Digital transformation: why combining AP, AR, and e-document compliance is key

June 8, 2022

Written by: Ben Sullivan

The digital transformation of a business means automating processes to make them easier to manage and oversee. As part of this, ensuring you are e-document ready across all departments of your business is now a necessity.

Traditionally, as part of digital transformation projects, businesses have addressed accounts payable (AP), accounts receivable (AR) and e-document compliance projects in isolation, using separate providers. However, governments are introducing e-document regulations that affect AP and AR processes, which means this approach no longer makes business sense.

Businesses worldwide are going digital

The digital transformation of a business means transitioning all manual or hybrid processes into fully automated processes that are easier to manage and oversee. As part of this, ensuring you are e-document ready across all departments of your business is now a necessity.Traditionally, the move towards automation and digitalisation has been at the root of an increase in the exchange of e-document types among businesses. However, more recently, changing legislation has become the main driver. Over the last few years, the rate at which governments have introduced e-document mandates has grown considerably. More than 70 countries have introduced regulations on e-documents so far, with many more expected to do so over the coming years. 

E-document compliance has a vital role to play

The most frequently regulated e-document type is the e-invoice. Mandates across the globe have started requiring invoices to be sent and received electronically. Other e-document types, such as e-orders, e-catalogues, dispatch advice and invoice responses are also mandated, meaning that digital transformation is starting to become necessary across multiple functions simultaneously, rather than a single aspect of operations.

Recent changes in global e-document regulations:

  • Italy has already mandated the reception of e-invoices, with Poland, Belgium and France following suit in 2023 and 2024, respectively.

  • India and Turkey have mandated that electronic dispatch advice be sent to the buyer.

  • Chile, Colombia and Peru have already mandated electronic invoice responses , with Serbia following suit in 2023.

  • Italy has mandated that public organisations transmit their orders to suppliers electronically.

  • Denmark is set to announce plans for an e-order and e-catalogue mandate.

Businesses must treat AP, AR and e-document projects as one

Suppose a government mandate is introduced, and your current provider isn’t connected to the government infrastructure in that specific country or otherwise cannot become compliant with the mandated e-document types. In that case, you will have to turn to another provider for a solution.

Before you know it, you will have multiple e-document providers across different countries and processes. Not only will this be costly to set up and manage, but it will outweigh the benefits of automation you initially set out to achieve and will ultimately become unsustainable.

Therefore, organisations must have a global partner that can convert, transform and comply with all the different e-document types that governments require across your AP and AR processes.

Here at Pagero, we stay firmly on top of the constantly evolving requirements and mandates worldwide. We will support you in automating and digitalising all processes involved in the digital transformation of your business, while ensuring compliance across all e-document types, focusing on becoming as futureproof and touchless as possible.

If you or your organisation are looking at AP automation, AR automation or e-invoicing compliance or have any questions about where to start, we would love to hear from you

You can also register for the latest updates to e-invoicing, e-document and tax regulations in your market.


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