The digital exchange of invoices between a supplier and buyer’s software or systems, or ‘eInvoicing’, brings clear business benefits; it’s an efficient and less cumbersome way of doing business, enabling a more streamlined procurement process.
At a macro level eInvoicing presents a significant opportunity for the Australian economy, prompting the Federal government to commence a consultation for the mandatory adoption of digital invoices across government agencies and businesses.
While adopting eInvoicing brings many benefits to the economy, these benefits can be fully optimised by bringing together what have typically been separate business processes (payments and procurement). Interoperability between these two vital business functions enables a more seamless and integrated ‘Procure to Pay’ process.
The New Payments Platform provides the capabilities required to do this (as outlined in this whitepaper here) through the use of structured invoice related data and enabling the automatic processing of payments using pre-authorised payment arrangements or ‘mandates’ via the upcoming Mandated Payments Service.
A key learning gained from analysis of overseas markets who have introduced eInvoicing is the role that user experience plays in driving adoption.
As outlined in NPP Australia’s recent submission to the Federal Government’s consultation, the delivery of the NPP’s Mandated Payments Service capability presents an opportunity for banks as well as third party service providers to offer a more seamless customer experience for the processing of invoice related payments.
As real-time payments infrastructure, the NPP can be instrumental in helping Australian businesses get paid faster. For small businesses, optimising cashflow is critically important. In order to benefit from real-time payments via the NPP, all a small business needs is a bank account that is enabled to receive NPP payments
Third parties who are looking to uplift their products and services for eInvoicing should consider how they also integrate into the New Payments Platform and prepare for the delivery of the NPP’s Mandated Payments Service.