No matter how large or small your organization, how you operate or receive funding, or what kind of programs you devote your energies to, there is one universal truth - everyone has bills to pay.
From fiscal sponsor disbursements to rent and utilities, paying bills can often become one of the most annoyingly time-consuming aspects of day-to-day operations. To maintain solid financial controls and prevent fraud, all bills need to be assigned, approved, and paid in the proper order, by the proper people, with the proper division of responsibilities. If your organization has a single staff member handling all Accounts Payable responsibilities, that’s a sure recipe for mismanagement.
So how do you maintain all the necessary internal controls and still manage to get your bills paid on time? While there are many different bill management systems out there, we’re partial to Bill.com, an integral function of our full-service CFO Solutions services. Here are just a few reasons why we love Bill.com.
1. Digital Solutions On The Go
When an organization only has one or two people authorized to approve incoming bills, it can be a huge pain in the neck when those approvers are out of the office. But with Bill.com, there’s no need to wait. With 24/7 online access and a mobile app, Bill.com lets you review and approve bills from anywhere. Simply log into their secure website or open the app on your smartphone, and you’ll see all the bills ready for your approval. Click “Approve,” and then you can get back to your conference, fundraising event, or much-needed vacation, knowing that you won’t have a huge stack of overdue bills on your desk when you get back.
2. Easy Document Storage
Sure, Bill.com is primarily a bill payment system, but did you know it also functions seamlessly as a digital document storage solution? When using Bill.com, all invoice images, accounting information, and payment references are automatically logged, dated, and filed away. Need to pull up an old invoice, or check when something was paid? Just run a search for that vendor, and all the information will be at your fingertips. And take it from us - when it’s time for your annual audit, your accountant will love this just as much as you do!
3. Headache-Free Cash Flow
If you’re used to juggling many payments against a tight bank balance, Bill.com’s payment withdrawal system will be a relief. Instead of waiting until the check is cashed to withdraw the funds from your bank account, Bill.com withdraws it right away. No more waiting and hoping that your vendor doesn’t cash their check the same day payroll goes out! With Bill.com, you have more control over your cash flow.
4. No More Signing Checks
Give your check-signing hand a break. When you approve and schedule a bill for payment, Bill.com prints and mails the checks for you, or can even pay your vendor electronically. E-payments are faster than checks, sending the funds directly to your vendor’s bank account within 2-3 business days. Genius!
5. Automatic Fraud Controls
As accountants, our favorite thing about Bill.com is the simple way it separates responsibilities, making it easy to maintain internal financial controls. Assign each user of Bill.com a customized level of access, so no one can overstep their authority. With Bill.com, you can make it impossible to pay any bill without the correct approval, and can easily see who approved each bill and when. Even better, Bill.com syncs with QuickBooks Online and other accounting systems, preventing the need for manual entry (and potential mistakes) in your books.
Whether you choose to use Bill.com, another bill pay system, or stick to the old-fashioned way of doing things, it is crucial to maintain a healthy system of internal controls. Fraud can happen anywhere - yes, even to you! - and the best way to avoid it is to eliminate the opportunity.