Hermes: a new ally for the development of e-invoicing



For years, the IT sector has been anticipating the growth of e-invoice volumes. The good news is that the Hermes tool, which enables the senders of e-invoices to reach all their customers, is also a major ally to the IT sector! Find out how Hermes is changing the game for the development of e-invoicing.

Hermes removes the most cumbersome obstacle

As explained in this practical article on Hermes, the first parties to benefit from the advantages of this tool are senders who are able to send electronic invoices or who are ready to make the transition. By providing a link between those who already send e-invoices and those who are not yet able to receive them, Hermes removes the main obstacle that prevents them from switching to e-invoices.

But this is just one of benefits of Hermes... The most interesting benefits also accrue to the recipients and the IT sector.

The advantages of Hermes for recipients

Two-thirds of the efficiency gains from e-invoicing are enjoyed by the recipients of e-invoices. Generally speaking, it is the recipient that encourages its suppliers to switch to e-invoicing.

However, to do this, they must ensure that they will receive enough e-invoices, so that the future savings justify:

  1. their equipment costs

  2. the effort and time invested in persuading all their suppliers

Thanks to Hermes, both of these conditions are considerably easier to meet. As more and more senders will adopt e-invoicing before their customers do, the latter will benefit, from day one, from volumes of incoming e-invoices that largely justify their equipment costs, and they will no longer need to persuade their suppliers.

An opportunity for the IT sector

Nevertheless, so that senders and receivers can enjoy the benefits of e-invoicing, one condition must be met: the IT sector must develop and market the tools needed to process e-invoices automatically, at a price that is affordable for businesses.

The expected increase in the volume of e-invoices in circulation will create the conditions for mobilising this sector to this end. It doesn't matter that some of these invoices pass via Hermes. This is only an intermediate step, which is necessary due to the current situation. Once the necessary tools are available and at sufficiently attractive conditions, Hermes will no longer be necessary.

Up to 60 times more e-invoices

Following several years of efforts, only about 20,000 Belgian companies receive e-invoices. Thanks to Hermes, all Belgian companies, i.e. 1.2 million organisations, will be able to receive e-invoices from one day to the next. Even if they are not yet set up to process them automatically.

In other words, we can expect a 60-fold increase in the volume of e-invoices, and therefore a 60-fold reduction in the costs of processing e-invoices. As with any innovation, one obstacle to the widespread take-up of e-invoicing lies in its prohibitive cost ... until a solution is found which democratises it. In this respect, Hermes is the ally par excellence of the IT sector!

Do yourself a favour: use Hermes too!

As an actor in the IT sector concerned about the widespread take-up of e-invoicing, you can act in two ways:

  1. help recipients move away from reliance on Hermes by marketing processing solutions that meet their needs - and therefore their sector of activity, and are affordable;

  2. offer senders access to Hermes: by signing the integration agreement, you can handle the technical and practical aspects of using Hermes for your customers who send invoices. In so doing, you will be contributing to the success of the Hermes strategy, in your own best interest.

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