Business as Unusual: Navigating AP Issues During a Crisis

Business are affected by COVID-19 in many ways, including AP departments that are struggling to process invoices and payments when workers are forced to work from home. Like many business task, printing checks and getting approval signatures is something that most companies are only set up to do in person.

This year is proving to be an unprecedented season of uncertainty, as every person and business is feeling the effects of a global pandemic. In particular, businesses that have moved to a remote working environment are feeling the stress of processing invoices and payments in unfamiliar ways. How do companies stay ‘business as usual’ when the normal flow has been disrupted indefinitely? Many business continuity plans only address short term delays, not prolonged physical absences, which cause these measures to be inadequate for the current state. 

Let’s breakdown what we know.  There are three main aspects of the Accounts Payable process that have been heavily impacted by COVID-19:

  1. In a remote office environment, AP can’t receive paper invoices in the way they’ve traditionally done, by mail or via fax (Yes, invoices are still faxed in 2020). 
  2. If AP professionals are not in the office to physically print, sign, stuff, stamp, and send paper checks, vendors don’t get paid.
  3. Vendors face similar issues in that they aren’t at the office either.  Even when checks are sent, they are delivered to unmonitored mailboxes, causing liquidity to be restricted and checks to become stale.

Understanding the pain points helps provide a foundation for how to create a solution. Digitizing the payment process is a theme that resonates throughout these issues. At Viewpost, we provide support for Accounts Payable departments to keep business moving no matter where work is being done. By providing a seamless remote check printing solution, we help businesses quickly and easily automate their paper check fulfillment needs. Our proprietary technology allows vendors to elect to receive electronic payments in real time (eliminating the need for vendors to physically be on site to receive and deposit checks). And while there are many providers of invoice management services, Viewpost has made it simple for its customers by partnering with MediusvFlow to provide advanced invoice workflow automation.

There isn’t a fast fix for the current state of the world, but there are ways to curb stress and overload. A good business continuity plan addresses long term potential roadblocks, which paves a way for resumption of business activities as quickly and efficiently as possible. Sound relatable? We’d love to tell you more about how Viewpost can provide reliable AP support in every circumstance and season. 


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