FIS EDC invoice processing diagram

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Key OCR invoice reading technologies and functionality

A combination of advanced technologies work in combination ensuring that invoice data is read accurately. FIS / fci uses validation and feasibility checks prior to the data export to SAP or Financials.

Introduction
The video highlights some of the advanced technologies that are applied to the task of automated invoice data extraction.
The technologies ensure that invoices are correctly classified and the data quality is maintained, prior to transfer to SAP / ERP.
The technologies free-up time for the AP team by eliminating or significantly reducing labour intensive tasks.
Who is it for?
For organisations with SAP ERP (ECC 6 or S/4 HANA) who wish to:
  • Replace time consuming tasks such as processing invoices received via emailed attachments
  • Improve the invoice data quality in SAP  by utilising reference tables from SAP for company code identification, PO validation, current tax values, and supplier identification
  • Relieve the AP Team from mundane tasks such as data entry and bar-code additions to invoices
  • Make savings by reducing invoice processing costs whilst making a significant improvement in SAP invoice data quality
  • Improve the task quality and workload volume for the AP team
Key Information:
Functions of OCR Reader and Integrated Invoice Processing
Emailed Invoices automatically forwarded to FIS / fci , the invoice reading component, and then archived for retrieval in SAP / ERP - no need for manual tasks such as printing, scanning and keying in invoice data
Multiple OCR engines are used and the data read is compared against all engines to support the data quality -  ensures data quality by highlighting data that could have errors
Invoice classification confirmed against standard tables in SAP / ERP to confirm or highlight potential errors in the invoice data
"Fuzzy logic" is used for comparing invoice data (i.e. supplier recognition) with reference data to compensate for inexact data on the invoice or within the SAP master data
Freeform recognition technology – automatically hunts for data in the vicinity of keywords to extract the key invoice data from day-one
Intelligent Knowledge Base – is used to extract the key invoice data by statistical analysis of the co-ordinates of previous successfully read invoices for each supplier.
 

 

 

 
schematic diagram working from home with FIS

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Automated Invoice reading from day one

FIS invoice recognition software checks data for potential errors prior to the export to SAP/Financials. The OCR reading includes an intelligent knowledge-base function so that new invoices are read correctly without intervention.

Introduction
By introducing technology to automate manual tasks and check for potential errors, the invoice reading process becomes more efficient and the quality of the key invoice data is improved. Accounts Payable Teams will benefit from the reduced number of mundane tasks such as manual data keying and pre-SAP classification of invoices.
FIS invoice reading technology (FIS / fci) is a stand alone or hosted application and although designed to work with SAP (ECC 6 or S/4HANA) can also be configured for other ERPs or Financials software.
Who is it for?
For organisations who wish to:
  • Replace the mundane, manual tasks of their accounts payable teams and replace them with technologies that automate the reading of invoice data
  • Remove labour intensive and expensive stages of invoice classification by eliminating the need for bar-code label additions to invoices
  • Make savings by capturing invoices at the first stage (early invoicing) rather than scanning invoices (or using a bureau service) retrospectively
  • Free-up time and make savings by removing all manual invoice classifications – no need for pre-sorting invoices
  • Support the accounts payable team working from home (i.e. coronavirus restrictions) by recommending that suppliers send invoices electronically via email or EDI
  • Improve data quality by installing technologies with validation and feasibility checks
Key Information : Replacing Manual Tasks
The FIS invoice reading technology (FIS / fci) is designed to model the way in which a human would interact with an invoice – reviewing the key invoice data (using multiple OCR engines) and searching for the data in the vicinity of familiar words and phrases.
Data is validated and against SAP/ERP tables where applicable and there are checks for arithmetic agreements between net, tax and gross values. The data from each supplier is learnt automatically as a knowledge-base gains experience with each supplier invoice.
Tasks that are replaced include:
  • Significant reduction and in some instances elimination of data-entry work by the accounts payable team
  • No requirement for bar-code labels to be added to each invoice
  • No requirement for emailed invoices to be printed and then labeled with a bar-code
  • No retrospective scanning of invoices or using a bureau service for "late archiving"
  • No need for manual invoice classification into categories such as company codes, currencies, invoice type (PO or PO-exempt)
Working From Home and Hybrid Working

schematic diagram working from home with FIS

FIS / fci  is an ideal technology for accounts teams that work remotely.
AP departments were not unduly hampered by the restrictions caused by the pandemic if the number of physical invoices (i.e. paper) are reduced.
The technology works automatically with emailed invoices or invoices sent electronically via EDI.
 

 

 
calendar day one

Automated Invoice Content Extraction

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Automated Invoice Data Entry

Automated data entry from day one. The OCR (optical character recognition) technology extracts the key information from invoices irrespective of the layout. Advanced machine learning technology is applied for improved recognition rates

rtificial Intelligence and Machine Learning

FIS / fci

FIS OCR document reading software (FIS / fci) is a world leading, innovative technology that is used to automatically examine a digital invoice (or other semi-structured document) and extract the required data with minimal or no human intervention.

The technology generates financial and time savings compared to manual data entry and increases data quality prior to importing into SAP or other ERP/Financials software.

Using the technology means more automated data entry and therefore minimises the administrative burden on accounts departments.

The is installed on its own separate server (outside of SAP ERP) and reads the content of documents that are captured as a digital scan or are received as an emailed attachment.

The software offers unmatched recognition rates for invoices, extracting both the header and line-item (position) content.

The OCR technology is normally paired with the FIS/edc (invoice monitor) to post a high percentage of invoice data automatically in SAP without the need for human intervention (no touch processing).

The solution is also normally enhanced with the FIS email reader and means that there is no need for printing and scanning of invoice attachments.

