Article
  • Dematerialization

Digitalization of your customer invoices: 7 good reasons to go for it

  • Published on 20 March 2019

Whether you still doubt of the benefits of electronic invoices or whether this topic is being evaluated within your company, here are 7 good reasons to opt for e-invoicing.

Legal compliance

Since January 1, 2017, invoices issued by French companies to the public sector are progressively dematerialized. This is a legal obligation that falls within the framework of the Modernization of the Economy Act and which concerns all the suppliers of the French State. This obligation to issue dematerialized invoices to administrations, local authorities and public institutions impacts all businesses regardless of their size. The legislation continues to evolve in France, but also in Europe. Do not be taken by surprise and anticipate a possible obligation of the invoice digitalization for B2B exchanges!

Improved relationships with your customers

With a processing time of 14 days, the paper invoice affects the efficiency of companies and impacts the customer relationship. An electronic invoice is processed more quickly and can be automatically integrated into the customer information system for optimal traceability and better fluidity in the exchange of information. Another major advantage is the elimination of manual processing, which drastically reduces the risk of errors. Invoices digitalization is therefore an effective tool for reducing litigation while facilitating their identification and that in turn enables their faster and better processing.

Cost reduction

Do you have a clear idea of the cost of a paper invoice sent to your customer? On average, the cost of generating and publishing a paper invoice is estimated at € 1.20. A cost to which you have to add the costs of equipment, processing, postage and archiving. An electronic invoice costs only about 0.30 €, far cheaper. This represents a financial gain of around 75% that will be appreciated by companies issuing a large volume of invoices.

Increased productivity

Managing customer invoices in paper format is a time-consuming task for accounting departments. Invoice editing, printing, enveloping, addressing, postage, collecting or sending mail, lettering, archiving ... the operations to be carried out accumulate. By moving to the e-bill, you optimize your administrative management, and your accounting department can focus on other missions with higher value-added tasks. The elimination of manual handling  for the benefit of automated processing mechanically increases productivity.

Faster payments

By choosing to dematerialize your customer invoices, you will receive payments faster. The processing cycle of an electronic invoice is significantly shorter, due to the elimination of many tasks in the process. Your invoices are also processed faster since received by your customers in electronic format. We generally see that the payment delay can be reduced by 50%, which positively impacts the financial performance of your company.

Towards a more responsible behavior

By reducing the paper volume spent each year on invoice editing, you limit the environmental impact of your business: an excellent thing for the planet but also for your activity. This approach, which fits perfectly into your CSR policy (or which may encourage you to initiate one!) will open for you, for example, some public markets. The dematerialization applied to the customer invoice is a modern conduct that is part of a global logic of waste reduction that can be shared by your customers.

Digitization, a current phenomenon

Just look around to see that digital is ubiquitous in our daily lives. The use of digital tools is becoming the norm in companies, a logical approach because of the advantages of digitalization, among which we find speed, fluidity, traceability, financial gains and optimization of storage space. The sooner a company converts to digital tools, the less it is forced to adapt because of faster adoption by its trading partners.

 

The different types of electronic invoices

There are 3 types of electronic invoices that do not have the same benefits. The EDI invoice, which relies on structured data, standardized and perfectly secure, but which requires that your customers also have an EDI solution. The signed PDF invoice, which is legally valid with the electronic signature that certifies its integrity and authenticity. And finally, the digitized paper invoice, which is converted to a digital format from the paper invoice itself, and which presents above all an advantage in archiving, as it is not valid tax-wise.

Only a tax dematerialization solution for invoices that allow you to send documents in EDI or PDF format (with electronic signature) ensures compliance with the regulations. Otherwise, you remain obliged to send a paper invoice.

 

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