SMB Automation of Accounts Payable and Accounts Receivable

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

International Journal of Business Research






While many large organizations have streamlined their business process end-to-end with entity resource planning (ERP) systems, many small and medium size businesses (SMBs) have yet to even consider (much less implement) ERP systems due to the enormous cost and complexity. The monumental challenge that SMBs often face is that financial processes revolving around cash management, relating specifically to accounts payable (AP) and accounts receivables (AR), are too long and resource intensive. SMBs also tend to stretch other resources thin when forced to focus on the completion of financial tasks rather than focusing on their core competencies. Nevertheless, cash management strategies related to AP/AR are very important processes that span other important organizational units, and have a tremendous impact on treasury and solvency. Hence, in competitive environment it is the task of a SMB to gain efficiencies in order to remain profitable and continue as a going business concern. One such efficiency can be found in the automation of AP/AR processes. As such, this paper provides an overview of cash management strategies, common pitfalls and problems with manual processes and AP/AR systems, and the benefits to cash management through automation of the AP/AR processes. The paper further provides guidance on the desired attributes of an automated solution, systems analysis requirements, and steps for implementing an automation solution.