Most AP Departments are a little like onions. They’ve developed organically in layers. People contribute different pieces of tribal knowledge which is layered onto new technologies as they are introduced until the systems look like a single organism, but tend to fall apart when you cut into them to see what’s really in there.
Which is why a well-organized and well-orchestrated migration, regardless of the solution you’ve elected to implement, can be the best investment you can make in the future of your AP Department.
Done right, a plan is created to utilize your existing technologies appropriately and seamlessly. Done right, your tribal knowledge is documented for ease of transferability, delegation, and risk management. Done right, the resulting systems support your needs now, and expand easily to meet your needs in the future.
Of course you hear a lot of horror stories about migrations done wrong. So do we. And since none of us live in a perfect world we know that some hiccups are inevitable. But it certainly doesn’t have to be a nightmare. Let’s take a look at three factors you may not have thought of if you’re preparing to implement a new AP automation solution.
- All that information that lives in people’s heads – that’s your Achilles’ Heel no matter what systems, processes, technologies, or solutions you put in place. Amy and her amazing team in our Digital Mailroom are a treasure trove of experience and best practices, but they aren’t really mind readers (although we have clients who swear that they are.) What many clients never considered before working with DataServ is that their next hires won’t be mind readers either. No matter how much experience they bring with them when they come on board they won’t be able to do their jobs without access to the tribal knowledge that your staff has accumulated one bit at a time.
- In experienced hands, the migration process should actually be an investment in more than an AP solution. This is your opportunity to work with external experts to evaluate your actual processing costs, your transparency and risk mitigation, and your ability to capture greater discounts and outsource low value tasks.
- Technology is, for most AP Departments, the lowest ROI investment they can make. When you invest in technology it means a learning curve for your staff, depreciation of equipment that soon becomes outdated, and further investments in upgrades as your needs change. When you invest in a technology partner you and your team will participate in the migration project, which will actually afford multiple opportunities to increase security and savings (see numbers one and two), and then you can let us worry about depreciation, upgrades, and maintenance while you focus on more important things.
I said three things, but there’s one other thing I want to add – I just can’t say that it’s something to think about no matter what solution you choose because as far as I know you won’t find it anywhere else. It is this; You don’t have to peel that onion all at once. All of our solutions integrate seamlessly, but they also work independently. We take a “bite-sized chunk” approach that requires no large upfront commitment. You can start small – maybe with a single function or process, or just one location at a time.
I’d also encourage you to read the IOFM white paper, The Single Solution to Invoice Processing Headaches. While it addresses only invoicing, which is just one aspect of Single Stream AP Processing, it addresses very clearly the challenges AP professionals are facing as well as recommended solutions.
As always, if you’re curious about how we can promise 100 percent digitalization with over 99 percent accuracy for your entire AP process take a look at this demo or just give us a call at 877.700.DATA (3282). We’d like to help you with a successful migration so that you can get back to doing the things that really matter.