Man lays in hammock and uses smartphone

On the Beach Using His Smartphone, HOA Board Member Approves Invoices

Jason King, a board member for the condominium community Trellis Fifth Avenue in San Diego, California, recently took a vacation. While on break in Mexico, three vendor invoices arrived. For all three, he simply clicked “approve” from his smartphone.

On the beach.

Sound like a cool way to do business?

We agree. But there’s more to it.

The vendors for this homeowners association (HOA) got paid faster because they didn’t have to wait for Jason to return from vacation.

Time savings of 77 percent

Mr. King shared this story with us — the ability to approve invoices wherever he goes at any time — to highlight a key benefit of AvidStrongroom, an accounts payable (AP) automation software.

Within the past year he’s approved 485 invoices for many types of vendors including landscapers, engineers, lawyers, painters and roofers.

Plus, the software has cut the time to approve invoices and deliver payments to vendors, on average, from 30 days to 7 days – a time savings of up to 77 percent.

How AvidStrongroom Works

AvidStrongroom’s value during budget season

The software’s also an “incredibly powerful tool during budget season,” he says.

Within AvidStrongroom he’s able to check, for instance, how much the association spent on electricity last year and, based on that, figure out how much to budget for that expense in the coming year.

“The nice thing about AvidStrongroom is I can review past invoices and expenses to help determine budget amounts for next year. We can go into the software and pull all the bills for a vendor or even a category and figure out if our budgeted amount for next year is on target.”

In addition, it’s been easier to ensure we aren’t being overcharged because of the software’s easy-to-find historical data.

He took advantage of the data recently to figure out that the board had spent only $32,000 on insurance premiums the previous year when the previous board had mistakenly budgeted $80,000.

Better control of payments and invoices

AvidStrongroom also gives Mr. King and Trellis Fifth Avenue better control of payments.

“As a board member, being able to see an invoice and, if necessary, reject it and send it back to the manager, is a huge benefit in controlling payment processes.” He also likes being able to find historical invoice and payment information rapidly and easily especially for a particular vendor. “That’s tremendously powerful.”

Processes didn’t miss a beat during pandemic

The software’s been crucial as well during the pandemic. Trellis Fifth Avenue didn’t experience any disruptions in paying its vendors.

“The pandemic didn’t affect our payment processes in the slightest. It was business as usual.”

Why?

Because the payments were sent electronically from remote work locations without the need to meet to sign and approve paper checks, he says. Plus, payments moved through the approval process from person to person in minutes.  “I may approve two to three invoices a day at different times – instead of waiting and signing a stack of checks once a week.”

Preference for AvidStrongroom

Mr. King and his board of directors remain enduring fans of AvidStrongroom. For several years he’s known about the software’s benefits. A few years ago, when the board shopped for a new management company it was important to them that the management company they selected used AvidStrongroom.

Why?

“Because we know how much better, faster, and efficient it is for AP processing,” he said. “It gives me third-party assurance that management is paying our bills. The visibility AvidStrongroom gives me is huge. Not only can I see the status of payments, I can see where each one is in the process. I can proactively address concerns with management before I hear complaints from vendors.”

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