The 7 Most Popular Free and Open Source Accounts Payable Software
Financial management is the most critical operational element of an organization. The financial department within a company is responsible for the accurate and timely recording, management, and reporting of all necessary financial information pertinent to the firm’s operations. Tucked away in the balance sheet is one of the most crucial financial parameters to judge a company’s financial viability - the Accounts Payable.
Accounts payable recognizes the sum that an operational organization needs to pay to its vendors or suppliers for services secured or goods purchased - including finished goods or raw materials. The process of verifying and registering accounts payable is complex - starting from the issuance of a purchase order to invoicing and vendor repayment. Also, the process was subject to the pitfalls of manual data entry and management, viz. human errors and rampant fraud. At this juncture, innovation in the accounts payable industry (in the 20th century) resulted in the rise of accounts payable software.
GoodFirms’ blog on free and open-source accounts payable software will help enlighten users on the features and benefits of digital accounts payable systems. It will also clarify how businesses can gain a competitive advantage in their respective industries with automated accounts payable software. So, do not waste any more time with outdated manual accounting processes. Read about the best AP automation software today and take action to empower your business.
The Accounts Payable Process
The accounts payable process is relatively simple and represents itself in the following steps below:
Challenges Due to Poor Accounts Payable Management
Due to the intrinsic nature of accounts payable in an organization’s financial and operational stability, poor accounting management tends to have disastrous consequences for any business. Some of the biggest challenges introduced by faulty accounts payable management are as follows:
- Hard-Hitting Financial & Time-Wastage Costs Caused by Account Payable Data Entry Errors
- Poor Vendor Relationship Management
- Lack of Automation Leading to Slower Processing and Payout Cycles
- Inefficient Document Storage - Resulting in Lost Records
- No Transparency or Audit Trails in Accounting Processes Resulting in Duplicate Payments
- Rampant Fraudulent Practices Owing to Lack of Accounts Payable Regulations
- Complex Billing Practices Leading to lowered trust between vendors, suppliers, and organizations
What is an Accounts Payable System?
An accounts payable system or Accounts payable automation software is a suite of digital tools and applications that helps organizations accurately record and manage all facets of their accounts payable process. Automation is the focus of accounts payable software. The AP automation software increases the efficiency and accuracy of the financial department by removing the unpredictability errors caused by certain administrative aspects of account payables recording - viz. Invoicing, data extraction and entry, and purchase order (PO) reconciliation, besides other processes. Through accounts payable processing software, vendor management becomes simplified, while it is easy to track payments and follow up on necessary approvals through an audit trail.
Using accounts payable systems is straightforward. They also provide a much-needed fillip to organizations looking to scale up their operations while enforcing appropriate accounting standards and principles diligently.
Competitive Business Advantage Through Automated Accounts Payable Software
Accounts payable and receivables software provide a significant fillip to an organization’s operations. Automating various tasks in the accounts payable process (above) helps streamline and simplify complex billing procedures - translating to time savings and labor efficiency improvements. Automation also provides a significant cost advantage. Organizations can now invest less in labor capital and other expenses, complementing cost-saving measures.
Fast billing processes and shortened payment cycles will mean strengthened supplier relationships. As seen in many instances, good vendor management fast-tracks purchasing approvals, increases organizational output, and shortens time to market for products, giving organizations a definitive competitive edge. Reporting and analytics dashboards help pinpoint account payable trends and patterns help businesses further optimize process workflow.
Recording Invoices also provides organizations with a significant advantage. It reduces the chances of duplicate payments. A benchmarking assessment by APQC suggested that the range of duplicate invoices from among those organizations polled was between 0.8 percent and 2 percent. The lesser the duplicate payments, the better firms can reign in costs for enhancements elsewhere. Accounts payable automation software also helps businesses extract exact data whenever needed. It means organizations can make quicker decisions and act fast on available information to gain significantly.
Who Can Use Accounts Payable Automation Software?
Traditional accounting processes were so complex that only accountants and personnel in the financial administration of an organization were familiar with their operation. However, the 21st century continues to deliver exceptional digital products, operable by a vast majority of users irrespective of skill or capability. Accounts payable software is one of them.
