Read

Top 7 Accounts Payable Automation Software

Mohammed Ridwan

December 4, 2023

5

An invoice has landed in your inbox. As soon as it arrived, a team member cleared the payment. Later, when another team member came across it, they made the payment again. This is a common scenario of duplicate payments that results in cash leakage. Invoices are not consolidated. There is no proper approval workflow, and stakeholders lack visibility. 

Overall, managing accounts payable (AP) becomes a nightmare. 

An automation tool solves these bottlenecks and provides a centralized platform for invoice management and accounts payable. An accounts payable automation software automates invoice capture and retrieval to consolidate all the information on a unified platform. You get real-time visibility and control over your payables. 

As a result, you establish better vendor relationships and supply chain management without impacting cash flows.

This post will cover 7 AP automation software to help you choose the right automation partner.  

{{less-time-managing="/components"}}

Top 7 accounts payable automation software 

Here are the top 7 AP automation software. You can pick one of these to automate your accounts payable based on your company size and needs.

1. Pluto

account payable automation software by pluto

Pluto is an accounts payable software that transforms your AP processes by simplifying bill processing. From enabling GRN matching to setting fully customizable multi-layer approval workflows, it is the best AP automation software to manage your vendor payments. 

Key Features:

  • Facilitates three-way GRN matching with purchase orders and item-based matching
  • Offers a flexible approval engine capable of managing intricate hierarchies without requiring technical expertise
  • Enables multi-layer invoice approvals with policies to align with your company's structure
  • Ability to upload invoices easily via WhatsApp images and emails to speed up the receipt capture process
  • Facilitates optical character recognition (OCR) technology to retrieve invoice information, including tax and general ledger (GL) codes
  • Offers a centralized dashboard to gather bills in one place and track the status to avoid double payments
  • Consolidates approved invoices in a single window to highlight pending bills and avoid delays
  • Raises alerts for upcoming payments, enables scheduling payments in advance and automates invoices 
  • Allows you to seamlessly carry out bulk local and international wire transfers for easy payment clearing through their treasury partners.
  • Enables you to split payments for different tax and GL codes, departments, etc. 
  • Provides vendor-specific corporate cards to control budgets and detect irrelevant expenses
  • Supports ERP integration to synchronize your vendors, purchase orders, and bills
  • Integrates with accounting software such as Oracle, NetSuite, Zoho, Quickbooks, Wafeq, Xero, etc.
  • Provides a complete audit trail of the process to ensure visibility at each step
  • Shows real-time analytics to facilitate deep insights for supporting budget control

Pricing: 

Free to get started 

Pros:

  • Free to get started!
  • Enables branch and subsidiary-level spend tracking (not offered by other platforms)
  • Offers up to 2% cashback on all non-AED transactions 
  • Independent PCI DSS Level 1 certification for advanced security
  • SSO/SAML Capabilities for Enterprises
  • Better Forex rates than most local banks 

Cons:

  • Integrates with all other major ERPs except Tally
  • Slightly longer on-boarding due to corporate card offering

{{less-time-managing="/components"}}

2. Tipalti

AP automation software by tipalti

Tipalti is an automation tool that supports end-to-end AP processes. It streamlines accounts payables and facilitates global payments in local currencies for various recipients, from suppliers to freelancers. The cloud-based platform helps finance teams manage payments without losing visibility and control. 

Key Features:

  • Supports supplier onboarding and vetting to ensure supplier reliability and trustworthiness
  • Integrates with ERP and accounting systems to help with reconciliation reporting
  • Uses OCR to scan, capture, match, and process invoice data to reduce manual errors
  • Provides built-in approval workflows and payment scheduling 
  • Offers invoice processing, including two-way and three-way purchase order matching and approval to avoid overpayments
  • Assists AP processes for subsidiaries and entities

Pricing: 

Starts at $129 per month per user for the platform fee and charges for additional features separately

Pros:

  • Can manage supplier bank account details in a secure environment

Cons:

  • Cannot use it for prepayment invoices on inventory purchases with the ERP system
  • High foreign currency exchange fees
  • Tax forms can be difficult to fill out and very difficult if you do not speak English

3. Airbase

AP automation platform by Airbase

Airbase manages global AP processes. It focuses on ensuring compliance and syncing with your accounting tool to streamline payment. It is an automation solution for small to midsize businesses (SMBs) and large enterprises with 100-5,000 employees.

Key Features: 

  • Offers OCR to populate details, including GL category, date, amount, and purpose
  • Supports onboarding with a self-service vendor portal and custom questionnaires
  • Has a centralized dashboard with all key information about the invoice to avoid friction 
  • Accepts invoices from email or vendor portal across all subsidiaries
  • Offers automated approval workflows based on multiple parameters, such as vendor, amount, GL category, etc.
  • Enables three-way invoice matching to ensure compliance and reduce wasted spend
  • Real-time audit trail with receipts, notes, and documentation for transparency

Pricing: 

Request a custom quote

Pros:

  • Intuitive and easy to use; no training or previous knowledge required

Cons:

  • The mobile app is slow and takes time to load pages 
  • SSO-based login is not smooth
  • Not suitable for complex branch-level approvals and expenses

4. Ramp

Ramp's AP automation solution

Ramp is an accounts payable solution for managing payments and business expenses. It automates bill entries, approvals, and payments while offering complete visibility and control. By tracking each AP step from data recording to approvals, it simplifies payment processing and takes the burden off teams. 

