Accounts Payable in SAP®

To increase efficiency

EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions is the efficient tool to digitalise your accounts payable process directly in SAP®. Vendor invoices in paper format or invoices received electronically in various standardised formats are processed in a uniform, transparent way. Scanned paper documents or electronic invoices and the automatic recognition of invoice content represent the start of the overall process. After the transmission of the vendor invoice to SAP®, it is automatically processed as far as possible. The invoice documents are archived revision-proof across all processing steps and are available at the click of a button at any time. The SAP® FI based purchase ledger supports accounting clerks in their daily tasks, and comprehensive key process data serves the long-term process optimisation. A web-based approval matrix is available to auditors and budget managers, who can access it via smartphone or tablet, where necessary.

Advantages of Accounts Payable in SAP®

  • Speed and efficiency

    It is standard requirement for financial accounting to complete month-end and year-end closings efficiently and as close to the end of the period as possible. However, it is difficult to ensure that compliance guidelines are maintained and concrete figures are available to improve cash flow planning in a paper-based process. Employees often verify order-related invoices manually despite previously completing successful order requests and order processes, even when the correct receiving transactions are present. Vendor invoices which are in the processing workflow can often be subject to long transport and wait times. It goes without saying that the invoice verification and approval processes demand time and effort, especially for paper-based processes. Thankfully, this can all become a thing of the past with the accounts payable process in SAP®.

  • Profitability and shared service

    The consequences can be missed payment deadlines and potentially the loss of discount options. Invoices are repeatedly lost and might not be found due to inadequate process transparency. This can lead to companies initiating the process for an invoice multiple times and it may even be paid twice. If the finance department works as a shared service centre for several companies, an electronic solution such as accounts payable in SAP® is crucial.

  • Mobile invoice approvals accelerate approval processes

    Protracted invoice approval processes are a common problem. The integrated processor location in the payment program in SAP® takes issued approvals into account, thus reducing the workload for the approvers. Mobile work is supported. Approvals can be made conveniently on the desktop, smartphone, or tablet – with simple to use interfaces in SAP® Fiori®/HTML5. The incoming invoice process in SAP® is completely user-friendly.

  • Format variety

    The payment process begins with the standard processing of vendor invoices from a variety of channels: analogue paper invoices are scanned and digital invoices are automatically transmitted to the next processing step.  For example, PDF invoices which arrive by email or are already in the EDI format.

  • Revision-proof archiving

    All invoice documents are archived revision-proof across all processing steps and are always available at the click of a button – legally secure but still easy for the end user.

  • Escalation management

    The accounts payable process in SAP® handles automated reminders of discount periods, payments due, etc.  This means you will never miss another discount period and can avoid default costs.

  • Analysis & reporting

    Extensive statistics provide relevant KPIs, such as cycle times, automatic processing rates, or discount potential. As a result, the entire accounts payable process is highlighted and offers the basis for long-term optimisation – a functionality for reporting and controlling which is not to be underestimated.

Discover the potentials of the SAP® accounts payable solution

EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions is a coordinated total package for processing analogue and digital incoming vendor invoices in SAP®. It can be quickly and easily implemented thanks to its high degree of standardisation. Companies which already have a scan solution or an external service provider can also benefit from the short implementation time because the EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions can also be connected to other scan, extraction, and archive solutions.  Why not see for yourself what other advantages the accounts payable process in SAP® has.

Shorten cycle times

Due to automated workflows, you will experience drastic reductions in the cycle times of vendor invoice processing in SAP®. If time is money, then you can expect savings of up to 50% here.

Easy approvals

The solution enters all incoming invoices in a central SAP®-based purchase ledger. From there, the processing status of all invoices can be tracked.  It is also possible to search for individual documents (for example, at the request of suppliers). EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions provides active escalation management (reminders of discount periods).

Flexible & expandable

Use the EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions with your own archive or as Software as a Service (SaaS) from EASY in the Cloud; it can be expanded with adjacent processes based on the EASY for SAP Solutions Suite.

The 7 steps of processing supplier invoices in SAP®

SAP Eingangsrechnung erfassen

Invoice receipt – record

From paper invoices, invoices attached to email as PDF through to electronic invoices in standardised formats such as EDI. The EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions system excels at processing incoming supplier invoices.

1

Extract

EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions automatically determines all the necessary invoice content: invoice header with creditor, total amount, invoice date, and all individual invoice items.

2

SAP Eingangsrechnung extrahieren
SAP Eingangsrechnung validieren

Validate in SAP® or in EASY

In the next step, the read data is checked for validity.  For example, verifying the validity of a purchase order number. Validation can be performed directly in the scan client – EASY delivers an appropriate component with EASY Capture Plus for this. Alternatively, it can also take place directly within the SAP® GUI.