AP Automation software is therefore usable by the following set of users:
Features of Accounts Payable Software
Accounts Payable software helps businesses improve their efficiency with the following features:
Advantages of Accounts Payable Software
As the name of the software suggests, AP automation software is incredibly applicable to every business, irrespective of size, scale, and industry specialization. Some key advantages of accounts payable processing software are as follows:
Market Options for Accounts Payable Software
Despite the complexities involved in developing AP automation software, the market is replete with a plethora of excellent options. Available choices vary from Free and open source accounts payable software, and freemium accounts payable processing software to free accounts payable software, and premium accounts payable systems.
Before, we go through the list of the best free and open source accounts payable software, let's have a look at one of the most popular one in this category - SoftCo AP.
SoftCo AP is one of the most popular cloud-based accounts payable software that can help you eliminate paper and manual tasks by automating both PO and non-PO supplier invoices, including registering and indexing invoice details, onboarding vendor and user data, and capturing PO numbers. By incorporating AI (Artificial Intelligence) and Adaptive Learning technologies, it is capable of minimizing manual intervention in preparing supplier invoices. SoftCo AP has reduced query resolution by 75% for many companies, thus enabling them to spend more time on value-adding activities instead of reconciliation, resulting in increased productivity and cost-efficiency.
- Includes full auditing capabilities enabling quick and efficient approval of invoices in bulk quantities
- Provides clear visibility across accounts payable lifecycle to CFOs and finance managers
- Has the ability to transfer invoices to appropriate approvers in real-time via email or the SoftCo App.
- Includes invoice currency rules to minimize errors and maximize data quality
- Facilitates adding PO number to invoice header details to search, filter, report, and align within ERP system
- Can integrate with ERP and finance systems to easily access invoices and enable versatile functionality
- Provides real-time & clear visibility of the status of the invoices
If your budget is limited and you are looking for extensive customizable options, the below mentioned list of the free and open source accounts payable software can be of great help to you.
Free and Open Source Accounts Payable Automated Software Comparison
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Best Free and Open Source Accounts Payable Software
OpenMiracle is simple accounting software with free and open source accounts payable system features. The accounts payable and receivables software specializes in managing inventory, resources, assets, capital, liabilities, and expenses as per traditional and modern accounting methods to ensure correctly balanced books. OpenMiracle is easy to use and provides ecosystem-specific plug-ins such as Miracle I and Miracle Skate to improve the functionality of the core software. OpenMiracle promises to improve financial performance by improving the accuracy, accessibility of financial data. The AP automation software is easily customizable as per organizational requirements and assures users of lifetime accessibility.
Source - OpenMiracle
The best accounts payable software features of OpenMiracle are listed below:
- Automation of time-intensive administrative tasks such as business reports, cash flow records, profit and loss statements, barcode generation for accounting purposes, etc.
- Expense Management Tools to monitor company fund outflow - including payrolls, purchase records, etc.
- Invoicing Management - purchase invoice, sales invoicing, etc.
- Payment reporting (debit and credit notes), vouchers, and management to ensure timely appropriation of funds
- Purchase Order Reconciliation after successful fulfillment of the order by vendor
- Inclusion of vendor or supplier management sub-features including registration, invoices, fund transfer status, and recording, etc.
- Granular accounts payable Reporting and Analytics functions
- Efficient Tax Calculation methods including the adoption of automation
LedgerSMB is accounting software with free and open source accounts payable software features. The Accounts payable automation software comes with an intuitive and easy-to-use interface that shortens the time to deploy the software solution. It is easily customizable with the organization’s desired features to boost the capability and process workflow. The accounts payable processing software also integrates with a host of other applications to increase productivity. The latest version of the software is version 1.8.11.
Source - LedgerSMB
LedgerSMB is implementable as an accounts payable software thanks to the following features:
- Exceptional Vendor data recording and Relationship Management functions
- Purchase and Sales Invoicing
- Expense and Payment Management - including cheque issuances, Tracking cash receipts and transfers, bank reconciliations, etc.
- Reporting and Analytics dashboard to help analyze accounts payable process efficiency
- Easy recording of Invoices for sales and purchases
- Easy Approvals Management tracking for certain projects to specific vendors
- Purchase order tracking, updates, and reconciliation are order fulfillment
- Automation of a lot of administrative processes such as goods tracking, billable payment hours, etc.
