Last year, French legislation prompted a movement towards the adoption of electronic invoicing. The phased introduction of “dématérialisation des factures” started in January 2017, with public administrations and large companies with over 5,000 employees being the first required to make the move. In January 2018, intermediate sized businesses were required to follow suit.
Electronic invoicing will have positive effects
The move away from paper invoicing for French organisations is a positive one that will save time and money. French executives expect that by the time e-invoicing is mandatory for all organisations in 2020, roughly 95 million invoices will be issued electronically each year, with savings of €710 million.
Although SMBs and “microbusinesses” don’t have to make the switch quite yet, those with process efficiency, risk management, cost reduction and compliance on their list of priorities will want to get ahead of the game. Those that do will benefit in numerous ways; from the simplicity of archiving invoices electronically, to reduced storage costs and productivity gains as data entry and manual processing steps are reduced.
Once the move towards electronic invoicing has begun, organisations will be able to store electronic rather than paper copies. Those using paper-based invoicing have been required to store 6 years’ worth of invoices before destroying them.
With GDPR enforceable across the European Union beginning in May 2018, the risk of physical information breaches will continue to make paper invoices an undesirable option. Storing electronic copies of invoices is a step in the right direction, but those operating exclusively with electronic invoices will reap the largest rewards.
Maximise the benefits with Purchase to Pay Automation
The move away from paper-based invoicing processes will be a positive one, and those wishing to maximise the benefits of electronic invoicing should use the movement as an opportunity to automate their purchase-to-pay processes, a logical next step for finance teams.
Every part of the invoice handling process is automated. Instead of accepting invoices in multiple ERPs and processing them manually, purchase-to-pay automation solutions such as Palette offers invoice processing, automated approval workflows, and PO matching. Palette solutions are in line with all French and European invoicing standards.
Find out more about Palette AP Automation here.