What is invoice scanning?

The term invoice scanning is often used to describe the digitization of supplier invoices through Optical Character Recognition (OCR.) OCR is the technology that allows software to interpret machine printed text on scanned images.

Invoice scanning vs. invoice data capture

The term invoice scanning is sometime used to broadly mean digitizing a paper invoice. But in today's increasingly digital world, hardware scanners are actually rarely used. Instead, many organizations rely on an invoice data capture solution that automatically extracts invoice data from e-invoices or pdf files.

In the case an organization still receives supplier invoices on paper, you can manage invoice scanning internally by manually scanning the invoice and sending it to the accounts payable (AP) solution. Alternatively, you may outsource the invoice scanning process to an external party and only handle the digitized version of the invoice.

AP Automation - Invoice Capture screen
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Invoice scanning is the first step in AP automation.

Invoice scanning and data capture is the first, and important, step in digitizing your accounts payable process. Once the supplier invoice data is available in a digital format you can streamline and automate your invoice scanning and data capture to save time and resources. Most accounts payable (AP) automation solutions on the market today include invoice data capture functionality so that companies can automate the workflow all the way from invoice receipt through coding and approval to payment.

Any organization that receives a large number of vendor invoices on paper can benefit from technology to automatically process invoices. The more invoice data that you manually enter into your accounts payable (AP) system, the more benefits you can get from each invoice you automate.

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