- Taxation Calculator and recording
Instabooks is a free accounts payable software. The AP automation software promises to increase the productivity of the financial division by providing AI-driven tools that help balance the books. Instabook's accounts payable system integrates with tools such as Wave, Xero, and MYOB, to name a few. The accounts payable automation software claims to save up to $7000 on accounting costs for small and medium-sized businesses. It is hardware platform-independent and supports the latest accounting principles and standards. It can also integrate with ecosystem-bound tools such as Business Loans and Business Insurance.
Source - Instabooks
Some of the best accounts payable processing software features of Instabooks are:
- Automated data entry into ledgers, cash flow statements and VAT
- Payment Management using industry-leading solutions from Visa, MasterCard, Amex, etc.
- Innovative Online Invoicing using preset templates
- Accurate Tax Calculation tool with increased efficiency through automation
- AI-driven Expense Tracking with transparent entry into journals and ledgers
- Granular and visualized Reporting and Analytics on financial data of the organization
- Incredibly fast and streamlined Purchase Order & Bank Reconciliation
- Bill payment and receivables reminders
- Approval Management through the project management tool
Fidesic is a trial-based free accounts payable software. The AP automation software helps businesses increase the visibility of their financial operations, balancing the books accurately - specifically for multi-location MNCs and SMEs. The Accounts payables system lets users access operation critical data through a central dashboard. It also easily integrates with Microsoft Dynamic GP and Intuit’s Quickbooks.
Source - Fidesic
The essential AP accounts payable automation software features of Fidesic are as follows:
- Easy and remote Approvals Management using a stable internet connection
- Simple Payments Management using Microsoft Dynamics GP. It includes payments status tracking, payments data capture, etc.
- Automation of key Invoicing and administrative processes (Including invoice capture from multiple sources, etc.)
- Efficient Tax Calculation measures
- Dedicated Vendor Management Portal - submission of invoices, payment tracking, etc.
- Effortless ERP integrations
- In-depth Reporting and Analytics to present an overall view of data using the latest and secure Extraction techniques
Yooz is a trial-based free accounts payable system. The AP automation software promises up to 80 percent accounts payable reduction and supports a mobile application for enhanced workflow efficiency. The easy-to-use interface supports the latest security protocol updates, which reduces the chance of adverse events, especially concerning bills and invoices. Yooz received multiple awards including, the ‘Top 50 Firms to Watch In 2020’, the Rising Star award for Accounts Payable software, and four more accolades.
Source - Yooz
Some of the best accounts payable and receivables software features of Yooz include:
- P2P Cloud Automation of key Processes - include Approvals Management and Invoicing
- Effective Purchase Order Requests and Reconciliation
- AI-driven Data Extraction from scanned documents
- Integration with over 250 Financial Management Tools to securely enhance the functionality of Yooz
- Payment Management - including the ability to check for eligible discounts, track payments made, etc.
- Secure document storage to prevent fraud and associated compliance management processes
- Reporting Dashboard which captures all relevant Vendor Management data including - pricing, negotiated discounts, etc.
- Dedicated customer support
AvidXchange is a demo-based free accounts payable software. Furthermore, a special promotion deleverages the user from paying any fees for using the software for 6 months. The software provides remote and mobile platform access. The AP automation software helps increase the visibility of processes while integrating with over 180 different accounting solutions. AvidXchange has four types of constituent solutions viz. AvidInvoice, AvidPay, AvidBuy, and AvidUtility - each of which handles a specific function. The accounts payable processing software allows users to create a customized workflow for purchase order approvals and financial reporting - keeping control over crucial processes. The accounts payable automation software is fully available on the cloud and provides real-time information on growth and financial productivity.
Source - AvidXchange
Some of the critical AP automation software features of AvidXchange are:
- Automated Processing including - Invoicing, bill management, Approvals Management, etc.
- Payment Management - Payment status tracking, ePayments transfers, etc.
- Vendor Management practices such as frequent supplier requisition and billing, vendor information, etc.
