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Do you feel as though at times, your Accounts Payable department could run a little more efficiently? This informative guide to accounts payable best practices is for you!

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a publication from onpay solutions

- A PUBLICATION from OnPay Solutions-


Accounts Payable

Best Practices



table of contents





Best Practice 1- Do You

Have What You Need to

Do Your Job Efficiently?


Best Practice 2- It’s OK to

Delegate Duties…but

Which Ones?


Best Practice 3- Is you’re

A/P Department as Safe

as It Can Be?





- A PUBLICATION from OnPay Solutions-

Do you feel as though at times, your Accounts Payable department

could run a little more efficiently?

Do you feel as though time and money are sometimes wasted on

getting the “little things done”….little things that prevent you from

really focusing on the bigger, more important duties?

Do you feel as though you’re A/P department isn’t as safe and secure as

it could or should be?

If you said YES to any of the above questions, then this eBook is for you!

chapter one


The Right Tools

the right tools

The Right Tools

ERP and Accounting Software Fall Short of Delivering what

Accounts Payable Departments Really Need

Modern ERP and Accounting Software packages often come

with payment automation technology built in to their systems.

This includes the ability to print business checks using a desktop

laser printer and make electronic ACH payments with

remittance detail delivered directly to a payee via email.

We are often asked why a business should use a third-party

payment platformif the company’s accounting system or ERP

has the technology built-into it.

The most important reason:

Security and control of the process should be the single most

important consideration that a company should have regarding

the automation of payments.

There are three ways that most accounting and ERP systems fail

to deliver the security that an organization needs most.

first we find that check printing directly from

First, we find that check printing directly from an Accounting or ERP

system to a desktop laser printer can typically be performed by

anyone who has access to the Account Payable module.

Best practices for A/P dictate that there should be a separation of

duties between entering checks and printing checks. Even when a

system specifies this separation, most ERPs allow anyone with

“check writing access” to print checks.

Look for a payment system that separates duties at the log-in

level… by the use of a password access to gain access to the printing

feature, thereby ensuring that only the users who have printing

rights can perform the check printing.

Also keep in mind that in addition to separation of duties, one

should seek a system that tracks each user’s activities by an

application’s audit report.

next consider the printer a standard desktop

Next, consider the printer.

A standard desktop laser printer can be switched in to “Copy” mode

or have a built-in “Reprint” button that can be enabled after a

document is sent to it.

This is a deal-breaking security concern.

An unscrupulous individual may print a check to the printer, switch

the printer in to copy mode and reprint an unlimited, unaudited

number of reprinted negotiable documents.

Always seek a check writing software that works exclusively with

certified MICR printers that have the “Copy” and “Reprint” feature

disabled. Or better yet, choose to outsource the print and mail.

finally many desktop printers also have a built

Finally, many desktop printers also have a built-in memory.

Again, the wrong person with access to a printer may be able to

“extract information” from memory and create negotiable


For this reason we recommend that printers are secured through a

special setting which will “wipe clean” all memory after a check run

is printed.

There are a variety of other reasons we encourage companies to

consider handling payables outside of their ERP systems.

Chapter 2 of this eBook will provide more insights.

chapter two





We recently had a discussion with a very large company about

Vendor Management that reminded us of just how daunting

it can be to maintain the company vendor database.

Simply managing the vendors can be overwhelming. With

more data mining and BI software available, companies are

now beginning to understand how they interact with their


This information can then point them then in the right

direction as they seek to expand their Electronic Accounts

Payable Program (EAP) and leverage vendor relationships for

maximum discounts.

From the vantage point of having more information and

knowing that it is best to pull such vendors into an EAP, how

does a company collect the ACH instructions from the

database of thousands of vendors?

companies may wonder who will call the vendors

Companies may wonder:

•Who will call the vendors

•Who will collect the ACH instructions

• Who will key data into the Accounting or ERP system

•How will we keep this vendor data secure... and the questions

of security could go on.

This may lead them to believe that migrating to E-Payments

seems to be more work, not less and without the time,

resources and the budget to address the migration that it's best

to keep business as usual.

To address this problem, Vendor Management Services exist to

help collect data and many offer access to vast databases of

corporate ACH instructions and Credit Card Acceptors.

others provide one to one communications designed

Others provide one-to-one communications designed

specifically for your vendor database.

Others combine a communications program with a web portal

allowing a vendor self-service model to collect ACH and Credit

Card deposit instructions.

Any of these programs may work for your company but most

come with hefty up-front fees or reoccurring monthly fees.

when researching vendor enrollment services keep

When researching vendor

enrollment services, keep

the following goals in mind:


Seek a vendor management service provider who can

streamline communication and launch your E-Payment

program in 30 to 45 days.


Work with a company that will help your company analyze

its vendor database then set a goal of converting up to 80%

of your overall vendors, but 60% of your most frequently

paid vendors, to ACH or Credit Card.

4) Do not require a significant change to current A/P processes

to make the move to electronic payments. Seek a program

that allows you to issue electronic payments even when/if

your accounting system can only issue a check file.

Vendor management and vendor data collection and analysis

may discourage or dispirit —BUT it doesn’t have to. Follow the

checklist above and you will find the right service for you.

chapter three


Protection & Security

protection security

Protection & Security

If your goal is to not waste money and be secure, then an ERP is

NOT the way to go...A Payment Automation Hub is the ticket.

Last year alone, Panorama Consulting Solutions reports that ERP

implementations cost most companies 5% of their overall

operating budget. And, enhancement projects (many of which

included electronic payment processes) failed to stay on track in


This is also despite the fact that some ERP projects were on and

even under budget. Regardless of the statistics, there are some

that just haven't given up on this process that is less efficient.

this is also despite the fact that some

This is also despite the fact that some ERP projects were on and even

under budget. Regardless of the statistics, there are some that just

haven't given up on this process that is less efficient.

In addition to the continuing inefficiency of issuing payments via an ERP

or accounting system, it is also less effective when it comes to security.

Below are three ways a payment automation hub can protect you.

3 Things to look for in a Payment Automation Hub (So it will PROTECT


1. The Payment Hub forces a separation of duties by the use of

password access to the printing feature. Only users that have

print rights will be able to print. Every other user is not only

blocked out, but monitored by an application’s audit report.

2. The application works exclusively with a SAEE16/SOC II certified

print and mail center.

3. Avoid desktop computers that have built in memory, which

makes it easy for A/P Departments to fall victim to individuals

stealing their data.

A Payment Hub is the Payment Automation Solution that accounts

payable departments really need.

Protect yourself by stepping away from payment modules in ERP's.

Protect yourself with a solution based payment automation hub.

now see how a payment automation hub can help you

Now See How a Payment

Automation Hub