On this page the APA brings a wealth of industry information and statistics drawn from our own resources and also from around the internet. We hope you enjoy these statistics and feel free to leave comments.
How many people work in the UK AP Industry?
Here are some statistics and information:
- There are 70,000 people that have UK LinkedIn member profiles with “Accounts Payable in their profile, see this link
- The APA estimates that at any point in time there are 250,000 people working in the AP industry throughout the UK. The discrepancy with LinkedIn is caused by a) AP staff not registering with LinkedIn and b) LinkedIn members using alternative job title words (e.g. “Purchase Ledger”)
- We have over 31,000 members on our LinkedIn AP Forum alone
Checkout our guide to accounts payable facts and statistics
General Accounts Payable statistics
Here are some general AP statistics to give you “food for thought”
- A US survey revealed that 62% of AP departments are managed by women
- The average cost to process an invoice is between £3.50 and about £8.60 in the majority of organisations. Although in exceptional circumstances individual problematic invoices can cost £15+ to process
- Around 3.6% of invoices manually entered include an error caused by data entry
- In a survey of businesses processing 350,000+ invoices per year the problems caused due to AP exceptions on invoices, were:
- 32% of all late payments and
- 36% of all supplier related phone calls
- In a survey of over 500 finance UK professionals, the following were the main findings:
Need more time:
- 57% of all invoices were just received loosely on pieces of paper
- 54% of businesses said invoices were being sent to the wrong place
- 36% said they were concerned with late payments due to process delays
- 56% of businesses experienced cash flow forecasting problems due to AP issues
- 63% had received duplicated invoices, of which 33% had actually paid them!
- 78% admitted to paying supplier invoices late
- 58% had needed to pay late payment charges to suppliers
- 33% had used CHAPS to make same day payments (at a cost)
Partnering with suppliers:
- 90% said they regularly had phone calls from suppliers chasing payments
- 69% said they received supplier payment chasing calls every week
- 53% said they can’t provide answers immediately over the phone and need to call back
- 23% said they had suppliers who refused to work with them again due to AP process inefficiencies
APA benchmarking and salary surveys
A survey ran by the APA on accounts payable professionals found that:
- 80% of AP professionals we asked agreed that technology is important in their role.
- Over 50% of AP professionals asked think there is not enough support around AP training.
- Nearly 50% of AP professionals we asked find it difficult to get support for their role.
- 70% of AP professionals we asked said access to qualifications and training would assist their professional development.
Want to tell us about your AP journey? Complete our survey here.
If you’re interested in AP facts and statistics then make sure that you read our benchmarking and salary surveys. The APA will regularly be publishing benchmarking information whilst the annual salary survey will provide valuable AP related statistical information. Request your copy of the APA 2017 Annual Salary Survey Results Now!
The APA will be publishing statistics on a regular ongoing basis, sometimes in our blog posts and through newsletters, etc. Contact the Birmingham Office to discuss any aspects relating to Accounts Payable facts and statistics.