Software that Saves CashBy Sharon Linsenbach | Posted 2008-11-11 Email Print
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IT technology costs money, and it costs a lot to sell it, too. A new breed of software vendors and services are coming to market with tools that will save solution providers money in operations and sales.
The economy is big news these days, with companies downsizing, slashing budgets and looking for any way possible to cut costs, improve efficiency and maybe even turn a profit. While the situation is certainly tough, it’s far from dire.
Solution providers can make inroads with both new and existing customers by helping cut costs from within, using a variety of innovative business optimization solutions, including e-invoicing, wireless communications auditing and software license tracking and renewals.
The most common document used in B2B transactions is the invoice, often created, sent, received, processed and filed manually using paper and personnel resources. Reducing the amount of paper, time and manual labor involved in the process is a no-brainer when it comes to helping customers save money, says Shan Haq, vice president of marketing and product development for e-invoicing solution provider Transcepta.
"We’re finding customers with companies looking for technologies that can not only help them cut costs from their budgets and personnel, but also with companies who are looking to keep their personnel and budgets the same and simply optimize their processes," Haq says.
Transcepta’s e-invoicing solution eliminates the waste and expensive manual processes that often go hand-in-hand with paper-based invoicing. Transcepta’s solution moves customers to an electronic invoicing system so they can send and receive invoices electronically for speed, accuracy and cost savings. Haq says many customers are seeing a 50 percent cost reduction within six months of implementing Transcepta’s solution.
"If [customers] can eliminate paper, and put the invoice electronically, directly into their systems without having to touch paper or use personnel resources to manually input and track those invoices, they save an incredible amount of money," he says.
Transcepta will also approach customers’ suppliers to develop an e-invoicing solution that further streamlines the invoicing process, since customers can both send and receive invoices electronically. Haq says there’s an added cost-savings bonus if Transcepta’s customers and their suppliers are both using e-invoicing systems – early payment discounts.
Many suppliers extend discounts or special pricing to customers who process and pay invoices within a specific time frame, for example, within 15 or 30 days. An e-invoicing solution takes the guesswork out of the equation for the purchasing department, who know exactly how long an e-invoice will take to receive, process and pay, thus qualifying the customer for early payment discounts and cutting costs further.
Haq says the Transcepta solution is a great fit for other solution providers selling complementary technology such as accounts payable automation or expense management software. Transcepta plans to include payment functionality in its e-invoicing product to increase the value and to "close the loop to electronically deliver payment back to suppliers," he says.
"We expect to see a renaissance in e-invoicing because the fact is, this is a constant pain point," says Haq.