BlackLine Blog

April 04, 2022

Four Reasons to Get AR Moving to a Different Beat in Your Business

Intelligent Automation
2 Minute Read

BlackLine Magazine

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Everyone does AR, right?

It’s one of those necessary, intrinsic parts of your business. Always there, always producing, always an important part of finance.

But can it be more than that somehow? Not just the back office function that’s integral, if too often overlooked, despite its potential. And instead, a fundamental part of digital transformation in finance, a lever that unlocks a load of beneficial finance outcomes, and a strategic contributor at the very highest level of your business.

We think so—it all starts with getting AR moving to a different beat.

What we mean by that is fundamentally changing the role of AR within your business. Reframing it as a place that informs big decisions about how you approach cash flow, financial flexibility, and revenue growth. Making it a more efficient, smooth, and effective operation through automation and modernization. And utilizing the data housed there in smarter ways.

So, here are a few reasons to get started. With a one, two, three, four:

1. Bring Flex into Finance

You don’t need us to remind you that the past two years have caused a lot of problems for businesses. One of the challenges is felt in the tightening of financial options when you need to make decisions around cash flow to cope with periods of uncertainty and change.

Resilience is vital today. You’ll get there through greater flexibility, optimizing workflows, quickly assessing how cash is best utilized according to the situation in front of you, and creating new credit and risk policies as and when you need them.

If your AR isn’t doing this right now, it’s a key reason to shake things up.

2. Better Utilize Finance Data

AR is a bustling hub of data about your customers, how they pay, and your financial operations. But, as with all data, it’s only as useful as you make it. Put simply—legacy, heavily manual AR practices aren’t conducive to effective data utilization.

Introducing automation into AR enables you to make more of sales and payment performance data, customer payment trends, and cash flow. The insight you can derive from this can inform decision making at every level of your business, as well as helping you to identify potential growth within your existing customer base.

3. Turn Manual into Value

Part of the transition from AR being back office to front foot is making the whole operation a lot slicker and smarter. As things stand, yours may well be one of the many businesses with highly manual AR processes. That means it’s likely you experience a lot of unnecessary process errors and duplicated effort.

One of the key benefits of automation in general is being able to say goodbye to all that. Headline stats will tell you that you can cut around 85% of manual work in AR. But the real value of that is being able to redeploy experienced AR heads on work that contributes to improved cash flow, better decision making, and flexibility.

4. Realize the Potential of AR

Every area of your business is transforming in some way, no doubt with technology at its core. AR shouldn’t be any different—the reason for that is the latent potential that exists in it.

As things stand, you might be getting some good results with your existing AR function, without any advanced digital solutions. So, ask yourself, “what does great look like?”

True intelligence that helps you understand payments in real-time? The ability to analyze trends and use them for finance forecasting long into the future? A greater capacity to manage and mitigate financial risk?

It’s all on the table. And none of it is as far away as you might think, due to the fast start, quick results nature of leading solutions. It starts with bringing AR transformation into step with other business areas.

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Learn More About Automating AR

Moving to a different beat is all about a fresh approach to AR. Bringing an end to its perception as back office and functional and realizing its true value to your entire business.

Learn more about the benefits of moving to a different beat with BlackLine in our new eBook AR Automation: Get Your Team Moving to a Different Beat.

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