Key Features:

  • Uses artificial intelligence (AI) to extract key details from invoices to offer accuracy and eliminate data-entry errors
  • Identifies duplicate invoices and helps with two-way matching to purchase orders
  • Offers custom approval workflows to minimize errors and ensure timely payments 
  • Provides a unified dashboard with visibility into the status of invoices
  • Consolidates multiple payment options, such as check, card, same-day ACH, or international wire
  • Integrates with accounting solutions, such as QuickBooks, Xero, Oracle NetSuite, Sage, etc. for auto-sync bill pay transactions
  • Supports international payment processing in multiple currencies 
  • Tracks vendor data and transactions for easy reporting and data-driven decisions

Pricing: 

Three pricing packages—free or basic features, $15 per user per month for Ramp Plus, and custom quote for enterprises with features like enterprise ERP integration, custom implementation, and local card issuance

Pros:

  • Works with multiple subsidiaries
  • Offers cash back on credit card purchases made using VISA cards

Cons:

  • Can’t unmatch an incorrectly matched invoice (invoice to credit card)
  • Approval routing can only be set on the vendor level, not the department level
  • Limitations in syncing repayments

5. Bill

Accounts payable automation tool by Bill

Bill is an accounts payable solution for SMBs to control payables, receivables, expenses, and all corporate expenses. It allows businesses to streamline scattered AP processes into a single platform and gain more control over their finances. 

Key Features:

  • Enables custom approval workflows for minimal hassle
  • Automates purchase order workflows with the option for automated two-way and three-way matching
  • Automates receipt matching, categorization, and expense reporting, decreasing administrative tasks
  • Syncs with all major accounting systems like QuickBooks, Sage, Intacct, and NetSuite
  • OCR auto-populates invoices for data entry
  • Provides bulk payments of approved invoices with payment choices, such as ACH, credit cards, checks, and international wire transfers
  • Offers audit trail of any changes or actions related to the invoice on a single page

Pricing: 

Provides a free trial and essentials pack starting at $45 for six standard user roles. Its team and corporate pack are for $55 and $79, respectively. Enterprises need to request a custom quote.

Pros:

  • One-click swift payments
  • Minimum training required
  • Easy-to-use mobile app

Cons:

  • Customer support is difficult to initiate, slow, and unresponsive
  • Frequent changes in the interface create confusion for users

6. Procurify

Procurify's AP automation software

Procurify streamlines AP reconciliation, offering a straightforward solution for financial operations. From catalog management to custom user controls, it helps to track the procurement process in real time. Its no-code configuration allows for a prompt deployment in under six weeks, making it a suitable choice for mid-market to enterprise organizations.

Key Features:

  • Creates, tracks, and maintains an audit trail of all procurement transactions for transparency and compliance
  • Ensures that requested items are approved against budgets before procurement
  • Integrates with trusted vendors through punchout catalogs to streamline the ordering process
  • Syncs bills and completes bill payments directly with platforms like QuickBooks Online, NetSuite, and other major accounting systems
  • Supports OCR  technology to extract data from invoices

Pricing: 

Starts at $2000/month with a custom pricing tier

Pros:

  • Ability to upload different invoices in the same PO and group invoices

Cons:

  • Doesn’t offer payment services, so you need to carry out payments on a different platform
  • Physical inventory has to be tracked outside Procurify

7. ZipHq

Accounts payable automation by ZipHQ

Ziphq is an end-to-end procure to pay software designed to streamline the entire procurement process, from purchase order to payment. It caters to businesses of all sizes — startups, mid-size companies, and enterprises with no-code configuration and deployment in under six weeks.

Key Features:

  • Offers vendor cards to automate recurring and one-time payments
  • Centralizes purchasing workflows, providing real-time visibility into the AP process
  • Facilitates automatic purchase order matching, ensuring invoice accuracy and timely payments
  • Provides automated, no-code workflows, referencing all stakeholders in the approval chain
  • Allows employees to comment on invoices and tag stakeholders, ensuring everyone has the context and visibility needed
  • Automates renewal planning with workflows initiated well ahead of deadlines, enabling stakeholders to make informed decisions
  • Supports vendor payments in 140+ countries and 40+ currencies
  • Integrates with ERP, ensuring quick and easy reconciliation, even for complex, multi-subsidiary operations

Pricing: 

Request a demo quote

Pros:

  • Provides various customization options to configure internal processes

Cons:

  • Localized to the USA market
  • Takes over five days to settle vendor payments 
  • Can’t bulk upload documents

How to choose the right accounts payable automation software?

User-friendliness

Select software that is adaptable and user-friendly, with intuitive trigger-based workflows and a clean interface, ensuring ease of use without excessive reliance on support for basic tasks.

Versatile payment capabilities

Choose a solution that supports a broad spectrum of payment methods, including the ability to issue vendor-specific cards for secure and speedy payments, a feature not commonly found in many platforms.

Accurate Invoice Processing

Opt for software with OCR technology to enhance invoice processing speed and accuracy, capable of handling invoices from various sources and integrating them into a centralized database for reduced manual entry.

Efficient Approval Workflows

The software should include a straightforward, no-code workflow builder that can handle complex hierarchies, essential for large organizations with intricate approval processes.

Seamless System Integration

Ensure the software integrates well with existing accounting systems to automate data entry and maintain synchronized records, which is crucial for effective financial management.

Advanced Reporting Features

Reporting functionality that offers insights into spending patterns and department-specific expenditures is vital. The software should provide a robust reporting dashboard with options for deeper analytics.

Choosing the right accounts payable automation software 

Implementing accounts payable software will support your procurement process only when you carefully pick an option that provides flexibility, visibility, and security without losing on functionality. 

Imagine software that makes it easy to clear payments but doesn’t settle payments for days on the vendor’s end. Contrarily, consider an option your legal or IT team is skeptical of implementing. 

That is why, at Pluto, we focus on simplifying processes and cutting all the chaos without risking security, flexibility, or functionality. We simplify accounts payable by syncing with your payment gateways for faster payments at better forex rates than banks. You get a PCI DSS Level 1 certified solution that provides you with bank-grade security. 

So, book a demo and learn more about how you can optimize your entire procurement process.

Find out how much your business can save with Pluto

Discover your savings with Pluto's Cost Saving Calculator and take control of your expenses. Unlock cost-efficiency now!

Calculate Now

Learn how Pluto is helping Keyper        to eliminate petty cash spending and optimize spend management

Read More

At Pluto Card, our mission is to assist businesses of all scales make well-informed choices. To uphold our standards, we follow editorial guidelines to guarantee that our content consistently aligns with our high-quality benchmarks.

