Automating Purchase Invoice Processing in SAGE


The Digital Mailroom Ltd Purchase Invoice Automation solution for SAGE is cost effective, easy and fast to implement and will provide your organisation with an immediate return on investment.

You simply scan paper invoices or forward emails with pdf invoices attached to your Digital Mailroom (DMR) account. DMR turn your invoices into data and send you a file that you can simply import into Sage to create the purchase invoice entries at line level detail. It has never been simpler or faster to get purchase invoices processed in Sage. All of the invoice images are available for archiving, either in a folder on your server or PC or you can use the DMR Web Archive if you want a little more archiving functionality.

The image below shows the basic process flow;


Step 1: Invoice Submission

Incoming invoices are transferred to Digital Mailroom by the most appropriate means:

  • Paper invoices are scanned using any office MFP or scanner and transferred to the DMR secure server using DMRLink software (installed locally).
  • Incoming emailed PDF invoices can be sent directly or forwarded to your dedicated accounts payable email address at digital mailroom.
  • Incoming EDI invoices can be submitted via email, ftp, AS2, or other messaging format.

Step 2: Invoice Data Extraction

DMR will extract the required information from incoming invoices:

  • Invoice header
  • Invoice line(s)
  • Invoice image (for EDI, where no image exists, a default invoice facsimile can be generated to provide visual information).

Step 3: Reference Data

On a regular basis, the following supplier master data from SAGE can be provided in simple reports:

  • Sage creditor account code
  • Supplier unique data, e.g. VAT no, IBAN no, Post code
  • Default nominal code for supplier

Reference data (Supplier Master) will be used to code the incoming invoice, including Supplier Code, Nominal Code, Cost Centre, etc.   Where this can be automatically allocated based on existing data, this will be done automatically. All invoices will then need to be approved, if they are not defined as pre-approved prior to submission. This can be done simply by running through the output Excel data prior to import into Sage.

Step 4: Verification

Incoming invoices are checked against the DMR Master Creditor file and a mapping table is maintained which links DMR Master Creditor ID to the Supplier ID in the customers SAGE system.

Invoices are checked in the DMRBack Office system for validity.

Invoices that do not pass the system verification checks or that contain system identified errors are passed to the DMR Verify operators who will look at the invoice on screen and correct any errors or pass the invoice to a supervisor queue for further processing or rejection.

Step 5: Data & Invoice Image Output

Data files for approved invoices will be provided, in whatever format simplifies onward processing, for import into the customers SAGE system. Most versions of Sage support a simple Excel file import. This is the quickest, easiest and most cost effective way to get started with Purchase Invoice Automation for Sage.

Invoice image files will be provided, referenced appropriately, for archiving using local folders and windows explorer or where appropriate into an existing document management system, or the DMR Web Archive.

DMR also provides a simple to use web based archive for retrieval of processed invoice images. Lots of our customers find this very useful as it;

  • does not use local disk space,
  • is available 24/7,
  • is fully backed up and
  • makes finding invoices for audit purposes very fast and efficient.

In most implementation users find the appropriate invoice image by using the tracking number that is posted in the Other Reference field in Sage and using this to search (using windows explorer) for the invoice image. Supplier invoice number etc can also be used.

DMR can provide tighter integration with Sage, where invoice images are automatically archived in the appropriate memo tab in Sage, however this is not part of the standard service and needs to be scoped and quoted separately.

Benefits of SAGE Purchase Invoice Automation with DMR

  • Manual processing reduced by over 80%
  • Immediate removal of paper
  • Improved customer service resulting from fast document processing
  • Increased capacity
  • Reduced employment costs
  • No upfront capital investment
  • No admin intensive hardware or applications to manage
  • Improved staff morale and ability to focus on more ‘value add’ tasks
  • Ensures control and compliance
  • Timely and accurate reporting within your accounting system
  • Prompt payment discounts are more easily accessed
  • Helps avoid late payment penalties
  • Helps avoid embarrassing unpaid bills leading to suppliers putting you on ‘Stop’
  • Eliminates ‘lost’ invoices during approval process
  • Automated documents arriving in any form (e.g. Email and Post) and check, verify and post them automatically
  • Reduced carbon footprint
  • Better records for audit trail and compliance
  • Reduced errors

For more information about automating purchase invoice processing for SAGE please contact us by email, or telephone +44 (0) 845 604 6351 or even pop in and visit us at Suite 5 Bowcliffe Court, Bramham, Wetherby, West Yorkshire LS23 6LP

About Brett Parnham

Managing Director of Digital Mailroom
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