UK Local Government Could Save £80m By Improving Invoice Processing

  • 92.6% of all UK local authorities fail to meet industry standard for finance efficiency
  • Worst offenders paying 38 times the optimal rate for invoice processing

Research into local government authority accounts processing has revealed 92.6% of all authorities fail to achieve the industry benchmark for invoice processing.

The cost of processing a single invoice by a council’s accounts payable department should be no more than 79p. Yet the research shows some local councils incurring a cost per invoice in excess of £10, and the worst offending councils were spending £30.37 – 38 times what they should be paying.

On average the cost of processing one council invoice in the UK was £3.40. If authorities were to reach industry benchmarks, they would save £198,000 each year per council. Across the 404 local authorities questioned, that is an annual saving of £79.9m.

Research shows there is a clear need for councils to address inefficiencies in the finance function.  If they did, they would be able to reduce cuts to frontline services that all councils are currently facing.

Automation of invoice processing in local authority finance departments is a sure-fire way to save costs – in many cases it will also improve efficiency, meaning better cash flow for councils, have access to fast to deploy, flexible alternatives to expensive manual invoice management which so many authorities are still using.

According to the Audit Commission, UK councils are facing a reduction in government funding and local income leading to a cutting of services, the raising of charges and a clear need for increased efficiency.

For more information on how to streamline invoice processes, contact one of our managed print professionals today.

Info via The Audit Commission, November 2011