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SAGE AP Automation '24: Case Studies & 250+ Review Analyzed

SAGE AP Automation '24: Case Studies & 250+ Review AnalyzedSAGE AP Automation '24: Case Studies & 250+ Review Analyzed

Automating AP processes is a crucial phase for autonomous finance. Sage offers accounts payable automation in:

  • invoice and payments processing
  • receiving & tracking invoices
  • management of the invoice approval process & more.

ERP vendors like Sage provide all-in-one suite and single source for important details like financials, inventory and vendor data. While Sage offers an AP solution, businesses can procure add-ons such as Pairsoft that can improve document management & financial workflows.

Explore Sage’s AP automation solutions, their capabilities, shortcomings with ways to overcome them, and case studies.

Sage AP automation overview

41% of companies plan to make their invoice payment process automated and 71% of the people in charge of invoices think that smart systems are very important for making the AP process better.1

In AP automation, Sage offers two solutions: Sage Intacct and Sage 50 cloud.

Sage 50

Sage 50 is a software focused on the needs of small businesses and accountants. It has 5 major capabilities:

  • cash flow and invoicing (Figure 2), which:
    • allows customization of views by date or transaction types (invoices & more)
    • enables sending invoices to multiple customers at once
  • payments and banking
  • inventory management
  • job and project costing
  • reporting

Figure 2: Sage 50 cash flow and invoicing dashboard.2 

Sage 50 also offers 3 add-ons:

  • Payment processing solutions: Allows real-time control on internal and external payment sources.
  • eFile: Offers eFile forms and payments from Sage 50.
  • Checks and forms: Enables ordering custom checks and forms.

Sage Intacct

Sage Intacct is a cloud accounting and ERP solution. As the figure below suggests, Intacct is preferred by mid-market and enterprises.

Figure 3. Sage Intacct user companies size scale. Source: Gartner3 

Sage Intacct emphasizes AI while explaining its features. Some AI integrated solutions include:

  • Intacct can extract data from uploaded emails or AP bills and create drafts for the approval process.
  • The platform identifies data regarding vendors, amount, dates, and line items.
  • Intacct can detect duplicate invoices and flag them which prevents payment errors.

Intacct also offers embedded & integrated solutions. You can:

Figure 4: Purchasing information dashboard. Source: Sage.4

Other integrations are also offered by Sage.5

Other features & capabilities

Apart from the key features mentioned above, Sage AP automation software offers additional features:

  • Users can identify aged creditors and get reports on credits on a single dashboard (Figure 5).
  • Users can send returns or cancel purchases. In such cases, users also can create credit notes.
  • Intacct automates pulling transactions daily.
  • Invoice capturing and matching in accordance with purchases and expenses is automated by the platform.
  • Users can set bank rules.

Figure 5: Purchasing operations and AP dashboard. Source:6

Native integration add-ons

Sponsored: Using native integration add-ons such as Pairsoft that are built specifically to work within the existing ERP system can make AP automation process easier. With connection through APIs, you can also build a workflow between different SaaS applications with data flow in your ERP.

Apart from native add-on integration, Pairsoft further offers features to address Sage’s shortcomings, including:

  • A built-in document management system
  • Encrypted and integrated database for invoices and related documents
  • OCR invoice capturing
  • Searching features

Pros of Sage AP

All-in-one solution: Along with other accounting processes, Sage Intacct offers automation in the entire AP process.

Figure 7: Sage Intacct review. Source:7

Cloud-based: 150+ users from different review platforms praised that Sage is a cloud based solution, making it accessible.

Figure 8. Sage Intacct review. Source:8

For overall pros, see Figure 9:

Figure 9. Sage Intacct overall pros. Source:9

Sage AP automation cons

Learning curve: It can be hard to navigate through Sage Intacct. 200+ users underlined that especially at the beginning the learning curve is high.10 

PO approval: Users criticize that in the purchasing module regular users approve purchase orders/invoices do not exist (Figure 10).

Figure 10. Sage Intacct review. Source:11 

Navigation within the platform can be hard. Users point out that in some cases it can be confusing to navigate in the applications menu regarding AP (Figure 11).

Figure 11. Sage Intacct review. Source:12 

For overall cons, see Figure 12:

Figure 12: Sage Intacct overall cons 13 

Pricing

Sage 50

Package$/month
Pro Accounting$59/user
Premium Accounting$97/user
$222 for 5 users
Quantum Accounting$160/user
$409 for 10 users
Pro Accounting with Payroll$83 for 1-10 users*
$99 for 16-30 users
Premium Accounting with Payroll$114**
  • *Range of employee numbers
  • **With payroll bundle, premium accounting offers 15 different prices.14

Sage Intacct

With free trial, Sage Intacct offers customized pricing models. See Figure 6:

Figure 6. Sage Intacct pricing. Source:15

Case studies of Sage AP automation

Benchmark

Benchmark with a workforce of 10.000+ handles its finances across more than 50 properties and 80 different units. Around 350 of its employees, including a small corporate finance team of five, managers of various departments, and staff at each property, used Sage Intacct for their financial management. At the property level, Benchmark saved about $800k annually by cutting down on manual tasks related to accounts payable. They adapted online invoice approvals, digital signatures, reduced paper use, and saved the equivalent of half a full-time employee’s work across 40 properties. This adds up to 20 full-time employees at the property level who have been shifted to more strategic roles.16

Cambio Communities

There were so many contractors involved in each project of Cambio. Thus, the financial team had to handle 100 invoices daily, or about 1500 every month. It was important to pay these contractors and suppliers quickly to keep a good working relationship with them. They also needed a system that could automatically handle all their financial tasks, including paying bills, especially since they expect to have many more community projects. Sage Intacct AP provided Cambio with a full system for managing these payments. It takes over a lot of the work that used to be done manually such as sorting invoices, paying contractors, and recording transactions. This saves the AP team a lot of time, so they can help with other important business tasks.17

Brookfield

Brookfield’s Public Securities Group changed how it handles paying bills by using Sage Intacct and American Express. This cut the time the team needed to get approvals, send checks for signing, and make payments to suppliers in half. They also managed to clear more than 100 pending invoices. With Sage Intacct, the entire accounts payable process was automated. Kyle, president of finance, explains that before, they were overwhelmed with unpaid invoices waiting to be checked and paid, often requiring the team to work extra hours. With Sage Intacct, they work much more efficiently and can quickly answer questions about payments, like how much was paid to a specific supplier last year, in five minutes instead of 30.18

Further reading

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Cem Dilmegani
Principal Analyst
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Burak Ceylan
Burak is an Industry Analyst in AIMultiple. He received his Masters' degree in Political Science from Middle East Technical University. He has background in researching location-based platforms.

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