The traditional view of outsourcing has tended to see cost reduction as one of the primary drivers for any customer. The idea that the ‘total cost of ownership’ of a particular business function over the term of the outsourcing contract should be lower is very often part of the business case. Similarly, seeing outsourcing as a means of transforming a collection of assets on the balance sheet into a recurring service charge, and reducing (or at least apparently reducing) capital costs is another common refrain at the outset of deals.
Robots hit the headlines over many national and industry outlets this week. The clincher statistic, as reported by Bloomberg, The Times, and most of the international press, is that over five million jobs will be lost by 2020 as a result of developments in artificial intelligence, robotics and other technological change.
According to the Institute of Finance & Management, 61% of top global companies have implemented full Accounts Payable (AP) automation. This occurrence has had its challenges.
Primarily, the universal commonality of budget allocation is the obstacle to overcome. When a company’s CFO is prioritising expenditures, their eye remains on cash flow and compliance/risk mitigation. AP must factor into these objectives to achieve funding for automation (or for anything else; with decisions being made by priority).