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Local government has an important role to play in the national rollout of the Peppol framework and e-invoicing standard. By adopting Peppol and digitising their procure-to-pay processes, councils stand to benefit from significant efficiency gains and costs savings while their suppliers enjoy on-time payments.

How to get on PEPPOL?

Typically, a council needs to connect their Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system to the Peppol network to receive and process e-invoices. This may involve:

  1. Engaging an accredited Peppol access point service provider,
  2. Upgrading to the ERP’s SaaS platform, and
  3. Adding new functionality to process the Peppol data.

For many councils though, this system upgrade and integration work may be off-putting, with fears that it may become a time-consuming and expensive process. There is another option though – adding on a Peppol-ready application, such as RapidAP.

AP automation and Peppol access point

RapidAP is connected to the Peppol network, allowing users to receive and process e-invoices. The solution integrates easily with a council’s ERP – whether that’s Civica, TechnologyOne or another system – transforming the data to the input the system requires for processing.

As a result, councils can become Peppol-ready without needing to upgrade or change their system or carry out significant integration or change management work. Further, the solution can capture and process data from emailed invoices, removing the need for manual processes in accounts payable.

This is a significant value-add because councils will likely continue to receive PDF and paper invoices for some years to come. Therefore, it makes sense to digitise and automate the whole accounts payable function, rather than maintain manual processes for suppliers that are not yet ready to e-invoice.

Running two sets of processes simultaneously adds unnecessary complexity, holding councils back from experiencing the full benefit of Peppol. An AP automation solution can apply the same validation rules to all accounts payable, whether they come into council via the Peppol network, over email, or by postal service.  

What RapidAP offers councils

RapidAP is a highly configurable out-of-the-box solution. Built to offer best practice accounts payable automation to public and private sector organisations with varied needs, the solution is cost-effective, quick to implement, future-proof, and designed with useability in mind.

Its features include:

  • Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology to extract and process data from PDF and other file types that suppliers have emailed through.

 

  • Embedded security protocols with look ups to validate that the invoice is not a duplicate and the supplier is a legitimate business and entitled to claim GST if included in the price.

 

  • Integrated Peppol access point so that councils can receive Peppol e-invoices, sending the data to the ERP in the input it requires for downstream processing.

 

  • Document library storing every invoice sent to council, providing visibility across the invoice lifecycle, and logging a full audit history of every interaction with a payable.

 

  • Dashboards with personalised invoice processing and exception management tasks, as well as display charts showcasing accounts payable performance.

 

  • Workflow automation, administering the end-to-end invoice approval process or fulfilling specific tasks, as required by the council, to complement the functionality of the ERP.

Making things easy

To make purchasing AP automation quicker and easier for councils, it’s now possible to engage Efficiency Leaders through Local Buy. As a supplier for ICT Solutions and Services, Efficiency Leaders has already satisfied many of the compliance requirements for local government procurement.

As a result, councils and other entities using Local Buy can now engage us through a more streamlined Request for Quote process rather than through an Open Tender. This model helps to:

  • Reduce risk
  • Save time
  • Save money
  • Improve governance

Our aim is to help local government manage their Peppol e-invoices and automate accounts payable in the most compliant, cost-effective, and efficient way possible.

RapidAP brings compliance, visibility, and dependability to accounts payable; suppliers are paid on time and councils gain significant efficiencies and cost savings in invoice processing. Undoubtedly, council funds are better spent on service delivery to ratepayers than on back-office processes.

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