Intelligent Automation: The Next Frontier in Source-to-Pay Automation

Virtually all organizations have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. With lockdowns and social distancing, companies have moved to remote working models and many have encountered operating challenges related to these new ways of working. Companies that have already adopted digital processes have experienced minimal disruption, however those that are not digitally enabled saw their processing suffer.

In this paper, we highlight how intelligent automation can transform the future for the source-to-pay (S2P) process, discuss its applications across the value chain, and provide insights on how enterprises and service providers can capitalize on the opportunity.

Digitization continues to cause pervasive disruption to various functions across enterprises, and finance is no exception. Research indicates that digital disruption will significantly reduce the costs of traditional finance-related tasks like bookkeeping, accounting and auditing. Arguably, more than other enterprise functions, finance abounds with the types of repetitive processes (such as order management, invoice raising and accounts payable) that lend themselves to optimization through automation. The adoption of automation is progressing in transactional source-to-pay processes such as query handling and payments. According to a recent survey, about half of companies have fully or nearly fully automated these individual processes.

This wave of digital transformation is having a profound impact on the CFO role. Traditionally, CFOs spent a significant percentage of their time reporting historic numbers and optimizing cost. However, the modern CFO is being called on to act as a strategic partner to the business and to spearhead the transformation agenda across the enterprise.

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About the authors

Dennis offers over 25 years of experience as a global sourcing leader with multi-industry experience. Dennis has advised hundreds of companies on their sourcing strategies and set up shared service centers and business process outsourcing relationships around the globe. Dennis has advised on the largest US Insurance TPA and BPO deals and has worked with numerous insurance clients including Transamerica, ING/VOYA, CNO, Global Atlantic, Assurant and others. He has also led multiple RPA engagements assisting clients to set-up internal RPA Centers of Excellence or source RPA from a provider. He is a thought-leader on GBS, BPO, RPA, negotiations, governance and benchmarking.

Sakshi is a lead analyst with ISG Provider Services. She assesses the impact of emerging technology across Finance & Accounting and the Healthcare vertical. She also tracks market movements and key trends that influence the global sourcing industry.

Aparna has 13 years of experience researching and writing on the impact of digital transformation on customer experience, operations, people and culture. Her work has involved conducting in-depth research and data analysis focused on identifying future trends, key challenges and building business cases to develop differentiated frameworks that help clients profitably grow their businesses.

Paul leads the ISG Provider Services group, which offers a variety of subscription-based research and project-based consulting services to the outsourcing service provider community. Paul leads an international delivery and product development organization has P&L responsibility, as well as both sales and delivery targets.