Arbutus SmartApps - Identify Duplicates

This post shows you the steps to use Arbutus SmartApps to identify duplicates in accounts payable files.

While most modern accounting systems have controls in place to automatically stop duplicate payables being entered into the system, there is no end to the imagination of staff for ways to get around those controls. The controls in most accounting systems are strict controls for example the duplicate invoice controls will stop a payable being entered if it is the same dollar amount, on the same invoice number, for the same vendor, however, as most staff entering payables know this they know that they can easily bypass the control by changing the invoice number ever so slightly for example invoice IV12398 could become IV12398a or IV12398!. By doing this the "smarts" in the accounts payable system don't recognise the invoice as a duplicate and it will happily accept it and process the payment. Other effective controls are the three-way match where the invoice needs to match a goods receipt note (GRN) and a purchase order. But yet again not all organisations have the three-way match implemented, which means that it is still possible to enter duplicate invoices.

Data analytics by auditors is a great way to help companies identify duplicate payments and hopefully be able to recover the payments to the vendors.

Arbutus Analyzer 6.3 and above ship with more than 60 pre-built scripts called "SmartApps". These SmartApps are designed for any user of Arbutus Analyzer from Novice to Expert to be able to quickly perform a range of analytics on data. This post focuses on the SmartApp "Duplicate Invoices".

The steps to perform duplicate payments analysis using Arbutus Analyzer SmartApps are:

Step 1: Import and define the file

Step 2: Click on the SmartApps menu

Step 3: Select the menu item "Accounts Payable"

Step 4: Select the sub-menu item "AP02 - Duplicate Payments"

Step 5: Follow the SmartApp steps to confirm the data fields

Step 6: Follow the SmartApp steps to select the fields to test

Step 7: Follow the SmartApp steps to select the tests to be performed

Step 8: Click on OK

Step 9: Review the tables created. Note: some of the tables will show the duplicates in the file from left to right, while others will show from top to bottom.

This test is designed to also perform fuzzy matching on the duplicates so that invoice IV12398a will be matched with IV12398! and IV12398. It will also find invoices that have close dates or are close in the payment amount. It presents them in tables ready to examine.

Here is a short video tutorial on it.

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