You may also be interested

5
All
Procurement
November 23, 2023

Mohammed Ridwan

Top 9 Procure-to-Pay Software for Enterprises

You want a procure-to-pay (P2P) software that automates your procurement process and addresses issues like lack of visibility, double payments, and delayed approvals. However, since such a tool has multiple users at different hierarchies and a complex workflow, you often end up with a more complex process if you don’t choose the right software. 

With ad-hoc processes, many issues pop-up: employees wait weeks for approvals, procurement teams have no real-time visibility over purchase requests and don’t know how to prioritize, finance teams get minimal control over expenses, and the entire process is chaotic. Hence, choosing the right procure-to-pay solution requires a focus on ease of use and flexibility. 

In this post, we will share the best procure-to-pay software for businesses in the UAE. We will discuss how P2P software helps with procurement management and which tools are worth considering. 

What is Procure-to-Pay Software?

Procure-to-pay software is a tool to automate the complete procurement process, which combines accounts payable (AP) software and procurement software.

Instead of having your procurement processes and data scattered across emails, Jira, different task management tools, and custom ERPs, you bring it onto a single platform. 

Procure to Pay software

By moving from your legacy tools to an automated P2P software, you can:

  • automate approval workflows, making the purchase request (PR) process easier and faster. Flexible approval workflows enable all stakeholders to approve requests with a trigger-based flow. 
  • integrate with ERPs to maintain a preferred vendor list and manage order items. While most P2P software supports record-keeping only, some allow the conversion of PRs to purchase orders (PO) automatically after approval.
  • match the goods received note (GRN) to enable two-way or three-way matching and ensure proper inventory and timely vendor payments. 
  • process payments with multiple payment options to avoid delays and foster vendor relationships. It also helps avoid double payments, underpayment, or overpayment. 
  • reconcile data faster via integrations with accounting software, enabling more visibility and control. Accounting teams get the right documents, and finance teams get visibility over expenses.

Since legacy ERPs aren’t enough to manage your entire procurement process, adding P2P software makes purchasing and payments easier. 

Top 9 Procure-to-Pay Software

Here is a procure-to-pay software list for companies in the UAE: 

1. Pluto

Procure-to-Pay software by Pluto

Pluto is an all-in-one procure-to-pay solution to transform your procurement and AP processes. It sits on top of your ERP as a layer to manage the multiple stages of the procurement process. From automating PRs to setting multi-layer approval workflows and managing vendors, it is the ultimate solution to transform a chaotic procurement process into a faster and more efficient one. 

Key Features:

  • Features fully customizable workflows for raising PR and POs, requiring no technical expertise
  • Offers a flexible approval engine capable of managing intricate hierarchies
  • Enables multi-layer invoice approvals with policies to align with your company's structure
  • Ability to upload invoices easily via WhatsApp images, eliminating the need to search for invoice details. Also facilitates invoice capture via emails directly to speed up the receipt capture process
  • A centralized dashboard to gather bills in one place and track the status to avoid double payments
  • Vendor-specific corporate cards to control budgets and detect irrelevant expenses
  • Supports local and international wire transfers to make payments 
  • OCR technology minimizes manual data entry by creating and populating bills from invoices
  • Supports ERP integration to synchronize your vendors, POs, and bills and integrates with accounting software, such as Oracle, NetSuite, Zoho, Quickbooks, Wafeq, Xero, etc.
  • Integrates with payment gateways and accounting software for seamless payments and reconciliation (a feature not available in other solutions)
  • Raises alerts for upcoming payments and enables scheduling payments in advance and automate invoices 
  • Provides a complete audit trail of the process to ensure visibility at each step
  • Shows real-time analytics to facilitate deep insights for supporting budget control

Pricing: 

Request the sales team for a custom quote

Pros:

  • More financial control with vendor-specific corporate cards 
  • Better Forex rates than most local banks 
  • Multiple integration options including Netsuite, Dynamics and more

Cons:

  • Slightly longer on-boarding due to unlimited corporate purchasing card offering 
  • Directly integrates with all other major ERPs except Tally

2. Order.co

Procure to pay solution by Order

Order.co is a procure-to-pay platform that provides you access to over 15,000+ vendors in addition to your preferred vendors. It acts as an online marketplace like Amazon or eBay to help you procure items for your business. You add items to the cart, and it enables a rule-based approval system for POs with complete control and visibility. 

Key Features:

  • Provides a custom, pre-approved Order.co catalog, including your current vendors and a vast network of 15,000+ vendors
  • Supports purchases from multiple vendors regardless of their ordering methods (API, website, email)
  • Sources the best prices for your needs to automatically generate POs and set up recurring orders to save time and reduce manual errors
  • Offers real-time budgeting and reporting insights by the user, location, cost center, or vendor
  • Simplifies payment processing by consolidating all orders from multiple vendors into one monthly invoice

Pricing:

Dependent upon locations and usage; contact hello@order.co for pricing information

Pros:

  • Customizable product lists for ordering 
  • Easy-to-create customizable workflows
  • Ability to categorize purchases and run reports

Cons:

  • Set up is confusing and requires customer support help
  • Can not order from multiple vendors at the same time

3. Yooz

Procure to pay platform by Yooz

Yooz optimizes the procurement process by focusing on invoice management.  It is suitable for mid-size companies of all sectors wanting to automate procurement with a cloud-based procure-to-pay solution. It uses artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies to enhance security and control in their account payable automation software.

