Generating Rebates and Optimizing Accounts Payable Processes with Virtual Cards
For many companies, accounts payable optimization is best handled by experienced and knowledgeable third party providers. Slow, costly manual processes bog down even the best accounts payable teams, and the resources required to implement the automation often presents an insurmountable hurdle that prevents companies from achieving reduced costs, increased profits and improved controls.
Fortunately, Centreviews Business Intelligence Suite (Centreviews) provides the tools necessary to automate complex, repetitive tasks without the need for upfront capital investment or technical resources. From accounts payable to accounts receivable to document management and more, Centreviews supports its customers’ front and back-office financial functions with scalable cloud technologies and world-class customer service.
Enabling Virtual Card Payments
To strengthen its position as a leading provider of accounts payable automation solutions, API Outsourcing, Inc. partnered with EML to extend the capabilities of Centreviews. Centreviews is a unified SaaS solution that automates invoice capture, approval and payments.
The automated workflow provides the means to follow existing workflow processes and procedures, which means Centreviews users can convert electronic and paper invoices into standardized, readable formats; route invoices for approvals to appropriate stakeholders based on amounts; and send out invoice information for payment processing.
Before partnering with EML, some of Centreviews’ middle market customer’s payment processing was limited to Centreviews’ check processing and ACH options.
“Many of our customers were actually utilizing other partners and banks for virtual cards,” says John Rees, Centreviews Vice President of Sales. By integrating EML Supplier Payments into Centreviews, API has enabled more of its customers to be able to process checks, ACH transfers and virtual cards within the Centreviews platform. Centreviews now routes payment files to EML through an automated file drop, and EML sends cards with remittance details to Centreviews customers’ vendors, and the payment files for checks and ACH are processed by Centreviews.
Providing a True Invoice-to-Pay Solution
With the addition of EML Supplier Payments, Centreviews provides an end-to-end invoice-to-pay solution for all of its customers.
“The biggest benefit we offer our customers is that they can send us a single file, and we can break it up on payment type,” says Rees. “From their perspective, the beauty of the system is that they don’t need to make any big changes.”
Centreviews users simply approve their invoices using automated workflow, and EML and Centreviews create, parse and process the payment file. The ability to pay with virtual cards also allows Centreviews users to earn rebates, transforming their accounts payable departments from cost centers into profit centers. They earn a percentage of each card payment as a monthly rebate, and their vendors enjoy faster, more reliable payments with more detailed remittance data.
Ramping up Rebates for Oliver Companies
One Centreviews customer, Oliver Companies, has already realized tremendous success with EML Supplier Payments. A property management firm with hotels and apartments in more than 15 cities, Oliver has a complex account structure that made payment efficiency a significant logisticalchallenge.
“We were writing checks from each hotel’s bank,” says Rees. “The nice thing now is that EML can parse off payments from each property and automatically pull the funds from their respective bank accounts.”
In an organization that treats each property as its own cost and profit center, this level of sophistication has been vital to Oliver Companies’ accounts payable optimization.
Oliver has also enjoyed rapid vendor enrollment, growing its virtual spend nearly seven-fold in its first five weeks with EML Supplier Payments .
“I’ve been impressed with the speed, ease and thoroughness of implementation,” says Scott Ruhman, Oliver Companies Controller. “Vendors are accepting virtual cards very well, and EML has been thorough and easy to work with.”
Since launching the supplier payment optimization program , Oliver saw a more than 600 percent increase in acceptance of virtual cards by their suppliers, and 45 percent of Oliver’s payments are now made with virtual cards.