- Automated PO Reconciliation for faster bill payment confirmations and recording
- Real-Time Reporting standards in the quest for the highest operational efficiency
- Optimal Data Extraction - for integration purposes alongside best in class security
Tipalti is a demo-based free accounts payable software. Tipalti also consists of an open API for customization of the software as per business needs. The AP automation software is an end-to-end solution. The accounts payable automation software increases the operational and financial efficiency of firms. It does so by eliminating mundane tasks through automation. It also ensures the implementation of the best standard accounting principles. The software implements access controls to limit data exposure per user. It also provides an audit trail to de-rail attempts at a fraudulent activity. The entire platform is cloud-based, allowing users the flexibility of access. Also, business subsidiaries may use the AP automation software as it was a single synchronous software.
Source - Tipalti
Some of the best features of Tipalti accounts payable processing software are as follows:
- Automation of mundane tasks - Invoice management, PO matching, PO Reconciliation, Approval Management, etc.
- Taxation interface that allows standard calculations, deductions, etc.
- Payment Management using a global system, multi-mode transfer, payment tracking, etc.
- Vendor Management through self-service supplier interface
- ERP Integrations
- Excellent Data Extraction using the latest OCR techniques
- Reporting and Analysis functions to highlight invoice and PO patterns, etc.
Xero, APXpress, and Fraud.net are some of the best accounts payable and receivables software. However, Sage Intacct continues to prove itself as the market’s most popular, go-to accounts payable automation software. Let us take a deeper look at Sage Intacct below:
Sage Intacct offers a suite of financial management tools, one of them being an accounts payable system. The AP automation software claims to reduce accounts payable processing time by up to 65 percent and provides real-time status updates of pending invoices, bills, and approvals. Sage Intacct’s Accounts payable software also creates internal workflows to appropriate audit trails and visibility into the entire accounts payable process, thereby protecting data and ensuring accurate display and publishing of data.
Source - Sage Intacct
The accounts payable and receivables software features of Sage Intacct are:
- Expense Management - Easy adjustment of budgets to meet unforeseen spending, tracking for budgetary compliance, multi-location expenditure recording, etc.
- Automation - Elimination of unnecessary workflows and manual processes in the accounting process
- Invoicing - Efficiency tracking and quick processing of all Invoices for seamless credit disbursement
- Payment Management - Integration with American Express Global Commercial Services to provide an automated check, credit card, or ACH payments. Choosing individual invoices for payout is possible too.
- Reporting and Analytics dashboard to strengthen decision-making through AP Automation software
- Effective real-time PO Reconciliation positively impacts the payables period to vendors
- Approvals Management is completely automated to help reduce the time taken to place purchase orders and other crucial business activities
- Vendor Management tools - specific reports, bill tracking, invoice checks, etc.
AP automation software is greatly in demand - its market size of $1.9 billion may seem smaller compared to similar software categories - but the industry is growing at 11 percent CAGR and it is scheduled to hit the $3.1 Billion mark by 2024. However, there are signs that businesses are coming to grips with the power of automation in the accounts payables and receivables software. A recent study revealed that 78 percent of correspondents admitted to paying off suppliers and vendors late. It does not stop there - 56 percent of businesses had incorrect forecasts owing to AP issues. A startling 63 percent of the correspondents admitted to receiving duplicate invoices, while 33 percent paid them off. Businesses have the opportunity to shrug off the above inconsistencies and adopt accounts payable automation software.
In 2020, another study highlighted that 71 percent of businesses surveyed would introduce AP automation software into their workings by the end of the calendar year. The faster organizations adopt accounts payables automation software the lesser hours their workforce will need. Accounts payable software also brings about a reduction in fraud-related alerts, while streamlining businesses vendor management to bring about a revolution in the operations of the firm.
Be sure to use the comments section to provide your opinion on the article. The Feedback portal on GoodFirms will provide users with a platform to review any software on the aforementioned list. GoodFirms’ Buyer’s Guide on accounts payable software will help firms choose the right AP automation software for their business - taking into account a multitude of factors - viz. Price, Features, deployment model, etc. Businesses looking to increase their potential and capabilities using a combination of software, and not just accounts payable systems, can refer to GoodFirms’ exhaustive Software Directory for all necessary software types.
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