Key Features:

  • Enables online, real-time management of supplier relationships, improving communication and collaboration
  • Provides mobile access for invoice approval and communication
  • Maintains regulation-compliant traceability, ensuring adherence to relevant laws and standards
  • Automates real-time general ledger (GL) coding and PO matching
  • Captures all types of documents through various channels, such as email, drag and drop, mobile, scan, and secure file transfer protocol (SFTP)
  • Integrates with accounting software and ERPs
  • Allows users to approve and pay invoices in batches, offering multiple payment options, such as virtual credit card, ACH, e-check, and paper check
  • Offers a range of services, including consulting, configuration, training, and user support

Pricing: 

Free trial for up to 15 days followed by a "pay-as-you-use" model. Also offers “gold edition” subscription pricing (based on the volume of documents) for an unlimited number of users and 4 hours of complimentary service

Pros:

  • Integrates with Sage Intacct
  • Ability to tag people in the comments and email them directly from the invoice
  • Numerous criteria available for setting up the approval workflows

Cons: 

  • Doesn’t offer payment services in the UAE, so you need to carry out payments on a different platform
  • Doesn't have integrations with major vendors as a form of punchout
  • Time-consuming to download and export files
  • Hard for vendors to send the invoices through Yooz

4. Kissflow

Procure to pay solution by Kissflow

Kissflow simplifies and enhances procurement processes while ensuring transparency and compliance. It helps users automate the entire process without requiring technical expertise or coding experience. It comes with 50+ ready-to-use applications, enabling unlimited automation applications.  

Key Features:

  • Offers fluid forms to enable easy capturing, approval, and tracking of PRs
  • Allows users to register and maintain vendors with access to multilingual catalogs
  • Integration with accounting systems, ERPs, and finance systems like Quickbooks, SAP, and Microsoft Dynamics 
  • Accelerates the invoice approval process with timely alerts and automated checks. Connect invoices to contracts, POs, and service entry sheets in a single dashboard
  • Customizable reports to visualize data using charts, filters, and heatmaps
  • Ability to define and manage budget restrictions with dynamic rules throughout the entire procure-to-pay lifecycle
  • Customized approval workflows to ensure transparency with rule-based approval processes
  • Smart alerts that provide real-time updates on the status of POs and invoices to keep stakeholders informed 

Pricing: 

Starts at $2499/month (billed annually). Pricing varies based on transaction volume and number of users

Pros: 

  • Intuitive interface with a relatively short learning curve

Cons:

  • Does not support payment flows in the UAE
  • Cost of its license is high (particularly for SMBs)
  • Can not handle intricate processes that require a high degree of customization or involve multiple conditional branches
  • Customization options are limited, including specific integrations, advanced business rules, or more sophisticated automation capabilities

5. Coupa

Procure-to-pay software by coupa

Coupa is a cloud-based automation platform to manage procurement processes. It facilitates supply chain optimization by providing visibility and control. It brings consumer shopping ease to the procurement process. With a focus on user adoption, it provides an intuitive shopping experience for employees, making it easier to adhere to pre-approved spending guidelines.

Key Features:

  • Simplifies procurement by allowing organizations to track pre-approved spending and get real-time visibility into POs and order lifecycle
  • Maximizes pre-approved spend to offer complete visibility over the purchase-to-pay processes
  • Promotes user adoption at all levels with an easy-to-use interface, creating value for both employees and vendors
  • Provides a centralized platform within Coupa Procure, allowing easy comparison of items across multiple vendors
  • Offers real-time budget management with budget meters, allowing organizations to assess budget sufficiency before committing to spending
  • Employs AI and machine learning to detect errors and fraud across business spend
  • Enables quick notifications of disruptions and allows vendors to confirm availability, minimizing unplanned downtime
  • Provides real-time visibility into inventory availability, helping organizations reduce redundant and wasteful spending

Pricing: 

Request the sales team for a custom quote

Pros:

  • Several categories and filters in the analytics section to streamline data
  • Chat option enables approver and claimant to discuss issues with receipts
  • Enables setting up of customized approval chains and including additional new approvers  

Cons:

  • Lots of unnecessary notifications, making it difficult to select the ones that need action or comment
  • Low receipt searchability, making retrieval time-consuming
  • Inconsistent syncing of remit-to address from NetSuite
  • Complex to implement and not intuitive, forcing admins to spend more time resolving employees' queries
  • Slow customer service 

6. Esker

Procure to pay platform by Esker

Esker is a cloud-based automation procurement software. It helps you optimize procurement processes and collaborate strategically with your vendors. With the ability to integrate across various company departments, it simplifies user adoption while facilitating visibility and control.

Key Features:

  • Facilitates approval mechanism and GRN matching for each PR and invoice 
  • Offers real-time analytics, enabling you to maintain tighter budget controls
  • Gives access to products from preferred vendors, aligning purchases with company procurement policies
  • Provides a self-service portal, facilitating supplier onboarding, catalog management, and invoice status access
  • Customizable dashboards to manage daily tasks, monitor productivity, and identify issues and opportunities as they arise
  • Enables you to customize the interface with your company's corporate identity, enhancing the supplier's ability to identify and engage with your organization seamlessly

Pricing: 

Contact sales for pricing

Pros:

  • Contains filtered views to allow for focused priorities 
  • Auto-sends payment reminders

Cons:

  • Gets expensive with each customization implemented
  • Doesn’t allow unused/old customer accounts to be deleted
  • Integration with accounting software isn't seamless 
  • Approval workflow requires a manual trigger to start

7. PayEm

Procure to pay software by PayEm

PayEm offers a procure-to-pay solution, covering everything in one place to replace your traditional procurement process. With a core focus on processing PR, it simplifies the creation of POs with custom forms and approval workflows. It facilitates collaboration between procurement and finance teams to enhance visibility and control. 

Key Features:

  • Offers custom request forms equipped with conditional logic to ensure a user-friendly experience
  • Provides fully customizable automated approval workflows based on factors like amounts, subsidiaries, and stakeholders
  • Integrates with communication platforms like Slack and email, allowing request tracking and approvals
  • Consolidates all the requests and approvals, simplifying discussions, document sharing, and creating an audit log
  • Enables real-time updates and clear overviews of request statuses, minimizing the need for follow-up inquiries
  • Offers OCR technology for invoice processing
  • Syncs with your ERP and enables exporting reconciled transactions and uploading them to your ERP 
  • Automates vendor management with payment scheduling, funds transferring, and limits setting for each vendor

Pricing: 

Request a custom quote

Pros:

  • Multiple virtual credit cards for different vendors
  • Supports global transactions 

Cons:

  • Some vendors don't accept PayEm cards
  • High transaction clearing time 
  • Limits the user to either a virtual or physical card at one time 

8. Pipefy

Pipefy Procure to pay platform

Pipefy is an automation procure-to-pay tool to manage end-to-end procurement processes, from PR to paying vendors, to create a frictionless experience. It aims to break silos between teams to simplify purchase and AP. 

