the basis for creating a functional specification that outlines how the project will be implemented.

What Is the Difference Between a Requirements Specification and a Functional Specification?

In practice, the terms requirements specification and functional specification are often used interchangeably. This isn’t correct, though. While a requirements specification, as explained above, describes the requirements of a project – such as the digitalization of incoming invoice processing – from the customer’s point of view, a functional specification describes how these requirements should be implemented in the project for all project participants from the contractor’s perspective.

In other words, a requirements specification provides the rough concept for a software project, whereas a functional specification as a fine concept provides the script according to which the project is implemented from a practical perspective. This means that a functional specification is always more comprehensive than a requirements specification. In addition to the project goals, it also specifies all important technical measures and contains a detailed schedule for the implementation of the project. This way, a requirements specification and functional specification become the basic means of communication whereby the client and contractor agree on the design and implementation of a project.

What Belongs in a Requirements Specification for Introducing Invoice Processing Software?

As stated earlier, the purpose of a requirements specification is to communicate the expectations of the project to the contractor on the one hand, and to enable the contractor to use the information contained in it to create a functional specification that will steer the project in the right direction on the other. In order for this to work, a requirement specification for the implementation of an invoice processing software, like easy invoice, should cover the following aspects:

  • Overall project goals: This could be more generic, such as improving current turnaround times or more concrete, such as having the ability to process electronic invoice formats.
  • Framework conditions, such as a predefined schedule with milestones that must be adhered to or a certain budget limit that must not be exceeded.
  • Current state: This describes the technical conditions under which incoming invoice processing takes place and how the processes related to invoice management are currently set up.
  • A precise target definition: This refers to the concrete requirements that will be placed, e.g. on incoming invoices in the future digital workflow or which interfaces must be integrated into this workflow.
  • In our experience, invoice approval should also be included as a separate section in a requirements specification for an invoice management software solution, as it represents a complex process step to which the implemented solution must be very precisely tailored.

In five steps: How to find the right software for incoming invoice processing

Do you want to digitize your invoice management with software? This guide, including a practical checklist, will help you find the right solution for your company.

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The Bottom Line: With a Structured Template, a Requirements Specification Is Very Quick and Easy to Create

At first hearing, the term “requirements specification” sounds like a rather large burden. However, once you understand what a requirements specification is needed for, the task of drafting it immediately becomes a little easier. Since implementing invoice processing software is always relatively similar, this task can be simplified even further. This is why we’ve created a template that serves as a valuable guide and helps you in getting a large part of the preparation work done more quickly. It works for any type of company and can be used for any solution available on the market.

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