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Paper Invoices - No More!

Updated: Apr 3, 2023

Supplyve can save you thousands of dollars and endless hours on receiving paper invoices from suppliers - read more below 🡳

The Problem: Thousands of Dollars and Endless Hours Lost on Paper Invoices

With the advent of Amazon Go and Smart Shopping Carts, the way in which customers interact with grocery shopping has become drastically more technologically advanced. However, the “back office” where independent grocery and convenience stores operate behind the scenes is still antiquated and low tech. Often the best case scenario is that the store operators might utilize ERP systems from the 1990s to handle their inventory and ordering process, and at worst the operators are still working off of Microsoft Excel or even pen and paper.

In addition to the very slow and expensive ordering process, one big disadvantage of using antiquated or manual methods of back office operation is dealing with paper invoices from suppliers, which detail what was purchased and when accounts payable are due. 63% of businesses receive more than 75% of their invoices in paper.

Manually processed paper invoices end up costing retailers untold amounts of time and money. The time spend of the process can be broken down into multiple parts: checking off what inventory has been received, discussing with the supplier what is not properly recorded in the invoice, receiving an updated invoice, uploading the invoice information into whatever system used for inventory, and then paying the supplier, which is a complicated paper process in its own right.

In fact, according to the Institute of Finance and Management and Concur, a SAP subsidiary, “Paper-based and semi-automated invoice processing and disbursements create hidden costs that chip away at profit margins: • Manual processes • Processing errors • Poor cash flow visibility • Poor spend management • Too many exceptions • Onerous regulatory compliance • Risk of fraud • Fragmented systems”

Furthermore, the report explains that as a result of the above hidden costs, the actual average cost of processing a paper invoice can range from $12.90 to $21 per invoice depending on if there is or isn’t a purchase order attached. That means if a store averages around 100 invoices per month (this can fluctuate greatly depending on the store size) they are paying $1290 to $2100 per month. Over the course of the year this is $15,480 to an astonishing $25,200 spent just on paper invoices.

The Solution: Supplyve Digitizes Paper Invoices

To manually digitize invoices for upload to an ERP or for any other purpose, we at Supplyve found it takes about 50 seconds per product. Per invoice the average amount of products is 28, meaning a total of 23.3 minutes to process. Over the course of the month that is roughly 39 hours just spent on uploading invoices. As an aside, the average grocery bookkeeper is paid $18 per hour, which means as a store owner you are currently paying on average $702 per month for just invoice uploading work, and depending on the size of your store that can balloon.

Using the Supplyve mobile app to photograph and scan paper invoices (PDF coming soon!), it is 1 minute per invoice, which is 23X or 2200% faster. With Supplyve, operators only need to spend a bit more than an hour and a half roughly per month on invoice scanning.

In addition to the obvious time and money saved through cutting out the manual processes, below are 5 more ways that Supplyve makes automating worth it:

  1. Our system notifies users automatically if suppliers have changed the prices of goods ordered. This can mean a massive amount of money saved - for example if a user orders 100 individual SKUs with 10 of each being delivered, and the prices change by only a dollar each, that is $1000 lost on one order!

  2. Presents a checkoff list to make it way faster and easier to resolve delivery issues. Let’s say that five of the just ordered cartons of eggs are broken, using Supplyve operators can update their checkoff list and send it back to the supplier in seconds and get what they are owed from suppliers before customer distractions get in the way.

  3. Track margins and price better than ever - using Supplyve to collect supplier prices you are able to see what products are earning you money and which ones are not. Plus more often than not operators can export new prices from Supplyve to their POS.

  4. Automation reduces risk and ensures that a tired bookkeeper won’t make an error on the important accounts payable or otherwise.

  5. Supplyve also makes the payment process easier and more organized - users can mark each invoice paid or unpaid. Plus, coming soon, Supplyve will notify users if they still need to pay their invoice! This can also save you thousands of dollars thanks to supplier discounts such as 2/10 net 30 - calculate how much you can save per invoice with the Supplyve 2/10 net 30 calculator.

To recap, today store owners are annually spending between $15,480 to $25,200 on paper invoices, on average $8424 on your bookkeeper, and untold thousands of dollars on changing supplier prices.

With Supplyve you can pay a monthly fee ranging just from $79 to $449 depending on store size and plan. In addition to receiving the time and money saving ordering and inventory management, purchasing Supplyve will allow you to digitize invoices - thus cut down costs and man hours (2200% faster) dramatically, and raise profits.

Sign up for a free demo to see it in action.

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