Key Features:

  • Allows you to create and customize workflows, from purchase requisition to supplier management
  • Provides secure portals where records and documents can be organized, ensuring that all information is easily accessible, especially during audits
  • Ensures compliance with custom forms that include required fields to accelerate POs
  • Enables access to real-time insights to help you forecast ideal quantities and vendors for requisitions
  • Evaluates your processes, delivering reliable data to enable strategic and data-driven decisions
  • Integrates with your existing ERPs and accounting systems, such as NetSuite, Oracle E-business Suite, QuickBooks, Sage Intacct, etc.  
  • Enables deadline alerts, approval flows, and information exchange to prevent late fees and cashing in on early payment discounts
  • Offers a customizable dashboard to streamline vendor registration, updates, onboarding, and contract management

Pricing:

Offers three packages starting with a free option for smaller teams, and a subsequent model that costs $20 per month per user and $34 per month per user. Also, offers an enterprise plan with custom pricing

Pros: 

  • Offers templates for organizing processes

Cons:

  • Complex sign-up process
  • Workflows aren’t flexible with difficulty with respect to adding new users and making changes 
  • Difficult to import data and search in the database for information

9. Procurify

Procure to pay software solution by Procurify

Procurify speeds up the procurement process, enhances internal communication, and reduces financial risks. It is an easy-to-implement tool that saves time for finance and operations teams. From catalog management to custom user controls, it helps to track the procurement process in real time. 

Key Features:

  • Tailors POs to match your internal processes and vendor expectations
  • Creates, tracks, and maintains an audit trail of all procurement transactions for transparency and compliance
  • Enhances financial controls by enabling PO-based purchasing
  • Ensures that requested items are approved against budgets before procurement
  • Syncs PO with your accounting system or ERP, whether via API, CSV, flat file, or direct integration
  • Integrates with trusted vendors through punchout catalogs to streamline the ordering process
  • Enables blanket PO, which involve making multiple purchases against a single PO, even when details of future purchases may be unknown
  • Provides PO workflows to save on shipping costs, unlock vendor discounts, and reduce paperwork 

Pricing: 

Starts at $2000/month with a custom pricing tier

Pros:

  • Easy-to-make amendments in the original PO
  • Enables ordering from multiple websites for resources, including Amazon
  • Makes it easy to upload documents to support expense and order reports

Cons:

  • Doesn’t offer payment services in UAE, so you will need to carry out payments on a different platform
  • Doesn’t cater to the UAE market, and does not support UAE-specific workflows such as VAT management
  • Cannot edit orders once they are approved
  • Cannot see the order history for a catalog item without running a report
  • Physical inventory has to be tracked outside Procurify

Which Procure-to-Pay Software Should You Pick?

Don’t choose a platform that offers the maximum functionality. Instead, choose the one that is user-friendly and flexible. 

Procurement is already a complex process that requires visibility by different stakeholders. Choosing a tool that offers visibility and accommodates complex business needs will help you transform your chaotic procure-to-pay process

If you want to get started, book a demo, and our team will help you identify the bottlenecks and make the entire process simpler and manageable.

Disclaimer: The comparisons and rankings of procure to pay software competitors in this article are based primarily on reviews found online. While we strive to provide accurate and up-to-date information, these reviews are subjective and reflect the opinions of the users who posted them. The information presented is intended for general informational purposes and should not be considered as a definitive guide for choosing a software provider. We encourage readers to conduct their own research and consider their specific needs before making a decision.

5
All
Spend Management
October 26, 2023

Vlad Falin

How to Manage Petty Cash Effectively in 2024

Not every expense in the company requires you to issue a check. Payments like petrol, supplies, stamps, etc., are paid via cash. For these business transactions, either the employees take cash in advance or put in a request for reimbursement. This mechanism requires you to set some cash aside and employ a person for receipt management and reporting. The cash is referred to as petty cash. 

What Is the Meaning of Petty Cash?

Petty cash refers to a small amount of money that businesses keep readily available for handling minor payments and expenses that are too small to be processed through regular accounting procedures. It is often kept on hand and is reimbursed periodically.

{{take-pain-banner="/components"}}

What are Petty Cash Examples?

Petty cash includes small miscellaneous expenses, such as:

  • Office supplies
  • Gifts
  • Client lunch
  • Refreshments
  • Postage
  • Medicine and first aid
  • Minor repairs
  • Transportation

What Is the Process of Petty Cash Disbursement?

The first step in petty cash disbursement is to define policies and procedures. This includes specifying:

  • The purpose of the fund
  • The maximum cash amount 
  • The types of expenses the fund can cover
  • The process for replenishing the fund

The next step is to appoint a petty cash custodian. They are responsible for handling the petty cash fund. 

Then, you set up the fund by transferring the initial sum of money into a safe or locker. This amount should be sufficient to cover minor expenses for a defined period. 

When employees make small purchases, they request funds from the custodian. After the purchase, they return with a petty cash voucher, receipt, and cash balance. 

The custodian reviews the receipts and provides reimbursement. They maintain detailed records of every transaction, including the date, purpose, recipient, amount, and a brief description of the expense. This record-keeping method ensures transparency and accountability.

After that, the custodian reconciles the petty cash fund at regular intervals. They add up the safe's cash balance and the receipts' value. The total should match the original amount in the fund. 

{{cs-cta-component}}

What are the Two Types of Petty Cash?

To manage petty cash, the custodian relies on either of the petty cash book systems:

1. Imprest Petty Cash Book

An imprest petty cash system involves maintaining a fixed amount of money in the petty cash fund at all times. 

