Skip to main content Skip to Footer

LATEST THINKING


Accenture transaction compliance and analytics tool

Reducing improper payments for federal agencies.

Overview

Timely, accurate vendor invoice payments are always a challenge. But for many companies and federal agencies, overpayments, data errors and inconsistent procure-to-pay processes are a constant reality and a multi-million-dollar concern. Post-payment audits (most organizations' first and only recourse) help somewhat. But a far better solution is to prevent payment errors and overpayments before they occur.

The Accenture Transaction Compliance & Analytics Tool is specifically designed to prevent errors and overpayments. The tool monitors purchasing and payables transactions using sophisticated algorithms beyond those of even advanced ERP or legacy systems solutions. This is a radical change in finance and accounting management—an opportunity for companies to move from a cyclical, post-payment audit routine to a prevention-focused environment where errors are identified and corrected before payment is made. The data analytics the tool offers are also invaluable in identifying improvements to the procure-to-pay process.

Background

The Accenture Transaction Compliance & Analytics Tool was developed exclusively to detect high-risk transactions and prevent overpayments and under-recoveries.

Organizations of all sizes confirm that it helps:

  • Ongoing vendor analysis.

  • Improve vendor relationships.

  • Reduce or eradicate duplicate payments.

  • Maximize capture of allowances and discounts.

  • Minimize the complexity (and often the need for) post-payment audits.

  • Significantly reduce the time and cost of recovering lost profits and incorrect payments.

The Accenture Transaction Compliance & Analytics Tool is flexible and designed to integrate easily with any enterprise resource planning or supply chain environment. During operation, it receives uploaded accounts payable data on a regular basis, including open payables items (copied and automatically uploaded from the ERP system).

The transaction and analytics tool is a rule-based system that finds problem transactions and promptly sends "warnings" (generated before a suspect payment is made) or "notifications" (generated after a suspect payment has been made).

Analysis

The Accenture Transaction Compliance & Analytics Tool has four comprehensive modules:

  • Improper Payments identifies potential or already executed duplicate or erroneous payments using sophisticated algorithms. Users customize and define search criteria associated with duplicate or improperly executed payments. Completed and scheduled payments that match these criteria are then flagged as exceptions that require further action. Users of the system can drill down into accounts payable or payment history data to further isolate the problem.

  • Erroneous Payment compiles pre-payment and disbursement history data to identify potential payments that were made beyond or below actual invoice amounts by matching on multiple fields (based on user-determined criteria). The total amounts of disbursements are then accumulated to determine if there is an overpayment of the invoice gross amount.

  • Non-Compliant Payments identifies potential non-compliance and provides fraudulent activity analytics. This module specializes in the identification of potential fraudulent activity by isolating suspicious exceptions based on rule-based business logic. Suspicious activity is flagged if an invoice input date was entered after the disbursement effective date or if an invoice input date is before the invoice is received.

  • True Positive Manager effectively manages exceptions—compiling detailed exception history, electronic routing of exceptions to technicians and efficient status monitoring of all ongoing exceptions through to final settlement.

Recommendations

The Accenture Transaction Compliance & Analytics Tool can help move organizations from a reactive environment, where post-payment audits occur every few years, to a proactive, prevention-focused environment, where errors are identified and corrected before payments are made.

This unique tool represents a new way to build a modern procure-to-pay operation. Its core capabilities — preventing as well as spotting errors, analyzing recurring payment errors, and collaborating more closely with suppliers — are designed to increase control and enable a more accurate and efficient procurement operation. Those same capabilities are also pillars of high performance.