The Australian and New Zealand Governments are seeking comment on how electronic invoicing (e-Invoicing) can be best managed in both countries by releasing a public consultation paper.
Deloitte Access Economics estimates Aussie small businesses issue approximately 1.2 billion invoices annually, and that e-Invoicing could result in economy-wide benefits of up to $28 billion over ten years.
“E-Invoicing is an important tool to modernise the way we do business, and increase efficiency and productivity. We have a clear opportunity to realise the benefits of going digital, and that’s why we are committed to supporting this initiative,” Assistant Treasurer Stuart Robert said.
The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell has welcomed Treasury’s public consultation on how e-invoicing arrangements can be best managed, saying it makes small businesses more productive by streamlining payments and improving cash flow.
“The benefits of e-invoicing are significant for small businesses – it means quicker payments and reduced administration costs,” Carnell said.
“Research shows it costs $30.87 to process a paper invoice, $27.97 per PDF invoice and only $9.18 per e-invoice; a significant saving.
Currently, many small business owners rely upon paper invoicing, a process that can be fraught with errors. Research reports around 20 per cent of invoices today are sent to the wrong person and 30 per cent contain incorrect information – delaying payment.
“E-invoicing helps to eliminate processing errors as your core business details are stored online and can include a direct link to your bank account for payments,” Carnell said.
“E-invoicing also reduces the time from creating an invoice to getting paid as the sending and payment is automatic, which increases business productivity.”