For instance, you set up a fund of $100. When the fund gets down to $20, the custodian requests reimbursement and replenishes the fund to $100.

2. Columnar or Analytical Petty Cash Book

A columnar or analytical petty cash book is a detailed and structured method of recording petty cash transactions. It categorizes expenses into different general ledger codes for better tracking.

For instance, you create separate columns, such as "office supplies," "refreshments," "meals," etc. Whenever a transaction occurs, the custodian records it in the appropriate column and specifies its purpose.

What are the Challenges of Petty Cash?

While the process of petty cash seems linear and simple, it has many intricacies in practice. 

Imagine the custodian getting hundreds or thousands of requests and receipts every day. So, maintaining a petty cash system is easier in a smaller business with limited expenses and reporting needs. However, for larger enterprises, relying on manual vouchers and physical safes/lockers causes a lot of chaos. 

1. Vulnerability to Theft and Misuse 

Unlike an automated system, a manual petty cash system lacks controls and security measures.

For example, if the custodian is not vigilant, employees can use the cash for personal expenses. Similarly, if the custodian gets stuck between multiple requests and receipts, it leads to oversight.

Moreover, the physical nature of cash in a petty cash box makes it an easier target for theft. Since there's no immediate digital record, anybody can steal money, which goes unnoticed for a while. This lack of transparency and a digital audit trail makes it difficult to identify funds misuse.

2. Poor Receipt Management 

Receipts are the document of proof for the expense. With the traditional approach, custodians have to chase employees for receipts. This results in incomplete or unaccounted-for submissions. 

Moreover, relying on the manual petty cash process makes it harder. The custodians have to manage countless receipts daily, making reconciliation tedious. Hence, you end up with misplaced, duplicate, or even damaged receipts. 

A common example of this issue is when a custodian receives multiple receipts and with an analytical petty cash book to maintain. It takes them hours to reconcile, report, and ensure accurate categorization. 

The worst is when it's time to report, and locating these receipts takes hours.

3. Chaotic Approval Workflow  

In smaller companies, getting approval for expenses is easy. But, in large enterprises, even small expenses can prompt approvals from various departments and stakeholders. This makes the approval workflow complicated and time-consuming. This delays the fund release, disrupting the workflow and reimbursement process.   

For example, imagine an employee who wants to buy a subscription for less than $300. In a big company, it will prompt approval from the manager, IT, finance, and legal departments.  

All this back-and-forth slows things down a lot.

4. Internal Resentment

In big companies, there's tension between the finance team and other departments.  This issue occurs when employees can't access the funds and have to wait for approval. Such a delay disrupts the work or delays the reimbursement.

For instance, an employee needs to buy a subscription for work. But the delay in approval impacted the deadline and client relationship. This creates problems and stress between the finance team and other departments.

5. Branch-Level Petty Cash Management

Large enterprises use separate petty cash systems for departments at the branch level. This means that each department has its own petty cash fund to manage.

Managing small amounts of cash at individual branches is tricky. Employees misuse/steal the money as there's not much oversight. There is no visibility on how money is being spent. Maintaining funds for multiple branches becomes a headache. Also, departments find it challenging to request more funds.  

Reconciliation becomes challenging as the finance teams have to chase branches for complete information. This leaves a lot of loopholes for employees and branch custodians to misuse petty cash.

6. Tedious Reconciliation Process

Reconciliation ensures that the petty cash fund's balance matches the sum of all expenses. 

Manually, reconciliation in large enterprises takes weeks and is prone to errors. Moreover, when adding up expenses, the process is prone to manual errors, which are hard to identify and correct.

For instance, the custodian overlooks a receipt. This mismatch between the recorded expenses and the actual cash on hand can take him weeks to spot errors. 

7. Low Visibility Over Expenses

Traditional petty cash systems lack real-time data. At any given point of time, the custodian is unaware of the fund's current status. This lack of visibility delays financial decision-making. For instance, it can take weeks before the custodian realizes that the petty cash fund is running low. This can lead to temporary cash shortages for essential expenses.

The absence of a clear record makes it slower to notice problems and reconcile the cash. Moreover, transactions and expenses are recorded on paper, which leads to further errors. For example, when an employee uses petty cash to buy office supplies, there will be a delay until the expense is recorded.

Similarly, when many employees spend money simultaneously, tracking them in real-time is tough. This lack of transparency allows employees to misuse petty cash for personal expenses.

How to Manage Petty Cash Effectively With Pluto? 

To overcome the challenges described previously, you can not rely on any automation tool. Instead, you need a product that is tailored to your specific needs. While many tools can assist you in digitizing petty cash management, Pluto goes the extra mile.

With Pluto, you no longer need to maintain a physical safe or countless vouchers and receipts. Pluto records every transaction in real time and gives you visibility at each step. From receipt to reimbursement, you manage everything with complete control and clarity.

Unlimited Corporate Cards

Pluto enables you to issue unlimited corporate cards, simplifying petty cash management. It eliminates the need for physical lockers or safes, promoting smoother cash flow. The availability of unlimited cards allows you to replace shared credit cards. This enables the use of cards for even small petty cash expenses. 

Finance teams get full control and visibility over each petty cash expense in real time.

Employees can either swipe the cards for a seamless process or withdraw cash from ATMs. Every expense made with the corporate card triggers an approval workflow. It prompts employees to add receipts and managers to approve expenses. They can then add the receipts simply via WhatsApp and get reimbursed without any delays.

With all the data consolidated on a single platform, reconciliation becomes easier. This simplified process eliminates the need for a dedicated custodian to manage petty cash.

Not only do you get more control, but you save money with visibility at each step.  

Budget Control

Pluto allows you to specify limits for corporate cards issued. This ensures employees stay within budget. 

When the spending exceeds, employees can request more funds. The budget expands on the manager's approval in seconds, allowing for necessary spending.

Administrators can also issue zero balance cards. These cards with zero balances prompt an approval request for each expense. This approach ensures budget control without causing any delays or resentment.

