Efficiently handling invoices and implementing methods to reduce errors such as duplicate payments are essential responsibilities for accounts payable departments.
The majority of AP departments have three types of documents they interact with regularly: invoices, purchase orders, and receiving documents, The Accounts Payable Network reports. Although each document has its own set of potential errors, most occur with the receiving document because of a failure to adequately review the contents of shipments.
One practice that can easily result in duplicate payments is paying suppliers from a copy of an invoice, notes the source. Copies should only be used after double-checking the master vendor file to ensure that no one else has already made the payment.
Payment delays can be reduced if vendors send all invoices to the AP department instead of the person who placed the order. Furthermore, after invoices are received they should be entered individually to make them easier to locate.
If for any reason an adjustment to the amount on an invoice needs to be made, AP departments should send vendors an official letter explaining the change.