ApprovalMax and Xero Approval Workflows

What problem is ApprovalMax solving?

One of the headaches we have seen occur in recent times in Xero is the lack of flexibility around Xero user permissions.  This becomes particularly relevant when you want to provide users with access to Accounts Payable to raise Purchase Orders for example.  You can’t just give them access to Purchase Orders in Xero.  Giving someone access to Purchases in Xero means they can see all aspects of purchases including contacts that have had money paid to them.  This means if a Director has ever been repaid from a Director Loan or when you pay staff wages and they are set up as an individual contact in Xero users with Purchases access can see all that good stuff.  Without having access to Xero Payroll they can still work out who takes home what.

One of the other biggest complaints especially with growing companies is the lack of Approval/Workflow functionality built within Xero Purchases.  This is problematic if you have multiple people involved in your purchasing process and want to have different levels of authority.  You simply can’t do that within Xero.  This is the problem that ApprovalMax looks to solve.  ApprovalMax creates approval workflows for Xero cloud accounting software without having to give access to Xero.

What is ApprovalMax?

ApprovalMax is an app that integrates with your Xero accounting software to improve your internal financial controls around spend management.  It helps you to establish and manage financial controls around purchase orders and purchase invoices ensuring that the right people within your organisation are ordering goods and services in line with the agreed company authorisation limits.  It will help you reduce risk and reduce costs.  Spend control is vital within an organisation to avoid huge cost implications.  ApprovalMax doesn’t just work for purchases you can also use to to manage your sales invoice process. Check out the document below for the details. approvalmax-for-xero

Who is ApprovalMax for?

ApprovalMax can be used for non-profit and commercial organisations.  ApprovalMax works best where there is segregation of duties (which we always highly recommend).  Don’t allow a disaster within your organisation before implementing a change in process.  If margins and spend control are important to your organisation then ApprovalMax will help you.  ApprovalMax works across many different business needs and industries as listed below:

  • Financial Services Outsourcing – allow remote accounting functions to control the purchasing process
  • Geographically Distributed Businesses – multi-role and multi-step approval processes are not an issue with a cloud based solution
  • Compliance Control – minimal paperwork and reduced human error along with approval decision reporting
  • Fraud Prevention – track and review deviations from PO process
  • E2E Purchasing Automation – create an end to end purchasing solution using ApprovalMax covering PO creation, PO approval, PO submission to suppliers, matching of PO with supplier bills and bill authorisation
  • Everyday Approvals – use ApprovalMax for non-accounting processes such as holiday, travel etc

How is ApprovalMax different to Xero?

ApprovalMax extends Xero with fully digital processes for efficient spend and revenue management. It provides multi-role and multi-tiered approval workflows for Bills, Purchase Orders, Credit Notes, Sales Invoices, and enables Purchase Order creation and approval outside of Xero. It facilitates x-way matching of Bills and POs, and supports budgeting control.

ApprovalMax complements Xero with complex approval workflows that enable setting up rule-based conditional, sequential, and parallel approvals as well as varying authorisation levels. It is enforced that each Bill is reviewed and approved in accordance with company policies. Approvers receive all the related information, either in the Bill fields or as attachments. There is no need to access Xero for Bill approval.  This means that you no longer need to give access to Xero for people to approve purchases.  They can be kept completely out of your accounting software.

ApprovalMax and ReceiptBank?

If you are using a data extraction tool for purchase bills such as Receipt Bank this can be integrated into the solution from ApprovalMax.  There is no need to stop using your data extraction product as this has been factored into the way ApprovalMax and Xero work together.  In fact the solution is much more robust.  You would add items to Receipt Bank in the normal way you currently do but the documents would be submitted to ApprovalMax for matching against the relevant PO before being marked as Approved in Xero.  This means there is no change to your current process but when making payments to your suppliers you can have comfort that they have been through the additional process of having been checked and matched against the original PO. This opens up the possibility of using Receipt Bank for all bills not just business expenses.

For companies currently using Purchase Orders in Xero you cannot match the bills from Receipt Bank with those in Xero so unfortunately it is not an option if you wish to use the Purchase Order process correctly in Xero.  You may currently be scanning documents and manually adding them to Xero to keep all data together which is time consuming.  As Receipt Bank extracts data, runs rules and auto publishes to Xero it is a much better tool than the human eye so you should now seriously consider swapping out those manual tasks for automated solutions. If you wish to discuss any of the items in this blog please do not hesitate to contact us.

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