Easy Receipt Management 

Pluto simplifies receipt management thanks to its seamless WhatsApp integration. 

Your employees can upload receipts via WhatsApp, which are recorded in real-time. The custodians no longer need to run after employees for the receipts.

However, Pluto does more than just store receipts. It extracts vital information through OCR, including vendor names, amounts, and GLs. As a result, your accounting team spends less time on manual tasks like creating logs.

Approval Workflow  

Normally, getting approval for expenses can involve a lot of back and forth. But with Pluto, you can set up custom approval processes to make the process smoother. 

When an employee uploads receipts, Pluto automatically starts the approval workflow. It notifies the custodian and managers to approve the expense, removing the friction.

The reimbursement process accelerates without any compromise on efficiency.

Further, Pluto uses OCR to detect duplicate receipts to avoid dual payments and fraud. This makes it easier to double-check expenses and approve the legitimate ones. 

Digital Expense Report  

Pluto offers digital expense reports that compile data from all the receipts. 

The report simplifies the task for your finance teams to see how each branch/department is spending. It enables them to make adjustments to policies and procedures as needed.

For instance, a company has small office supply purchases spread across various departments. Pluto's real-time visibility and report help to locate these costs. As a result, finance teams can reconsider and promote bulk purchases for cost savings. 

With Pluto, the custodian gets complete visibility into the expenses and the available funds at all times.

Close Books 10X Faster  

Pluto simplifies the process of closing books. 

Since employees can submit receipts directly through WhatsApp, custodians don’t need to chase employees for receipt submissions. This enables you to close the book 10X faster by accelerating the reconciliation process.  

Pluto records all transactions in a centralized digital platform. This streamlines audit logs and eliminates the need to maintain physical records.

With its OCR-based receipt retrieval, finding specific receipts and information becomes more effortless. This simplifies the reconciliation process, making the entire book-closing process faster. 

Replace Petty Cash With Corporate Cards

Small expenses and cash transactions can not be removed. However, finding an expense management tool can make petty cash management simpler. 

Stop relying on manual traditional processes to manage petty cash. Choose Pluto to replace your tedious petty cash books and vouchers with corporate cards. 

Sign up today to digitize your petty cash for complete visibility and control.

5
All
Spend Management
November 15, 2022

Vlad Falin

The Complete Travel and Expense (T&E) Management Guide

Travel and expense management is crucial for ensuring that business-related travel expenses are kept in check. However the accurate collection and reporting of all travel-related expenses pose a significant challenge.

As the person in charge of managing your organization's finances, you should be obsessed with making all expense management as efficient as possible in order to save money.

But how can you simplify the travel and expense management process when there are so many moving parts and people involved? By using the right tools for the job.

In this guide, you’ll learn the importance of having a good travel and expense management policy, how to make your T&E management more efficient, and what to look for in travel and expense management software.

What is travel and expense management?

Travel and Expense (T&E) management is the process companies follow to monitor and control business travel expenses. T&E management is vital as it affects the company's financial well-being directly by ensuring all travel-related expenses are tracked for tax deduction purposes.

T&E management involves tracking and controlling expenditures such as flights, accommodation, meals, and client entertainment. Effective T&E management ensures that these costs are necessary, reasonable, and aligned with the organization's policies and goals. This management is particularly vital as travel and entertainment expenses can quickly accumulate and become significant financial commitments for businesses.

Why is travel and expense management important?

As a finance professional, you know that cost management and expense reduction are crucial aspects of financial management work. One of the ways you can do this is by tracking all deductible expenses for tax reduction purposes.

And when it comes to the hierarchy of expenses you need to keep track of, those related to corporate travel and entertainment are of particular importance.

According to Mastercard, corporate travel and entertainment expenses have become the second-highest expense category.

But not only does T&E account for a large portion of the business expenses that companies have to deal with, but it’s also been identified as the second most difficult operating cost to control.

That’s why it’s so important that your organization develops and maintains effective T&E management policies, and uses the tools available to simplify T&E management.

The challenges of travel and expense management

Managing travel and expense (T&E) can be a complex task, often fraught with a range of challenges. These challenges can significantly hinder the efficiency and effectiveness of an organization's T&E process. Key challenges include:

1. Limited Fund Access: Employees often face constraints in accessing funds for travel-related expenses, which can lead to delays and complications.

2. Security Risks: The management of expenses, especially in a digital format, raises concerns regarding data security and the risk of financial fraud.

3. Outdated Policies: An organization's T&E policies may become obsolete or fail to align with current business needs and practices, leading to inefficiencies and policy breaches.

4. Lost Reports: Misplaced or lost expense reports can disrupt the reimbursement process, leading to employee dissatisfaction and administrative headaches.

5. Inefficient Bookkeeping: Manual and outdated bookkeeping methods can result in errors and inefficiencies, making it difficult to track and manage expenses accurately.

6. Lack of Spending Visibility: Without clear visibility into T&E spending, organizations struggle to control costs and make informed budgetary decisions.

7. Slow Reimbursement Process: Delays in processing reimbursements can demotivate employees and hinder efficient financial management.

How to make travel and expense management process efficient

1. Review your travel expenses and reimbursements

One of the first things you should do is take a look at your current travel expenses to see if there are any changes to be made.

Business travelers will always need to take trips, but perhaps there are some interactions that could be handled via videoconferencing.

You can also look for ways to minimize the expenses that need to be reimbursed. For instance, by using Pluto corporate cards, you could help eliminate, or at least reduce, the need to reimburse food expenses while giving you better control over them.

2. Examine your travel policy and keep it simple

If you are having trouble with your T&E management, you should take a look at your current travel policies (and if you don’t have one already, you should make that your top priority).

Your T&E policies need to strike a balance between flexibility and strictness. Too flexible and you create waste; too rigid and you limit the ability for people to do their jobs.

A good T&E policy should include the following:

  • How travel will be booked
  • The process to follow for reimbursement (including what type of supporting documentation is necessary, due dates, and other stipulations).
  • Any budget or spending limits, including the specific transportation methods or hotels that can be used.
  • Meal allowances.