Reading Invoices on Day One

The OCR reading software is pre-programmed to identify specific information fields on an invoice and then extract the relevant data within close vicinity. The ‘freeform’ recognition technology automatically finds the invoice data irrespective of invoice design and layout.

  • Supplier details and invoice receiver checks are validated against the latest SAP data.
  • Invoice financial values are checked for feasibility by checking arithmetic agreement between net, tax and gross values.
  • Fuzzy technology compensates for incomplete or inaccurate data or poor quality invoice scans.
  • Several OCR engines are utilised to increase data reading accuracy.
  • Machine learning, any manual confirmations or checks are stored in an intelligent knowledge base for each vendor to build up a statistical probability of the key data locations.
  • Automated data entry means that the cost of processing invoices is reduced and savings are generated by the technology.
Reporting

Detailed reports illustrate vendor invoice volumes and data extraction rates for specific fields to identify issues with suppliers. FCI report recognition rates

Summary

For organisations who wish to:

Make savings by introducing automated data entry processes and significantly reducing the degree manual tasks.

Improve data quality by introducing automated validation and feasibility checks  against SAP data.

Alternative to:
  • The printing and manually keying in data from a physical document
  • The slow process of data-entry of key invoice data with inherent errors
Key Technologies:
  • Multiple OCR engines - working in agreement.
  • Automatic recognition of suppliers,  company codes and order numbers
  • Automatic forwarding of emailed invoices.
  • Machine learning by storing key invoice data from previous invoice completions
  • Freeform recognition, FIS / fci is pre-conditioned out-of-the box to search for key financial document data.
  • Intelligent knowledge base which stores data co-ordinates for all successfully read invoices and therefore reduces the number of corrections in the future.
  • FIS / fci reads header and line items automatically
  • Contributes to no-touch processing when combined with FIS / edc (invoice monitor)
  • Ability to read any semi-structured document such as sales orders, payment advice notes or vendor statements

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Automated Invoice Postings for SAP

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Automated Invoice Posting with SAP

Deeply integrated with SAP, FIS technology automates the posting of invoices and provides efficient tools for the management of invoice exceptions and queries

saving time saving money

FIS / edc (electronic document centre) is an SAP certified technology add-in that automates the processing of invoices and other documents such as credit memos, sales orders, customer payment advice notes and vendor statements with minimal manual intervention.

The automated invoice posting technology reduces manual tasks and eases time pressure on the accounts team. As a result, the administration burden is taken away from businesses.

Our software processes integrate with SAP to generate  financial savings as documents are processed automatically (no touch processing) and queries are handled more efficiently than with SAP standard.

The software is installed on the same IT infrastructure as SAP with no modifications to SAP standard required. The add-in technology works with the SAP database so that information is presented in real-time.

The integrated technology also includes additional functions to make business more efficient - specifically for the accounts team and invoice approvers.

FIS / edc (invoice monitor)

FIS / edc (invoice monitor) is normally paired with our automated data entry application. Combining these two technologies facilitate the posting of a high percentage of invoices in SAP without the involvement of the accounts team resulting in an unmatched "blind-booking" rate (no touch processing).

The application is further enhanced with the email invoice reader, which eliminates the need for printing or scanning of invoices sent as email attachments.

Invoice data for PO related invoices is compared to the open PO data and goods receipt data from SAP at item-line (position) level. A 3-way match, within a given tolerance, allows invoices to be posted automatically.

Approval Workflow

The Invoice Monitor supports several workflow functions including a workflow application running on the Web Dynpro platform, which allows approvers to action the invoice with forwarding and account assignment functions.

Invoice approval may also be completed from mobile devices and desktops via a FIS Fiori app. This solution provides a simplified workflow design for tablets, smartphones and desktops.

For organisations:

  • Wishing to automate the vendor payment process and make savings when booking invoices into SAP
  • Requiring a substantial increase in the quality of the supplier invoice data
  • With a substantial SAP ERP investment who are looking to enhance the payment processes and make financial and time savings
  • Reduce the degree of manual keying and administration tasks within the current process
  • Wishing to make digital transformations in their current processes

Alternative to:

  • Standard SAP ERP module
  • Physical movement of financial documents
  • Manual keying of data with no validation checks
  • Printing and scanning emailed invoice attachments
  • Using email as a workflow tool

Technologies:

  • FIS / edc has versions for both SAP ECC 6 as well as SAP S/4HANA
  • Flexible import of invoices via OCR and EDI
  • Line matching (MM) of invoice data with SAP data i.e. open orders and goods receipts in real time.
  • Automatic account assignments
  • Workflow options using SAP standards Web Dynpro and Fiori apps
  • Reporting tools to identify issues and bottlenecks to assist with further process improvements
  • Transparency and history audit for each invoice
  • Deep SAP ERP integration with worklists for accounts payable users
  • Presentation of EDI transactions as a standard PDF

Benefits:

  • Higher productivity of accounts payable teams with more functions in a familiar SAP standard GUI, freeing up time from repetitive tasks
  • Faster supplier payments - meeting corporate specific service levels
  • Invoice image displayed in FIS/edc and workflow modules as well as SAP ERP
  • Harnesses the intrinsic power of SAP ERP
  • Integrated into SAP but with no need for modifications to SAP ERP standard - quick enhancement pack and upgrade changes
  • Data stored once in SAP database - no data exchanges with external software
  • High blind booking rate - particularly for emailed invoices
  • Efficient interrogation tools for exceptions / query management
  • High financial return on investment
  • AP team directed to more value-added work as FIS/edc automates labour intensive tasks
  • Reduction in long invoice processing times
  • Transparency and visibility of the entire P2P process

fis customers