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Celebrate Your Team: Finance & Accounting Appreciation Week 

September 21, 2023
people at work celebrating finance & accounting appreciation week

The Institute of Finance & Management (IOFM)s Finance & Accounting Appreciation Week is September 25-29, 2023. Now’s the time to order treats and circulate cards for your hard-working accounts payable (AP) team. AvidXchange’s own Rhonda Greene, principal solutions consultant, said it best:  

“I’ve never worked with an AP person that didn’t want to make a difference. To have an impact. No one really thinks about AP until something goes wrong, and an invoice is coded wrong, or something gets paid late and you miss a discount and then, you know, you’re getting yelled at. I’m always about, ‘Let’s celebrate them,’ because it’s kind of a thankless job, but it is so very, very important.”

And while everyone enjoys flowers and balloons or being taken out to lunch, why not get your AP team what they really want this year? Our AP Career Satisfaction Survey, conducted alongside IOFM, uncovered some interesting insights.  

Shorter Work Days

AP teams are often lean and overworked. Our survey revealed that 77% of AP professionals are working 40-50 or more hours per week to complete their responsibilities.  

When asked if they have a healthy work/life balance, results were mixed. Eighty-three percent of AP pros who work with fully automated systems said they did, compared to 45% of those who work with manual systems.  

AP automation can help your department complete manual tasks more efficiently. This frees up the AP team so they can go home on time on a typical workday and spend their evenings as they please.  

Remote Work

A World Economic Forum study found global employees prefer hybrid (68%) or fully remote (24%) work conditions. Individuals appreciate related benefits like no commute, improved work-life balance and flexible hours.  

According to our AP Career Satisfaction Survey, the majority of finance employees are working in hybrid (42%) or fully remote (19%) capacities. But for some AP teams, that isn’t a possibility.  

Without digitized processes, AP workers are tied to the office, routing invoice approvals, printing checks and filing paperwork. Cloud-based AP systems give staff visibility into every step of the payment process from anywhere at any time.  

Freedom to Take PTO

Only 22% of AP professionals took their full allotment of paid time off (PTO) in 2022, according to our survey with IOFM. Thirty-five percent took less than half of their PTO.

pto stats for finance and accounting appreciation week

Taking time off from work is important and reduces health risks. Employees who can’t relax and recharge are likely burnt out and not as productive at work. Our survey uncovered that a “workplace culture that respects time off” and “flexible work hours” rate nearly as high as salary and benefits on jobseekers’ wish lists. Workplaces that don’t support PTO risk employee attrition.  

With automated AP solutions, sophisticated workflows can easily reroute invoices when someone is out of office. This feature keeps approvals circulating without interruption. Additionally, automatic bill pay ensures suppliers always get paid on time. These technologies let AP staff unwind without worrying about work piling up in their absence. 

“[AP automation] allows teams to actually be able to step out of the office, go on vacation and not have to worry about ‘Oh, is somebody going to be entering in all the invoices?’ or, ‘Is somebody going to make sure that all those images are uploaded?’ and, ‘Is somebody going to file those?’ The check’s going to get out. You’re not going to get called on vacation because some vendor didn’t get their check today. So it’s a big deal.”

New Skills

According to our IOFM survey, 84% of AP professionals said learning/skills development is “moderately” or “extremely” important when evaluating a new job opportunity. Recent Gallup research underscores this, finding that workers ages 18-24 rate upskilling opportunities more important than paid vacation when evaluating a potential new job.  

AP professionals are willing and eager to update their skills and embrace technology that makes their jobs easier. In fact, 94% of the AP professionals we surveyed in our AP Career Satisfaction study said they’d welcome a tool to automate the most repetitive parts of their jobs.  

More Opportunities

Doing manual, repetitive tasks is unfulfilling. When it’s not automated, AP is full of these tasks – from mailing checks to hunting down missing invoices. By leveraging digital tools to complete these duties, AP staff can focus on more rewarding, strategic work. 

strategic initiatives for finance and accounting appreciation week

Our AP Career Satisfaction Survey found that 75% of AP professionals believe automation will have a positive impact on their career.  

What your AP team really wants this Finance & Accounting Appreciation Week is automation technology. It gives them more flexibility and efficiency in their work while enabling quicker and more accurate financial reporting. 

We still think AP pros deserve all the cupcakes and gift cards to celebrate Finance & Accounting Appreciation Week, but don’t overlook digital tools that make their job easier. Book an appointment to demo AvidXchange’s AP automation software. Give your finance professionals more time to focus on impactful, strategic projects to help drive better financial management and business growth. 

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