Send E-Invoices and E-Bills from your Internet bank
The Hal E-Invoices solution for distribution of e-invoices and e-bills uses your electronic bank as a safe communication channel. Using already established Internet banking channels for sending and receiving e-invoices and e-bills has many benefits for both parties involved, the issuer and the recipient. Upgrading Internet banking with an e-invoicing and e-billing system saves time and money for businesses and generates new revenue for banks.On the issuing side, businesses save money on account of more efficient distribution of e-invoices or e-bills and automatic reconciliation of payments received against issued e-invoices or e-bills. Corporate customers as recipients can directly import received structured e-invoices into their back-end information systems. Retail customers receive e-bills with requests for payment into their Internet bank or their mobile, where they can be paid anytime, anywhere and with just one click. The issuer on the other hand receives accurate incoming payment data in electronic version, which makes it easy to reconcile the payment against the issued invoice/bill and lowers costs of invoice distribution.
Challenge: »30,000 invoices a year means that more than 270,000 various data items have to be manually entered into our information system, «
Benefits and project results:
Challenge: »how to set up an efficient system for issuing e-invoices and e-bills«
Benefits and project results:
CHALLENGE: Adria Mobil is one of Europe's largest producers of holiday caravans and motorhomes. The company is a large exporter, but most of its suppliers are based in Slovenia. In all, Adria Mobil receives from its suppliers more than 30,000 invoices a year, nearly half of which come from eleven of its biggest suppliers. »30,000 invoices a year means that more than 270,000 various data items have to be manu-ally entered into our information system,« explained Mira Šetina, Director of Controlling and Informatics. Receiving this data in electronic form, however, would deliver huge savings. So how did Adria Mobil – with a small initial investment – introduce a system to receive electronic invoices from their suppliers and at the same time manage to set up secure archiving?
SOLUTION: Looking to avoid making large investments in opening up additional non-standard connections with their suppliers, Adria Mobil decided to use Internet banking channels instead, channels that are regularly used for payment transactions by more than 80 percent of Slovenian businesses as well as by all its major suppliers. In conjunction with the Abanka Vipa bank, Adria Mobil and all its major suppliers upgraded their Internet banking solution so that it can now also be used for sending and rece-iving e-invoices. »In the pilot stage of the project, which took no more than three months to complete, three suppliers were included in the e-invoice exchange process at first, others were added as we went along. In the four months since the end of the pilot stage we've included in the system most of our major suppliers, from which we receive nearly 50 percent of all invoices on a yearly basis,« said Mira Šetina. The process is as follows: suppliers create an e-invoice in the selected format, import it into their Internet banking application, at which point it is also digitally signed, and then send it from there to Adria Mobil. At Adria Mobil, the data is exported from the Internet banking solution and, without any unneces-sary manual intervention, uploaded into the company's information system. Inside the information system the payment of the invoice is then authorized by a competent person. Following authorization, information system users can generate from the e-invoice a payment order to be imported back into the Internet banking application. This eliminates the need for time-consuming and error-prone retyping of data by hand. Cleared e-invoices are stored in an in-house electronic archive, which significantly reduces the costs associated with document storage and retrieval. The success of the project and the tangible benefits gained by Adria Mobil also encouraged two of Adria Mobil's suppliers, Avto Triglav and Elektronabava, to make arrangements with their suppliers to receive e-invoices through Internet banking channels.
CHALLENGE: In cooperation with its clients, Informatika developed comprehensive information support for the needs of four major Slovenian public electricity distribution utilities. An integral part of the comprehensive system is a subsystem for metering and tracking electricity consumption by end users, comprising more than 100,000 corporate consumers and more than 800,000 households (retail consu-mers). »Given such a high volume of electricity invoices and bills sent to consumers each month, having a streamlined and fully optimized invoicing and billing process in place is crucial. Proprietary systems for generating, issuing and sending e-invoices and e-bills can be a very high-cost investment. So the challenge we faced was how to set up an efficient system for issuing e-invoices and e-bills, one that would simplify distribution processes and lower the associated costs,« explained Franci Klauzner, Advisor to the Development Division Head.
