Finland & Slovenia eInvoicing Initiative
Based on gradually enlarged cooperation between the Technology Centre Kareltek Inc., Lappeenranta, Finland and the eCenter, Faculty of Organizational Sciences, University of Maribor, Slovenia since January 2003, we are jointly announcing a Finland & Slovenia "eInvoicing LivingLab" initiative for wider cooperation in Finland and Slovenia. The LivingLab cooperation initiative is based on the eInvoicing related events and joint activities since January 2003. Participation in the “eInvoicing LivingLab” is open to organizations in the neighboring countries creating an emerging eRegion.
The benefits of the eInvoicing are obvious. Typically, companies receiving an eInvoice benefit more from cost reduction than companies that send eInvoices. This is why large companies and public organizations (often called ePioneers in Finland) have a great interest in receiving eInvoices and thus automating their supply chain management processes, procurement and bookkeeping. The same desire is visible in Global Business networks which have become very important to SMEs. Increasingly, the first step that large companies demand from SME´s is that they start implementing eInvoices.
Software companies and service providers have to implement new eInvoice standards in their financial software applications and services in order to become new business “eDoc” operators. New eBusiness applications will give more freedom to spread and share the work between SME´s and auditing companies.
Instead of relying on point-to-point Electronic Data Interchange - EDI solutions, the eInvoice concept is based on independent transfer of documents opening the market to new players. It is serving large companies with a high level of service. The role of banks has changed to provision of eInvoicing service to their customers. In client companies, good networks and interoperability are necessary requirements for eInvoicing. eInvoice is a win–win solution to all players bringing better competitiveness to the economy as a whole, but only when the usage of the eInvoices is high. Public financing can speed up the adoption of eInvoices eg. in regional eBusiness projects (eRegion) that help SMEs to start implementing new applications and to help employees to use them efficiently.
Regional eBusiness projects have an important role to play by keeping all the players around the table by the means of workshops, real-life testing, and providing discussion fora. In that regard the eInvoicing LivingLab is an important mechanism.