ADP: An E-Invoicing Alternative Across Industries (Part 3)

- February 11, 2013 7:23 AM
Categories: Technology | Tags: , ,

Please click here for Part 1 and Part 2 of this series.

ADP’s overall reporting and analytics platform (including drill downs on invoice reviews by suppliers for a comprehensive list of activities on an overall or filtered basis) is closely integrated with the application itself. Users can specify reports to run on an ad-hoc or periodic basis, as well as the report format they require (spreadsheet, browser-based, browser print friendly, etc.) Within the context of everyday activity, searching for invoices is simple.

A large invoice search box is front and center at the top of various screens with open text entry. It’s also possible to granular search for invoices in a substantial number of fields – status (e.g., approved, approved but not paid, re-submitted, on-hold) coding, verification, dates, supplier numbers, and invoice numbers or transaction size. Looking past reporting, within the payments area of the ADP e-invoicing suite, users are greeted with a summary screen that can provide information on alerts requiring attention, supplier set-up activities required to facilitate payment, reporting, upcoming payments, etc.

With a further click, users can drill-down on detailed activities (ADP refers to this somewhat confusingly as a “payment journal,” not to be confused with a journal entry) in a simple message center that provides a chronological list of activities associated with a particular payment including submission, scheduling, rescheduling, etc. All the other fields you’d want access to around discounting offers, status, overall payment status appear in a detailed section lower down on the same page.

Suppliers have access to similar information too, via a self-service portal, which can reduce calls to check on status. ADP does not charge supplier fees to submit invoices or other documentation associated with a transaction – nor to login to the screen. Support for dynamic discounting and broader supply chain finance offerings is limited at this time, although basic discounting is possible.

For regulatory compliance with transactions, ADP is supporting global activity, although its experience in certain locations with highly specialized requirements (e.g., Brazil) is limited. ADP has not focused on interoperability agreements like other providers.

One of the core tenants of ADP’s approach to e-invoicing besides enabling a rich level of information on the line level (with associated permissions, workflows, etc. based on line level detail) is necessary in the industry to drive to the highest level of straight-through processing as possible. Some customers are at the 95-98% rate today, according to ADP.

ADP is also deeply involved in the implementation, ramp-up and roll-out process with users, taking on many of the roles that traditional SIs and consultants would in more typical enterprise software type deployments. This high-touch model is one that no doubt is still one that many potential customers value (and is one of the reasons that network providers which also provide significant supplier on-boarding assistance, among other elements, are also thriving).

As we continue our analysis and conclude our series on ADP on Spend Matters, we will consider recent enhancements to their e-invoicing suite. Then we’ll conclude our coverage on Spend Matters PRO, including comparative capabilities analysis, what types of customers are likely the best fit for the toolset and more broadly speaking, how ADP’s overall company footprint and customer relationships could accelerate the growth of the solution.

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