The parable of the blind men and the elephant

Once upon a time, there lived six blind men in a village.

One day the villagers told them, “There is an elephant in the village today.”

They had no idea what an elephant is.  They decided, “Even though we would not be able to see it, let us go and feel it anyway.” All of them went and touched the elephant.

  • Hey, the elephant is a pillar,” said the first man who touched his leg.
  • “Oh, no! it is like a rope,” said the second man who touched the tail.
  • “Oh, no! it is like a thick branch of a tree,” said the third man who touched the trunk of the elephant.
  • “It is like a big hand fan” said the fourth man who touched the ear of the elephant.
  • “It is like a huge wall,” said the fifth man who touched the belly of the elephant.
  • “It is like a solid pipe,” Said the sixth man who touched the tusk of the elephant.

They began to argue about the elephant and every one of them insisted that he was right. It looked like they were getting agitated. A wise man was passing by and he saw this.

He stopped and asked them, “What is the matter?”

They said, “We cannot agree to what the elephant is like.”

Each one of them told what he thought the elephant was like.

The wise man calmly explained to them, “All of you are right. The reason each of you is telling it differently is because each of you touched a different part of the elephant. So, actually the elephant has all those features what you all said.”

“Oh!” everyone said. There was no more fight.

Touchless processing is the elephant of AP automation

Almost every AP Manager has been exposed to some aspect of AP Automation.  The terminology is extensive, and includes electronic invoice capture, paper/PDF invoice capture, OCR, invoice validation, approval workflow automation, supplier portal, payments integration, etc.  The list goes on.

What is touchless invoice processing?  What are the components? Which features are required and which are optional? And what is the glide path to true touchless processing?

These will be the focus of upcoming blogs. Then there will be “no more fight.”