Australian government agency tests e-invoices

Australian technology company, MessageXchange has announced the successful demonstration of end-to-end transaction between the Australian Government and a private sector recipient using a new Australian e-invoicing standard.

The Australian Government’s Department of Industry, Innovation and Science used MessageXchange, an Australian-developed cloud service, to securely deliver a test e-invoice to a grant recipient. The e-invoice is claimed to be the first of its kind to be sent by an Australian Government department.

The Department of Industry, Innovation and Science’s Chief Operating Officer, Michael Schwager said “e-invoicing will deliver benefits to our suppliers, including grant recipients, but it will also allow the department to streamline its internal accounts payable processes. These in turn will generate efficiencies and improve the timeliness of payments to suppliers.”

The new Australian e-invoicing standard has been created through a collaboration between Government and Industry, led by the Digital Business Council. The Council was founded in 2015 to develop, deploy and facilitate the adoption of digital standards in Australia. It has been estimated that widespread adoption of e-invoicing could save Australian businesses between $A7 billion and $A10 billion each year.

Members of the Council include the Australian Taxation Office, Australian Government Department of Finance, NSW Government Department Finance, and the Australian Local Government Association (ALGA). Other members include industry bodies such as the Australian Business Software Industry Association (ABSIA), the Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA), Chartered Accounts (CA ANZ), and the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (CIPS).

Peter Strong, CEO Council of Small Business Australia and Chair Digital Business Council commented, “e-invoicing is a transformational step in Australia’s digital business movement to a streamlined, integrated and productive economy, and is an exciting step forward especially for the small business community. The Council is especially pleased to see Government at the forefront of digital transformation.”

John Delaney, co-founder and Managing Director of Australian-developed cloud integration service MessageXchange explained, “e-invoicing offers significant processing and payment time efficiencies over scanned or emailed invoices. Many of Australia’s largest and most efficient supply chains already use MessageXchange, which currently processes more than 100 million transactions a year.”

“We have demonstrated that both our MessageXchange and Colladium cloud services are ready to securely handle e-invoices using the new Australian standard. Most importantly, we have demonstrated that both Government agencies and Industry will be able to very inexpensively and rapidly reap the benefits of e-invoicing.”

Until recently in Australia, e-invoicing and Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) technologies have been predominantly used in the supply chains of large businesses, with varying standards presenting barriers for small businesses. Industry standardisation of e-invoicing is likely to increase adoption, while also reducing costs and complexity for all.

The collaboration between the private sector and the Australian Government achieved through the Council has led to the establishment of regulation, industry standardisation and mechanisms that instil trust in the e-invoicing framework. The new framework is designed to reduce barriers to entry and provide a level playing field for all Australian businesses that wish to adopt e-invoicing.

www.messagexchange.com  

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