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Case Study

Global Retailer Pays Vendor Invoices Twice As Fast With IA

7,000 invoices processed each week increases efficiency
2.5X faster end-to-end invoice processing
98% accurate in capturing data

Bargain-hunting shoppers flock to an off-price global retailer for great deals on name-brand items. The retailer’s buyers are smart shoppers, just like their customers, and they procure unique items from thousands of different vendors. Since the vendors sent their invoices to the company in a wide variety of formats, employees had to manually review each one, which could delay payments. To speed up invoice processing, the retailer equipped their SS&C Blue Prism digital workers with SS&C | Blue Prism® Decipher IDP.


The company operates 4,700 stores in nine countries, and each week receives thousands of invoices from more than 12,000 vendors in hundreds of different invoice templates. Since the invoices are submitted in a wide variety of formats and languages, a team of 30 employees had to manually review each one before passing it to the accounts payable team for payment. It was difficult for the employees to keep up with the volume. Vendors often had to wait to receive payments, which impacted the company’s relationships with these key partners. The complexity of the invoices meant errors crept in — and the repetitive nature of the work led to low employee satisfaction.


The company already had an SS&C Blue Prism digital workforce engaged in 160 processes throughout their business. To streamline the vendor invoice payment process they added Decipher, an intelligent document processing (IDP) tool, to their RPA toolkit. 

Now when an invoice arrives in the company’s central mailbox, it’s placed in a central repository where digital workers pick it up and send it to Decipher. Decipher reads the invoice, interprets the data, and validates it against predefined rules and data lists. Machine learning (ML) helps Decipher to recognize each invoice template and extract key data.

Next, digital workers take the standardized file, combine it with information from other systems, and run checks to ensure the accuracy and auditability of the invoice. Once the invoice has been validated, digital workers send it to the payment processing system for the final payout to the vendor.

Digital workers are helping the retailer quickly process nearly 7,000 invoices each week and easily sort distinct invoice formats, languages, and tax requirements. Manual errors have been virtually eliminated and the accuracy rate is 98%. The wait time for payments has also been reduced — the new end-to-end solution is 2.5 times faster than the old process. Employees have been upskilled and are now completing work like directly communicating with vendors to resolve more complicated invoicing issues. The company continues to expand its intelligent automation capability by dispatching digital workers to teams in customer care, finance, human resources, IT, operations, and supply chain.

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