Spend Management

5 Reasons Why Your Organization Needs a Spend Management System

By Anna Yen on August, 3 2021

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Anna Yen

Anna is an investor, financial wellness expert, and Chartered Financial Analyst charterholder with nearly 2 decades of financial experience.

What is Spend Management

Spend Management systems use automation to process and analyze corporate spend, allowing costs from across the organization to be seen in a digestible form in real-time. 

Without automation, any type of large-scale, meticulous review of payables across the entire organization – while every CFO’s dream – would have been impossible. But this is no longer the case. 

Spend Management is now available, and your organization needs it.  Here are five reasons why: 

  1. You’ll save money.
  2. You’ll reduce manual processing.
  3. You’ll find (and fix) errors. Lots of them. 
  4. You’ll stop wasteful behaviors. Lots of them. 
  5. You’ll be able to see the big picture.

#1:  You’ll Save Money   

Shareholders look for companies to stretch each dollar as far as possible. Spend management allows you to have visibility on your spend and know where to focus. When you’re analyzing and evaluating value/ROI, you’ll be able to ask informed questions, reward efficient vendors, and identify the winners and the losers with laser focus. 

 

#2: You’ll Reduce Manual Processing

Manual processing is bad. It’s costly and often leads to lost invoices, errors, and long approval processes that delay expense data accessibility. Data from manual tasks is inherently flawed because of outdated or potentially inaccurate information.

But even given all of this, the average business still receives 63% of its invoices as paper, of which 75% end up being handled manually.

An automated Spend Management system could knock 80% off of invoice processing costs, freeing up your staff for higher-value activities. 

 

#3: You’ll Find (and fix) Errors. Lots of them.  

It’s estimated that 15% of vendor invoices contain errors. Tracking down and correcting errors takes time, which is why Accounts Payable staff spends 84% of the time processing invoices.

Spend management can automate workflows for your finance team, including invoice matching with purchase orders and performing mini audits. By employing machine learning, smart spend management can also identify red flags for potential issues.  

 

#4: You’ll stop wasteful behaviors. Lots of them.  

About 81% of finance leaders admit blind spots in travel, expense, and invoice spend, allowing cost saving opportunities to fall through the cracks. Having real-time visibility to vendor costs takes you from asking which costs are going up to questioning why. With accurate and immediate data, you can ask better questions that are targeted and impactful. Research has shown that scrutinizing invoices could save your business as much as 11% of vendor spend

 

#5: You’ll be able to see the big picture.  

When finance teams manage vendor spend in isolation, the process often lacks coordination and visibility across teams. If a CFO wants to understand why vendor costs have gone up, phone calls and emails may be the only way to gather information. Siloed information reduces accountability and shareable insights. 

Spend management attacks information barriers by consolidating spend information into one source of truth that’s easily accessible. Within a single platform, relevant departments and employees can provide insights or feedback on spend trends and weigh in on important decisions.  

In addition, centralizing the storage of all relevant documents related to a specific vendor in a spend management system allows for earlier discovery of potential issues and time saved not chasing down the documents. Overall, you can build stronger collaboration between teams and a culture of spend accountability by using a spend management solution designed to empower both finance teams and budget owners.

Use Glean for Spend Management

Glean’s Smart AP System gives finance teams visibility, clarity, and confidence with their vendor spend. Founded in early 2020, Glean is now an emerging leader in the Spend Management industry and is trusted by major CFOs across the US.

Glean is designed to extract invoice data down to line-item detail, providing insightful trends and analysis as soon as bills come, instead of after books close. Empowered by a collaborative and powerful dashboard, you can improve processes, reduce costs, and make well-informed, strategic decisions that will enhance company performance. Simplify vendor management and bill pay with visibility and insights on cost drivers all in one place. 

 

Liberate Your AP Analytics with Glean

Learn how Glean can help your organization move from dated manual processes to data-driven automation. Schedule a demo with the Glean team today to see how spend management can transform your company.

 

 

With Glean, you get line-item level insights to make better spend management decisions.

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