3

Store & archive

The original documents – scanned paper documents or email attachments are then stored revision-proof in an archive connected via SAP® ArchiveLink. Both early archiving with workflow and late archiving are supported. All historical data about the document, such as document changes, workflow approvals, etc. are also stored – accounts payable processing in SAP® has it all.

4

SAP Eingangsrechnung speichern & archivieren

Pre-post

The invoice data is then recorded in SAP® and is available in the purchase ledger.

5

Verify & approve

This is followed by the start of one SAP® workflow per invoice. Every incoming invoice in SAP® goes through an extensive invoice verification and rule set which has been tried and tested in many customer projects and, of course, can be adapted to individual customer needs. The rule set checks invoices, for example, for purchase order reference, the amount and price deviations, booked or missing goods receipt, payments already made as well as basic information such as the name of the supplier. After processing all the rules and the exception handling, the system forwards the invoices to the relevant approver for approval by SAP® workflow according to the sign-off guidelines of your company. Approvals can be made conveniently on your desktop, smartphone, or tablet – with user-friendly interfaces in SAP® Fiori®/HTML5. The invoice documents are only the click of a button away in every processing and approval step – the system even visualises EDI invoices in a user-friendly way.

6

verify & approve SAP invoice
SAP Eingangsrechnung buchen

Post

Most invoices go through the above steps automatically, without further intervention being necessary. All others are posted following the completion of invoice verification and approval.

7

Questions about the accounts payable process in SAP®? We have the answers.

Is the solution integrated into SAP®?

The solution was designed and developed as an SAP® add-on. The interfaces provided by SAP® (BAPI = Business Application Processing Interface) are used for the processing of documents, as well as many other things.

How and where are the original documents stored?

The original documents (scanned paper documents or email attachments) are stored revision-proof in the archive connected via SAP® ArchiveLink. All the document’s historic data (document changes, workflow approval) are also stored.

What archiving does EASY support (early, late, bar code)?

Both early archiving with workflow and late archiving are supported.

Does EASY offer SAP® Fiori®/SAP® UI5 apps?

SAP® Fiori®/HTML5 apps are included as standard. These offer a variety of tiles which can be integrated into the SAP® Fiori® Launchpad (All my approval tasks, Only my order-related approval tasks, Only my non-order-related approval tasks) – the number of open work items can be seen directly in the tile. The Fiori® apps are included in the StarterKit in accordance with the license agreement; the services for setup are billed according to time and effort.

Does EASY support mobile scenarios?

Mobile scenarios are supported by using SAP® Fiori®/SAP® UI5. For example, managers can access documents via their mobile device and process approval workflows and approve invoices.

Does EASY support mobile scenarios?

Mobile scenarios are supported through the use of SAP® Fiori®/SAP® UI5. For example, managers are able to access documents via their mobile device and process approval workflows and approve invoices.

What are the required prerequisites for using the SAP® Fiori® apps?

SAP NetWeaver Gateway configuration is required. EASY will be happy to help you with the configuration.

What types of documents can be processed?

All bookkeeping documents such as invoices, credit memos and payments can be processed.

What input channels are supported?

Paper documents, electronic documents, for example email attachments in PDF format, read out of an email inbox, EDI invoices/processing of IDocs.

Where does the validation of the scanned documents occur?

The correction of the results of the automatic invoice reading is called validation. This validation can be performed directly in the scan client – EASY delivers an appropriate component with EASY Capture Plus for this.  Alternatively, this can also take place directly within the SAP® GUI.

Which processes does EASY support in the standard product?

  • Creation of an electronic incoming document and assignment of the document to an accounting clerk
  • Automatic posting scenarios
  • Invoice cancellation with subsequent process restart (posting, approval, etc.)
  • Creation of rejection letter with automatic sending via SAP® connect
  • Support of vendor master maintenance from the process
  • Automatic workflow start/sending of approval workflows
  • Multi-stage approval workflows for FI and MM documents
  • Handling of logistic reasons for blocking and payment blocks

Which SAP® transactions are supported/how is the document posted?

  • The SAP® BAPI (Business Application Programming Interface) technology is used in the background for posting the documents.
  • A jump to the following transactions is possible from the document:
    • MIRO (MM postings)
    • FB60 (FI posting)
    • FB01 (FI posting)
    • F-47 (down payment request)

Does EASY use the SAP® Business workflow for the process?

Yes, EASY Process2Design for SAP Solutions is based on SAP® Business workflow technology.

How are the workflows defined and set up?

The workflows are graphically defined and set up with the Process Designer – the Process Designer is a component of EASY Process2Design for SAP Solutions.

Is there a 4-eyes principle?

Yes, for multi-stage approval workflows different end users must process the respective workflow steps. These are determined according to their approval authorisations (amount/cost centre responsibility) and “contacted” via a work item.

Is there an automatic determination of the approvers in the approval workflow and how?

Different determinations for the recipient identification can be defined in the standard.  For example, from the purchasing documents (order creator, requester, purchasing group, company code) or from the SAP® Org. Management (when used). For FI documents, allocation can be based on account assignment elements or supplier names.