And you want to keep your policy simple and easy to read. Minimize the jargon, use short paragraphs, and a simple format with bullet points, tables, and clear headings.

You should continuously review your expense policy, particularly as your business expands, to ensure that it’s aligned with any changes in your organization. 

3. Go paperless

Your team should be able to access your expense policy from anywhere and at any time. But more than that, you should aim to digitize the expense report process as much as possible.

For instance, implement the ability to submit digital expense reports and capture receipts digitally. Not only will this allow you to get a clearer view of your operations at all times, but it will help simplify your bookkeeping and easily manage receipts.

Pluto has this function! 

Digitize travel and expense management

4. Use travel expense management software

Through effective use of travel and expense management systems, you can consolidate the different scaffolds in your expense process, automate them, and eliminate time-consuming approvals while minimizing, or outright eliminating, human error.

Using Pluto allows you to cut a lot of the fat out of the reimbursement process. Automate reports, data gathering, and approvals for expenses that meet your policies, leaving only those that don’t meet your policies for manual approval. 

Furthermore, it can help you detect fraud by auditing your reports for duplicate expenses and any other anomalies.

And through software integration, you can use these different tools to create a unified T&E management process. 

5.  Top solutions for travel and expense management

There are many tools you can use to make your T&E management more efficient, for instance:

  • Pluto Card allows you to issue unlimited virtual cards, create travel specific card limits  monitor spending in real-time and most importantly, it allows your employees to reimburse quickly!
  • A travel expense tracker can provide you with automated expense reporting and expense tracking.
  • You can use a travel management platform that allows your employees to book flights, trains, and hotels and even rent cars from one place.
  • Pluto mobile app makes the expense reporting process much simpler for your employees.
  • You could take data from Pluto and travel management system directly into your accounting platform to further automate and simplify the T&E management process.

Expense management software for T&E management

One of the best ways to simplify your travel and expense management is by making use of the right T&E management software. However, with the increasing amount of options available, knowing which one fits your company best can be difficult.

Since no two businesses are exactly the same, there won’t be a one-size-fits-all solution. Having said that, you’ll have an easier time choosing between the different options by focusing on the specific features that you need, or at least should consider, in a T&E management platform.

Key features to look for in a travel and expense management software

1. Virtual cards

Pluto gives you the ability to create virtual cards for online purchases. These cards can be generated as single-use or recurring, giving you complete control in terms of how you set up your spending limits.

Virtual cards offer you similar benefits to corporate cards, in the sense that you get full visibility of your expenses and your employees don’t have to pay upfront, but they have the added benefit of being more customizable.

2. Flexible spending limits

Our expense management software can also give you a lot of control and flexibility over the spending limits that you set. Pluto allows you to set specific spending-limits for vendor and change them in real-time online. 

This allows you to track expenses for specific countries or cities, while removing the need to manually configure spending limits each time someone makes a trip request.

3. Expense reports and analytics

If you want to make your expense management more efficient, you’ll need accurate data and insights into the spending habits of your employees.

Pluto gives you real-time reporting and analytics, to give your finance teams an easier time combing through all the expense data. For instance, a system with robust reporting capabilities should:

  • Categorize expenses and organize reports by expense type
  • Reconcile your reports
  • Give you spending insights across all your departments
  • Keep track of violations of your expense policies
  • Provide you with real time spend visibility

By getting a clear picture of your expenses, you’ll have an easier time ensuring policy compliance, preventing fraud, and reducing travel costs.

4. No FX fees and multi-currency functionality

If your employees travel internationally frequently, you’ll want a product that comes with a card that doesn’t have additional fees or surcharges for international purchases.

At Pluto we have 0 FX fees. Furthermore, you’ll have an easier time managing these expenses due to multi-currency functionality automatically converting all transaction information to your country’s currency.

5. Mobile functionality

If you are trying to simplify your expense reporting process for travel expenses, then you need a way to work on those expenses on the go. Pluto’s mobile app would allow your employees to report their expenses right away from any location, while also giving them the ability to submit receipts digitally.

6. Integrated card management

If you opt for a software provider that also offers corporate credit card services, you’ll be able to automatically reconcile expense report entries with your card statements, detect any expense bottlenecks, and generally reduce the chances of fraud or misuse. 

Pluto card management software will also give you more control over your corporate spending. Plus, you’ll be able to set and control your spending limits with much more ease.

7. Compatibility with other tools

When it comes to the use of technology in expense management, the more, the merrier.

Pluto can be integrated with your accounting software so that it can automatically populate expense reports and simplify your reimbursement through the use of your organization's accounting data.

Furthermore, by integrating your TEM system with your travel management system you can instantly take the travel booking information and add it to your expense reports.

8. Automated workflows, expense categorization, and tax calculation

The entire point of using travel expense management software is to automate as many processes as possible.

This includes the ability to customize your travel policies and approval workflows, categorize expenses for more straightforward tax calculation, and determine whether they are tax deductible or not.

Furthermore, by categorizing your expenses, you’ll have an easier time complying with the tax regulations of your country.

9. Scalability

One feature that is sometimes overlooked in software platforms is the ability to scale your operations as your company grows. You don’t want to choose a system now only to realize it no longer meets your needs further down the line.

In this regard, Pluto is a great pick as we have the backend to support any business sidez from small teams to enterprise level accounts. 

Key takeaways

Effective expense management is all about visibility, flexibility, control, and automation. The most common pain points from T&E management come from outdated policies and manual inputs, which you should seek to update and simplify via means of a robust expense management platform.

When it comes to making your travel and expense management more efficient, the key things to remember are:

  • Review and update your policy continuously to ensure it meets the needs of your business and employees.
  • Examine your current expenses to look for opportunities to reduce reimbursements and consolidate expenses.
  • Use Pluto to automate approval workflows and simplify the expense reporting process.
  • Pluto also offers strong reporting capabilities, gives you a lot of flexibility for spending limits, and can be integrated with other tools for maximum effectiveness.