Over one third of local authorities looking to invest in e-invoicing

Research conducted by iGov has found that 39 per cent of local authorities are seriously considering investing in e-invoicing within the next year. 

The survey was orchestrated on behalf of Basware UK, the Local Government Association (LGA), the Department of Business Innovation and Skills, and the UK National e-Invoicing Forum, iGov. The report found that 74 per cent of public sector professionals believe e-invoicing increases the number of payments made on time. 

In addition, the data revealed that 61 per cent of public sector workers think it increases visibility of the workflow process and 44 per cent are confident it will improve supplier relationships. 

The study revealed that the most common method of invoicing is PDF email, employed by 63 per cent of local authorities. The use of this technique usually results in processes such as printing or scanning, which could be removed by e-invoicing. 

The government is encouraging councils to adopt the method of e-invoicing with the Enterprise Bill and Prompt Payment Code. 

However, the survey also found that 40 per cent of organisations are prevented from using such a system due to lack of resources. 

Amabel Grant, VP Network Services and UK MD, at Basware, said: “The public sector is starting to address late payments culture and move towards paperless systems but more needs to be done to help them become fully electronic. There is a perception in the public sector that e-invoicing is costly and difficult to implement. It is clear that the sector wishes to implement e-invoicing and punitive measures around late payment have provided a more compelling reason to do so.

“E-invoicing provides an exciting opportunity for local authorities to streamline their invoicing systems and make progress towards the EU’s 2020 vision for paperless public administration. With the Prompt Payment Code coming into force and the Enterprise Bill passing through Parliament, now is an ideal time for the government to help local authorities step up to e-invoicing.”