AP Best Practices | Policies

Too often, AP departments do things the same way, year after year, assuming that they are working to their maximum capacity and using the best available methods. 

But a study or audit of your AP invoicing cycle—including work inside the department and the flow of information to and from other departments and companies—can reveal opportunities for improvement.

Is there a process improvement that you'd like to propose? Before approaching management with your idea, you need to gather information about the potential benefits and challenges surrounding implementation. This is where TAPN's Project Proposal Report Template comes in.

The Accounts Payable Network's policy manual templates are designed to help you build an accounts payable policy manual. The starting place for the AP Policy Manual Tool Kit is the Table of Contents, which lists the policies and forms available for development of your AP Manual.

Search - AP Best Practices | Policies

Jul 25, 2014

Analyze Your AP Processes Carefully

Too often, AP departments do things the same way, year after year, assuming that they are working to their maximum capacity and using the best available methods. But a study or audit of your AP invoicing cycle—including work inside the department and the flow of information to and from other departments and companies—can reveal opportunities for improvement.
Feb 18, 2014

The Fiscal Year-End Checklist for Accounts Payable

This twenty point checklist assists Accounts Payable Professionals with the fiscal year-end closing process.
Feb 01, 2014

The Policy Templates

Go straight to The AP Network’s AP Policy Templates by clicking on the links below: 1099 Reporting Policy This template provides a sample 1099 Reporting Policy. Capital Expenditure Policy This template provides an example of an AP Capital Expenditure Policy Check Disbursement Policy This template provides an example of an AP Check Disbursement Policy. Credits & Returns Policy This template…
Feb 01, 2014

Build an AP Policies Manual with Help from The AP Network

Without well-established policies, a company is risking a much greater likelihood of mistakes, inefficiency, and even fraud. The Accounts Payable Network has developed a host of best practice policy templates to assist members in developing their own Accounts Payable Policy Manual.
Feb 01, 2014

AP Policy Manual Tool Kit: Start Here

The Accounts Payable Network's policy manual templates are designed to help you build an accounts payable policy manual. The starting place for the AP Policy Manual Tool Kit is the Table of Contents, which lists the policies and forms available for development of your AP Manual.
Feb 01, 2014

Common Payment Terms

"Payment terms" refers to the provisions the buyer and seller have agreed upon to get the goods paid for. Of course, payment terms and conditions must be negotiated up front and agreed upon by both parties. And it only makes sense that sellers create incentives to get their money faster, and buyers reserve rights to hold on to their money as long as possible. With so much on the line, it helps to…
Feb 01, 2014

Start Your Improvement Project Right - Project Proposal Report

Is there a process improvement that you'd like to propose? Before approaching management with your idea, you need to gather information about the potential benefits and challenges surrounding implementation. This is where TAPN's Project Proposal Report Template comes in.
Feb 01, 2014

Budgeting for Success - Project Plan Budget

Initiating a new accounts payable project involves a significant financial decision. TAPN's Project Plan Budget Template will help you organize all of your project's costs and expected savings so that you can demonstrate clearly to management how much your project will cost and how long it should take to earn a return on investment.
Feb 01, 2014

Avoid the Wrong Choice: RFP Scorecard

Whether you are implementing a new piece of automation technology, outsourcing all or a portion of your department, or rolling out any number of accounts payable process improvements, the project's success hinges on the vendor you choose.
Feb 01, 2014

Putting Your Procedures on Paper – AP Policy Manual Templates

Successful business practices don't happen by accident. They are the result of detailed, written policies and procedures. The Accounts Payable Network's Policy Manual Templates are perfect for organizations that want to create written documentation of their accounts payable policies.
Feb 01, 2014

Close the Books without Closing Down the Department

After weeks of struggling to keep up with invoices, expense reports, vendor file maintenance, and all the other responsibilities of running an accounts payable department, the end of the month comes and you have to close the books. Pulling all this together without letting your other work slide means strictly adhering to a month-end policy, effectively managing your staff resources, and fully…
Feb 01, 2014

Make Security Mission-Critical

Payroll and HR departments work behind closed doors with locked filing cabinets and exclusive printers and fax machines. AP, on the other hand, generally works in the open–with employees from other departments able to access accounts payable files and equipment. 
Feb 01, 2014

