Cloud Integrator success story: Approval Automation for AP and AR

“We offer ApprovalMax as part of our tech stack as it’s a great software for cost control and saves a significant amount of time on a typical approval process,” says Marc-Eric Blanchette.

Cloudmeb is a Xero Platinum partner operating in Canada, and with clients across the globe.

At its heart, Cloudmeb is a true cloud provider, managing clients using best in class technologies. They provide solutions that integrate with Xero to cover all their clients’ needs. Their goal is to give you the tools that will assist you in streamlining your business processes.

Cloudmeb wants its clients to grow, and they offer all the latest integrations to make that growth smart, simple and seamless leveraging the best technology there is.


But something was missing

Cloudmeb uses Xero as the accounting platform of choice in its product and service offering. Cloud-based accounting & bookkeeping software with Xero at its centre can be custom integrated with other apps from the Xero-ecosystem to simplify small and medium-sized business processes.

For instance, Receipt Bank is Cloudmeb’s default app for data capture (Cloudmeb are a Receipt Bank Gold Partner). Receipt Bank’s receipt scanner and expense tracker extracts key information from bills, receipts and invoices, removing the need for manual data entry.

However, for true end-to-end Bill Automation, a critical component was lacking: approval automation.

The manual approval process usually involves printing bills, dropping them in a shared folder, having the approver review the file and physically sign, rescan and reupload the document. Then the accounting department would have to open the file, view the signature and proceed to payment. Clearly, not an efficient way for things to run. Enter: ApprovalMax.

“We chose ApprovalMax as the preferred approval automation app because it offered a high level of flexibility and granularity on approvals. It helped remove our old, paper-based signature approvals and transition into a well-designed app-led process on the phone,” says Marc-Eric Blanchette, Founder and CEO of Cloudmeb.


Here’s how it works

ApprovalMax can be used for a number of approval scenarios, but typical cases include approving account payables, account receivables and generating purchase order approvals. Cloudmeb’s clients are using all these features, including the bill to purchase order (PO) matching.

Taking this in more detail, ApprovalMax provides the following key workflows:

  • Bill review and approval: Automatically pulls bills in the “awaiting approval” status from Xero and routes them according to the predefined approval workflow, based on predefined criteria.
  • PO creation & approval: Employees can raise POs without having to access the accounting system — both on-the-go and in the web interface.
  • Bill to PO matching: Allows matching of bills to the corresponding purchase orders for complete information on a bill. Incoming bill price can also be checked against Xero’s product catalogue to identify discrepancy.
  • Sales invoice management: Enables validation and approval of sales invoices to make sure they are issued in full correctness and with complete detail, as agreed with the client.


Receipt Bank + Xero + ApprovalMax = Seamless Bill Automation

Cloudmeb’s Bill Automation process now looks like this:

  1. Receipt Bank codes the bill and publishes to waiting for approval in Xero.
  2. The bills are then routed to the appropriate approver, thanks to a matrix based on the chart of accounts and suppliers. The approvers use the application and desktop to approve the bill.
  3. Accounting then sees that the bill is waiting for payment and proceeds to issue.


“Honestly, the app is very well done and gives approvers the ability to approve anywhere. The approval workflows are clear and efficient and allow for the needed granularity,” says Marc-Eric Blanchette.


Benefits unlocked:

  • Automatic routing to the correct approver – duty segregation and making sure you don’t spend time figuring out who has the right authority to approve and in which order the approval should go.
  • Multi-layered approvals – in Cloudmeb’s case, for invoices over 50k. This is essential for larger businesses with multiple approvers who want to be engaged in the process only in select cases, and after certain review and approval have been done for them to finally validate the spending.
  • Speed of approval process – no delays, with automatic notifications sent to approvers regarding requests pending their decision. Ability to view the approval status and costly bottlenecks in real-time.
  • Accuracy of approvals and audit trail – all approval decisions are automatically captured and stored, retrievable as an audit-ready report with all the necessary details for an external audit.


Want to try ApprovalMax for yourself? Sign up for your no-risk, 30-day free trial today.