Despite the many challenges thrown in the face of the hospitality industry, dozens of growth statistics indicate that the industry is projected to become stronger than ever. According to Hospitality Net, the annual growth rate of the global hotel and resort industry is estimated to grow by 8.1%—reaching $1.27 trillion by 2031.
But how can so much growth occur after such vast economic uncertainty occurred over the past few years?
The answer lies in automation.
As part of their post-pandemic rebuilding efforts, hoteliers are looking towards leveraging automation throughout operations, with a primary focus centering around back-office operations.
Through specialized automation software, hotel and resort management companies can boost their accounts payable (AP) processes by eliminating meticulous and costly paper-based tasks, saving their teams time and enabling them to focus on more core areas of the organization, such as property management, financial performance, or employee development opportunities.
As automation technologies become more advanced, hotels and resorts of all sizes can aim for a higher level of customer service by boosting efficiencies throughout their accounts payable departments.
Automating Back-Office Increases Efficiencies Across Workflows
The old system of manually processing bills and paying a large number of suppliers’ invoices by hand has now become archaic. For AP departments, gone are the days of filing these documents in a time-consuming, labor-intensive, and often error-prone manner.
Automating workflows with AP automation software simplifies these meticulous invoice-processing tasks, reduces costs, and removes chances for human error.
AP automation for the hospitality industry eliminates the chaos of cluttered desks, lost invoices, stacks of paper, and overflowing filing cabinets and uses specialized technology to digitize the entire process—including routine functions like invoice processing, matching, approval, payment, and reconciliation.
Manually entering data or transferring physical documents involving payment details is no longer necessary. With all the required information stored in one digital location, your AP department can keep track of the entire invoice fulfillment process remotely, while also gaining better visibility and gathering helpful insights into the entire procure-to-pay process.
AP Automation Means Lower Chances of Fraud
Manual data entry and payment processing pose a high risk of billing schemes and fraudulent checks. In fact, most organizations lose 5% of their revenue to billing fraud each year, with a median loss of $125,000. What’s more, fraud typically goes unnoticed for up to 14 months, upon which the monthly losses have reached $8,300.
Particularly for the hospitality industry, that’s no small statistic. A considerable chunk of your revenue can be lost to a fraudulent scheme, but the time-consuming rectification process can amount to thousands more of wasted money.
Fortunately, automating your AP processes reduces your hotel’s risk of fraud.
With well-implemented AP automation software in place, companies can detect fraud at its earliest signs, prevent false payments by validating supplier information, and receive alerts regarding unusual or suspicious payment requests.
Faster Invoicing Processes Through 3-Way Auto-Matching
In the hospitality industry, time is of the essence. Hotel management companies can’t afford to go through slow and steady invoice processing. Especially when critical financial transactions are at risk, keeping track of and staying on top of the AP process is critical.
From manually entering invoice information to emailing PDF copies of invoices to department heads for review and approval to mailing paper checks, the entire manual invoice process in hotels moves with the same reluctance as cold molasses.
And if your manual invoice processing is slow, your hotel vendor relationships could be put in jeopardy, too.
The solution lies within AP automation—or more specifically, 3-way AP auto-matching.
This solution offers end-to-end automated invoice processing capabilities to streamline operations and improve spend visibility. From converting invoices to an electronic format to eliminate data entry, to automatically comparing receipts based on custom standards, your hotel can experience significantly faster processing speeds.
Harness the Power of AP Automation with BirchStreet
When done manually, the costs of accounts payable processing start to add up fast. With the help of AP automation software, you witness first-hand the benefits of increased workflow efficiency, reduced risk, greater security, and faster processing.
BirchStreet’s unique AP automation solution covers all these bases. Through customized PO, invoice, and receiving receipt matching and specialized invoice management tools to remove data entry requirements, your AP department can streamline operations and improve spend visibility across all locations.