Mail Call Policies

Call it a tub, tote, bucket, or bin, that whitish plastic thing full of invoices that the Post Office drops off signals the beginning of a series of tasks–-tasks that are required to get the invoices out of the bin and into your AP process.
Feb 01, 2014

Disaster Recovery and AP: Reducing the Risk in a Paper-Based System

A chilling observation from Disaster Recovery Planning (disaster-recovery-planning.org) reveals that “a company that is denied access to mission-critical data for more than 48 hours will be out of business within one year.”
Jan 31, 2014

Using 2 Monitors to Speed AP Research, Imaging, & Chart of Accounts Reference

In the past few years, people have been scrambling to get a bigger computer monitor. Big monitors are great, but if you want to gain the most efficiency in accounts payable, make the move to two monitors. And while you are adding monitors—make them big ones!
Jan 31, 2014

Strong Policies Help Deter T&E Fraud

A strong, well-publicized, and enforced T&E policy helps to avoid misunderstandings by travelers. It is the best tool to help AP in its fight against T&E fraud.
Jan 31, 2014

12 Steps to a Better AP Policies & Procedures Manual

Whether it’s invoice processing, p-cards, or employee expense reimbursements,the use of formal policies and procedures in the form of a manual is absolutely essential—not only from a procedural standpoint, but from one of control.
Jan 31, 2014

As Fraud Proliferates, Internal Controls Become a Priority

Alan Wenk, corporate accounts payable manager at the Performance Contracting Group in Lenexa, Kansas, believes that AP professionals can sometimes lose sight of the “whys and wherefores” of internal controls. 
Jan 31, 2014

Four Opportunities to Gain Control and Cut T&E Costs

In addition to preventing the loss of revenue that results when fraud occurs, developing explicit T&E policies and strict, consistent enforcement tools are critical to reducing T&E costs.
Jan 31, 2014

Get Your Policies & Procedures In Order, SOX or No SOX!

Many accounts payable departments do a great job of creating a policies and procedures manual. But even the best AP managers fall behind on keeping that manual up to date. In many cases, their policies and procedures manuals are a haphazard collection of notes and cheat sheets that have been passed from one AP staffer to another over the years.
Jan 31, 2014

Five Steps to Take to Avoid Paying the Wrong Vendor

A common mistake in accounts payable departments is paying the wrong vendor. Sometimes it happens because vendors have similar names. Other times it happens simply because AP staffers are human and humans make mistakes.
Jan 31, 2014

With a Focus on Reengineering, MGM Resorts Achieves Measurable Process Improveme

Kathy Sharp, Executive Director of Accounts Payable for MGM Resorts International in Las Vegas, recently embarked on a quest to improve invoice processing and other processes in AP. “Our AP department had been doing things the same way for many years,” says Sharp. “We knew that there had to be a better way to process our payables documents.”
Jan 31, 2014

Internal Controls: Make This Your AP Department Motto: 'Our Lips are Sealed'

AP is privy to a great deal of information that should not be shared. For example, the backup documents we require to pay many invoices—especially internally-generated invoices—are chock full of information that must be kept confidential. Here are five areas in which your organization can get in trouble if your AP staffers fail to keep private information to themselves.
Jan 31, 2014

AP Fraud Generally Indicates a Failure to Implement Internal Controls

Every time you see a headline about an employee who has stolen thousands of dollars from an employer, it invariably involves a so-called “trusted” employee who has been given entirely too much control over the AP process.
Jan 31, 2014

Records Retention: AP Pros Speak of Their Challenges and Solutions

AP departments need to have special protocols for document handling to enable them to comply with state or federal regulations. Some protocols may vary to conform to industry standards or to adhere to internal rules of corporate governance. However, there are certain general practices and "rules of thumb" that most AP operations can follow.
Jan 31, 2014

Rethinking Security Around ACH Information

As the number of ACH payments increases, so does ACH fraud—even though such fraud is less prevalent than with payments made via check.
 

This material is protected by copyright law. Copyright © 2002-2014 Diversified Business Communications. No part of the materials including articles, files, graphics, and logos, available in this Web site may be copied, photocopied, reproduced, translated or reduced to any electronic medium or machine-readable form, in whole or in part, without prior written consent. Distribution for commercial purposes is prohibited.