Is there a reminder or escalation option for the workflow function?

Yes, both workflow reminder and escalation options are available. The reminder is sent to the current workflow processor; an alternate end user can be defined for the escalation.

Do the users require an additional SAP® user?

All persons involved in the process require a corresponding SAP® user account and thus an SAP® user license.

Does EASY require its own authorisation concept?

No, since the solution is fully integrated into the standard SAP®, EASY for SAP Solutions uses the SAP® authorisation concept. The authorisation objects which are required for the processing of electronic bookkeeping documents can be integrated in their own or already existing user roles.

Who can process the documents?

Depending on the processing scenario, documents are initially assigned to an accounting clerk in bookkeeping or a workflow processor. The documents are then processed according to the assigned role.

How can users search for invoices?

Document search is provided via its own transaction. A list is created according to the search criteria used (ledger) from which it is also possible to jump to the processing with the appropriate authorisation. Search criteria can be added.

Which reports are standard in EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions?

Reports on the invoice statistics and from the ledger are included in the delivery. These are:

  • Age structure of the workflows
  • Input statistics (mail/scan/EDI)
  • Discount loss
  • Document reception per supplier
  • Evaluation of wait/processing times per process path (Number of days per approval/posting step)

Additional reports can be implemented using the optional “statistics cockpit”.

Can results be depicted graphically?

Yes, a statistics cockpit is optionally available and can display evaluations graphically.

How are document changes logged?

  • Changed field contents are stored for every document via SAP® change documents and can be clearly displayed as needed.
  • Workflow logging occurs for every action performed.
  • The workflow logs are archived at the end of the workflow.

What version of SAP® does the customer need?

The prerequisite for installation is SAP® ECC6.0 with EHP6.

Is additional hardware required?

If incoming documents are not currently processed electronically, the EASY software solution component Capture Plus can be additionally installed. Additional hardware is required for that.

Scanner: all ISIS/TWAIN-based scanners are supported.

To be able to work effectively in Bookkeeping, monitors with a resolution of 1600 x 1200 are recommended.

How and where are the documents stored?

The documents are stored in the linked archive system via the SAP® ArchiveLink interface. It is recommended that you set up a distinct content repository in the archive.

Can customers use an existing archive?

Yes, every archive which is or can be linked via the SAP® ArchiveLink interface can be used.

How does the EASY solution get into the customer’s SAP® system?

EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions is provided in the form of SAP® transports and is to be imported through the customer’s SAP® basic division. Adjustments (that is, customising) are then performed by EASY consultants.

Does EASY support SAP® Transport?

Yes, both product transports as well as the customising and, if necessary, project-specific additional implementations are managed via SAP® Transport.

What is the advantage over a non-SAP® solution?

Because EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions is fully integrated into SAP®, no interfaces to additional systems are necessary. The vendor master data in SAP® can be accessed directly. Functions, technologies, and messages available in SAP are sometimes used. Administrators do not need to be trained in new software, because EASY for SAP Solutions is completely integrated in SAP®.

Is the solution from EASY revision-proof?

Yes, since all activities are logged by the SAP® system and/or the archive. To support revision safety, it is necessary to check if process instructions were created for processes outside of the SAP® system (for example, preparation of the scan process) – however this is independent of the solution used.

What languages does EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions support?

The standard product supports English and German. Additional languages can be provided individually in the customer project.

Can customers further develop the solution with their own resources, or must the services be purchased from EASY?

Customers are welcome to further develop EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions through adjustments to the customising or customer-specific additional developments – it is not necessary to purchase these services from EASY. EASY also offers special administrator training to facilitate the development of the corresponding expertise in house with the customer.

Is EASY for SAP Solutions certified by SAP®?

Yes. EASY Accounts Payable for SAP Solutions is based on EASY Process2Design for SAP Solutions and provides a preconfigured customising for the incoming invoice special process, which means that the solution is certified.

What does the solution documentation look like?

As part of the product standard for the installation, there is an Installation Guide and Release Notes; there is a Customising Guide for setting up the product.

In addition, EASY generally provides project-specific technical documentation which precisely describes the customising on the customer’s system. If requested, EASY will also compile custom training documents which can be used for training the key users and end users and which can be developed into an individual manual by the training participants.

Customer success stories

Amey

Amey first implemented SAP as its finance and resource management system, it invested in EASY Software’s SAP Packaged Services to capture and manage incoming Accounts Payable documents electronically.

Österreichische Bundesforste

In sales transactions or in the case of legal matters, it is an immense advantage if the papers are not distributed nationwide in the forestry operations, but are available centrally.

SSI Schäfer Shop

SSI Schäfer Shop GmbH, one of the leading mail order companies for office equipment in Europe, receives 800 invoices per day. The quantity is a challenge from an accounting point of view. Regardless of whether invoices arrive by mail or e-mail, they must be transferred directly to the SAP ERP system.

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