Being a business in today’s society is tough and we’re not going to sugar-coat that fact. This means that businesses need to maximize their efficiencies across the board in order to not only operate day-by-day, but to compete, grow, and have a solid cash flow.
Technology is how businesses are going to achieve these efficiencies and innovative companies are changing the way business owners and leaders are looking at their cash management systems. New options bring the world of cash management online and their impressive cloud-based platform brings procurement, invoicing, expense tracking, payments, spend analysis, and contract management (among other things) all together on a single software.
If a business is not ready to jump in headfirst and totally overhaul its business management system, adding just one of these applications has the potential to have immediate positive effects. We’re going to zoom in on virtual cards as an example.
Virtual cards are also known as vCards or “virtual credit cards” AKA VCCs. These are online, automated, and temporary credit cards. VCCs are single-use, disposable credit card numbers that can be used to make contactless payments. No physical card is needed, and this drastically reduces the risk of credit card fraud, incorrect payments, and frivolous spending.
For businesses, virtual cards are changing the way companies work with one-time suppliers and are proving to save valuable time, effort, and money in the short and long term. All of this is beneficial to the larger company as a whole and also the goods and services providers that the company partners with.
No More Physical Cards
Virtual cards through an online business management system software are part of what allows a company to have a “controlled invoice” process. They are directly connected to a payment process that has been pre-setup and pre-approved to pay a specific amount attached to an invoice or purchase order.
Card numbers are automatically generated and authorized for single-use payment for a specific supplier and for a specific amount. This allows for an accurate, seamless, and simple payment process that is extremely efficient, already approved, and unbelievably secure. Transactions are confirmed via a secure email system and when transactions have been completed, the online business management system even automatically reconciles the processed payment.
This all means no more submitting physical cards for payments and no more sharing of the same credit card number across multiple vendors. There are also no more unnecessary processing steps needed to check the spending guidelines, approve a transaction, complete a transaction, wait for the receipt, and then manually update a spending tracker and reconcile the payment in a greater financial database.
The world of physical checks for business payments can hopefully become obsolete with things like virtual credit cards. Physical cards are in the same boat as unnecessary physical paper invoices and many in the space are trying to open our eyes to the possibilities that come along with automating systems and eliminating wasteful business habits that are simply archaic.
Automate, Automate, Automate
Automation is the name of the game. Business leaders who are understanding the advantages of more effective and more efficient ways to automate their spending are freeing up their staff to focus on more strategic work which will push their company forward.
Through virtual credit cards, financial departments can set pre-approved card spending specifications electronically. They do not need to worry about having dozens of physical company cards floating around or micro-managing every single time a credit card transaction needs to happen across the company (or world). By setting clear guidelines through the software program, purchase requests are completed faster, approvals are automatic and not stuck in a bottleneck, and the completion of payment is also built right in.
Companies that have switched to virtual credit card systems have seen huge cuts in their invoice processing time and have gained a new vantage point into company spending. Financial departments like how virtual credit cards still allow for a level of control and strict budgeting guidelines, but they do not have to waste time with continual onboarding. Financial teams used to have to constantly check and balance employees and new service providers or suppliers each time a credit card was used. With virtual cards, the price is set, already approved, simple to follow, and can be used across the board to make payments.
Think About the Big Picture
Virtual card systems are an important piece of the puzzle, and you can extend this idea to many operations and functions within any business. Automation is valuable in general, there are likely opportunities far beyond virtual cards that could benefit how your business approaches a number of systems and outcomes.
The real key is to never stop learning. Always look at how technology is evolving, and you will continue to find niches (and sometimes major innovations) that benefit your business.