SOLUTION: After looking at a number of options, Informatika decided on the Internet banking infrastructure it was already familiar with, as were most of the companies in Slovenia. Internet banking is used by as many as 80 percent of Slovenian businesses, all of which are also consumers of electricity. Internet banking is also used by households, notably in a smaller percentage but in larger numbers compared to commercial and industrial users. The existing secure and stable Internet banking channels can be used for sending electronic invoices as well. »The infrastructure is already there and users are familiar with it. This is a significant time saver, and e-invoicing and e-billing is easier to implement. What's more, it's the banks, not us, that take care of the Internet banking infrastructure,« said Franci Klauzner. To people who do not use online banking but would still like to receive electricity bills in electronic format, Informatika offers its »eStoritve« online portal, where users can view and add points of consumption, among others. Informatika decided on sending e-invoices and e-bills through Internet banking channels for a number of other reasons as well. Before an invoice or a bill in electronic form can be sent, confirmation must be obtained from the recipient. Confirmation for receiving e-invoices and e-bills can be given on Informatika's portal or in the Internet banking application. The process of sending an e-invoice or an e-bill is as follows: a digitally signed e-invoice or e-bill in the selected format is created in Informatika's back-end environment; it is then converted into a user-friendly e-invoice or e-bill file format (PDF in this case) and imported into the Internet banking system, which has a built-in digital signature functionality for safe and secure communication. The e-invoice is delivered to the recipient's Internet banking application, and from there corporate users can import it into their company's information system. All recipients – corporate and retail consumers – can generate a payment order directly from the e-invoice or e-bill inside their Internet banking application. In this way, recipients of e-invoices and e-bills avoid the need for time-consuming and error-prone retyping of data, and the recipient of the payment gets accurate incoming payment data. Correct and accurate data, such as the 13-digit reference number and the payment amount, are crucial for reconciling payments received against invoices issued (clearing of issued invoiced). »Errors typically occurring in manual retyping result in additional costs in the invoice clearing stage. With e-invoices and e-bills sent through an Internet banking system, there is no such problem,« underlined Franci Klauzner. E-invoices and e-bills, like conventional printed invoices and bills, need to be archived. The e-banking system can be configured to automatically send issuer's e-invoices and e-bills into secure storage as soon as they are sent out. The e-invoices and e-bills issued by Informatika through the Internet banking system are already digitally signed; all the system does next is attach a digital time-stamp to them.
Since the proven and safe e-banking infrastructure is already in place and widespread, you avoid spending money on new, non-standard systems. The same goes for costs associated with employee training: employees are already familiar with the Internet banking application because they use it on a daily basis. The Hal E-Invoices solution makes it possible for Internet banking users to exchange e-invoices and e-bills even if the issuer and the recipient have bank accounts at different banks
On the receiving end, there is no need to manually input the invoice data into the information system. With most recipients using advanced information systems (SAP, MS Dynamics-Navision, Sage ERP, Oracle EBS etc.), the information system is already linked to the Internet banking application, so im-porting e-invoice or e-bill data into the system is really simple and straightforward.
An e-invoice or e-bill as the basis for subsequent payment has to contain all the information needed to create a payment order so that the recipient can generate a payment order in a single click. This eliminates the need for time-consuming and error-prone manual retyping of data, say the reference number, into a payment order. This applies to all consumers: companies as well as households who receive their e-invoices or e-bills for (monthly) obligations directly into their Internet banking solution.
There are many different standards for e-invoices and e-bills. With Hal E-Invoices, infrastructure docu-ments are distributed inside electronic envelopes (e-envelope), so for the system it is irrelevant what standard e-invoices or e-bills are prepared in. It is up to the sending and receiving partners to decide in what standard e-invoices are exchanged.
Because a recipient creates a payment order based on the data from the issued e-invoice or e-bill, the payment order data are exactly the same as those specified by the issuer of an invoice or bill. The issuer receives accurate incoming payment data (reference number etc.) when a credit transaction is recorded, making it easy to reconcile the payment against the issued invoice or bill. Extra costs caused by error-prone manual entry of data are avoided.
E-invoices and e-bills, like conventional printed invoices and bills, need to be archived. Both the issuer and the recipient have the possibility to sign up for e-invoice and e-bill storage straight from their In-ternet banking application. Since e-invoices and e-bills issued from inside an Internet banking system are already digitally signed, all the system does is attach a digital time-stamp. By choosing a convenient storage, the issuer and the recipient have no more worries about where and how to keep e-invoices and e-bills over a longer period of time. For more information contact Mikrocop at telephone number +386 (0)1 587 42 80, their email address email@example.com or visit their website.