The complexity of the Alcohol Beverage category can cause vendors and retailers big headaches. Pricing fluctuations, promotional activity, vendor changes, discrepancies between vendor invoices and retailer receivings and more can cause significant amounts of data inconsistencies. Both vendors and retailers of all sizes have traditionally absorbed high labor costs to address these significant accounting discrepancies and their impact on the alcohol payment process.
iControl's patent-pending Next-Generation Reconciliation™ utilizes advanced and proprietary algorithms to collect, sort, organize and filter this data sourced from vendor and retailer partners and, for the first time ever, provides retailers with the ability to electronically reconcile alcohol deliveries against receiving records. The following are 5 ways that Next-Generation Reconciliation™ will help you save time and money.
1. Line Item Matching
Costs can vary between what a vendor is charging on an invoice and what a retailer believes they should be paying. Often, this is due to a price change or promotion that has not been synchronized between these trading partners.
iControl's Next-Generation Reconciliation™ matches up product costs between vendor invoices and retailer accounting systems. Rather than having to manually search and match up receiving invoices with vendor delivery invoices already paid by cash, check or money orders, the Line Item Matching report pulls these disparate data sets together and merges them into one integrated format.
Dynamically match vendor line items to retailer pricebooks without a common key using iControl’s proprietary algorithm, while normalizing unit quantities (i.e., case quantities vs. selling units) and preventing pricing errors from lingering.
Line Item Matching [Sample]
2. Automated Credit Submission and Tracking
Due to alcohol payment regulations, retailers are often required to pay the invoice cost, and follow up with a credit request to the vendor afterward. This can cause unnecessary paperwork processing, accounting submissions and reconciliation by both parties. Retailer cash flow is also impacted by overpaying, in many cases, and experiencing delayed reimbursements until credit is processed by the vendor.
But, with iControl's Next-Generation Reconciliation™, vendors and retailers can automate credit processing within a single user interface to streamline payments. Variances are identified and credit requests are established automatically and tracked until resolution, while variance tolerance settings let you focus on those discrepancies that matter most to your bottom line.
3. Vendor Invoice Scorecards
It's good to know that a vendor's delivery invoice matches the retailer's receiving invoice. But it is even better to know that accuracy rate over the course of a week, month or even the whole year! Tracking trends such as invoice accuracy within a Vendor Invoice Scorecard can provide the insights and perspective needed to establish baseline performance by vendor or by retailer that can be used to set expectations, identify issues and make adjustments that can also be tracked to determine improvements and overall effectiveness.
Vendor Invoice Scorecard [Sample]
4. Cost Variance Scorecards
To manage cost variances efficiently, it is essential to have a holistic view of where those cost variances are occurring. The Cost Variance Scorecard features three separate views that provide different perspectives on top-ranking total cost variances by vendor, by store and by product UPC. This scorecard itself can then be filtered by data range, vendor name, Store ID and product UPC.
For example, when viewing the top cost variances by vendor, the top 3 vendor names can then be used to filter the scorecard to generate top cost variances by store and product for just those vendors.
This powerful filtering takes what would be two-dimensional ranking tables, and turns them into three-dimensional insights that can enable more proactive approaches to improving synchronization of data.
5. Product and Category Cost Dashboards
iControl's patent-pending Next-Gen Reconciliation™ provides retailers with assurance that they are purchasing products at the best cost available by region, market and even by store...which maximizes the profitability of their Alcohol Beverage category.
iControl's Product Cost Dashboards allow retailers to track product costs from their Vendors, and can be especially valuable if those products are available by more than one vendor that may already be servicing a particular retail location. This type of tracking uses convenient geographic visualizations to start with a high level view of product costs by location, while providing the ability for users to drill down within the map to focus on specific areas or stores. In addition, this map can be filtered by time frame, product or geographical hierarchies.
Category Cost Dashboards available with Next-Gen Reconciliation™ empower retailers with the ability to evaluate fluctuations in vendor product costs over time. This provides better insight into category profitability that can be enhanced further by drilling down to vendor and even product UPC. In addition, the forecasting features of this dashboard aggregates past cost trends and utilizes advanced algorithms to provide profitability forecasts for future months. With this visibility, retailers are able to more accurately project major factors that impact category profit performance.
Comprehensive Data Management
An ideal data and invoice reconciliation solution does not add another layer of confusing software and difficult-to-use programs, but provides easily-accessible reporting that replaces manual accounting procedures with aggregated data sets within a user-friendly portal. In addition, this data analytics portal automates the most labor-intensive aspects of reconciling retailer payments with vendor delivery invoices, while providing the necessary scorecards and dashboards to more proactively monitor and address the most significant factors impacting alcohol payment efficiency.
iControl's patent-pending Next-Generation Reconciliation™ enables and empowers vendors and retailers alike to revolutionize their approach to outdated, manual invoice reconciliation with a cutting-edge software solution. Click below to learn more about how to implement it for your business.