New ICC Academy certification focuses on e-invoicing solutions

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Singapore, 11 July 2019 – The educational arm of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the ICC Academy—in partnership with Mastercard, Basware and Xero—has launched the E-Invoicing Solutions Certificate (ESC). The specialised online programme aims to help businesses improve working capital efficiency and productivity by equipping them with the necessary knowledge and expertise required to implement electronic invoicing, also known as e-invoicing.

In today’s digital economy, where cross border trade is becoming increasingly prevalent, businesses are continuously looking to streamline the complexities of processing invoices. As a result, businesses have turned to e-invoicing—resulting in steady and unequivocal industry growth in recent years— allowing them cost savings and increased control, as well as fraud reduction and an improved customer experience.

Speaking about the new certificate, ICC Academy General Manager Daniel Kok said: “The programme provides a collaborative mapping for businesses to understand what e-invoicing entails, its benefits and the steps required to ensure successful implementation. Created with leading industry players, the programme leverages a deep understanding of the digital payments ecosystem to increase the efficiency of an organisation’s finance operations and spur on-time payments, while making it easier to transact with customers.”

While today’s borderless world has thrown the floodgates for trade wide open, it has also presented businesses with processing and payment related challenges. According to a Small and Medium-Sized Enterprise (SME) Financing Survey, customer payment delays are a top finance-related concern, with three in five SMEs struggling with the implications of delayed payments from customers. In the same vein, a United States Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis study indicated that about 92% of e-invoices were “paid on time” compared to 45% of paper invoices.

“When companies are just starting out, invoicing is pretty straightforward. It’s when the volume of customers increases that it starts to become a challenge. Digitising invoicing is essential to a business’s ability to grow today. While this may sound daunting, it starts with a simple switch to e-invoicing. For ambitious SMEs, this practical and user-friendly e-course is a must, as it combines the decades of know-how and resources of the ICC Academy, Mastercard, Basware and Xero to help SMEs improve their day-to-day business operations” said James Anderson, Executive Vice President, Commercial Products, Mastercard.

Divided into five lessons, the three-hour interactive e-course outlines traditional invoicing methods, offers an overview of e-invoicing and highlights the importance of going digital, along with six industry case studies. Candidates taking the programme can also get insight into the digital transformation journey of Churros Republic – the fastest growing Singapore-start-up, recently selected as the “Preferred Churros Partner” for the Michelin Street Food Festival. Finally, the e-course includes a 30-minute discussion with Mastercard on the benefits of adopting digital capabilities.

Commenting on the importance of the certificate, Basware Corporate Vice President Perttu Nihti said: “According to research from Basware and Mastercard, only 20% of businesses have automated accounts payable processes that are optimised to effectively manage invoice payment. By adopting e-invoicing, businesses can improve productivity, control cash flow and management of working capital, enhance supplier-customer relationships, control fraud and decrease their carbon footprint.

Basware has been providing e-invoicing services across the world for the last 20 years. We are extremely delighted to have partnered with the ICC Academy in creating this certificate programme that provides an overview of e-invoicing and its step-by-step implementation.”

The curriculum will be delivered via the ICC Academy’s innovative digital platform, which can be used on multiple devices. The platform includes new features, such as an integrated and searchable course glossary, dynamic videos, a quiz review dashboard for assessment tracking, achievement badges, automatic bookmarking and pre-assessment games.