Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) In Business and Process Automation - Image by athree23 on Pixabay Increasingly, today’s consumer demands – and expects – not only quick resolution or immediate access to information but also ease of use and convenience.

To survive and thrive in today’s highly competitive business landscape, organisations need to seek solutions capable of helping them respond to users’ (and business) needs and do so timeously and efficiently. These solutions then drive increased value leading to improved user satisfaction, customer retention and growth.

And it is here where the combination of Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and business process automation can help hit this sweet spot. An API is a software intermediary allowing certain applications to access data and services from external entities.
(To learn more about APIs, please read APIs: What they are, where they come from – and why they are important!’)

API for Business Automation

First, let us define automation. It is about so much more than simply streamlining a process. Automation also includes bridging (connecting) back-end and user systems and their data. It enables a digital platform where users can ‘access’ said data to realise the required digital functionality for the completion of the tasks at hand. With APIs not restricted to where the data resides (i.e., cloud or on-premises or any specific platform), it allows users the flexibility to work limitlessly across systems acting as a complex yet independent layer of any business model. Essentially, an API-enabled organisation can expect connectivity to bind all its digitisation efforts together without exposing a system to security threats.

Let us take a closer look at some specific areas where process automation can deliver enormous value within an organisation.

Procure to Pay (P2P) automation

The ‘process of doing business within a business’. The procurement process is often complex and filled with numerous tasks from requisitions, purchase orders, invoices et al. Automation allows for increased efficiencies and document management. With all documents stored in the chosen ERP system, API integration can directly communicate the required activities, thereby streamlining three-way matching processes and payment clearances between the vendor, the customer, and the bank.

Order to Cash (O2C) automation

Order to Cash is the process on the ‘other’ side of procurement – from the fulfilment of customers’ orders through to ensuring the relevant payments have been cleared. An API-integrated platform ensures all relevant documentation pertaining to an order or buyer (quotes, contracts, sales & purchase orders, shipping documents, invoices, etc.) are accessible through simple API calls. Better visibility allows for better order management. It also allows for the automation of specific workflows responsible for the various tasks involved. For example, the generation of shipping documents, invoice receipts, etc., leading to greater efficiencies and time-saving.

Purchase order receipts

Purchase order receipts records that the items that were ordered are received. This is in preparation for invoicing. In this instance, APIs allow for all quantifiable details to be requested automatically. This ensures and verifies transparency between purchase items and warehouse units, eliminating room for error.

Goods Received Note (GRN)

Goods Received Notes are an essential part of the supply chain. It validates that orders are received and delivered without discrepancies. An API platform helps to automate this verification process. It includes delivery notes, GRNs and purchase orders. With all data accounted for and no errors, timely payment is possible.

And more

In fact, all critical business processes can be automated using API integration. Additional examples include onboarding, quote to cash and opportunity to order.  Simply put, APIs allow one piece of software to communicate with another. The benefits are numerous – increased productivity, innovation, employee engagement and collaboration, greater agility, increased revenue together and decreased operational costs – to name but a few.

Contact Symtrax to find out the benefits of APIs across your business and process automation.

symtraxAt Symtrax, we help businesses accelerate its transition towards the digital future it envisions and needs!

We realise that digital transformation is about so much more than simply upgrading a single piece of technology for one process. The combined effort of multiple technologies able to work together, albeit on disparate systems, is what truly contributes towards effective (and holistic) digital transformation. And it is here where the value, and the sweet spot, lies.

Our collaborative approach allows organisations to harvest the most out of its resources, improving efficiencies without comprising security. Using automation, our document management services help to reduce manual dependences – making data management easier (cloud and on-premises).

Further, our direct integration with ERPs (API-based) ensures a direct communication channel with the system, delivering automated data conversion that allows you to toggle between the data formats best suited to your business processes.

Our solution is powered with RPA capabilities and an integrated modern EDI solution for standard-specific document transmission.

As your business grows, scale your initiatives to match your changing requirements – maximising the value of digital document transformation.


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