You want to build a future for your company with automation at the forefront. The thing is, unlike so many other business dealings, automation can’t be boiled down to a simple one-time transaction. So many factors go into making a digital transformation successful. That’s why it helps to think about automation not as a deal, but as a relationship.
Know Yourself to Find a Better Match
When you first begin a digital transformation initiative, it can be easy to get swept up in the excitement of the decision. Unfortunately, not taking the time to look inward and determine your business goals and ROI can result in stumbling into a contract with a solution that isn’t good for you.
It’s absolutely vital to do a little company soul-searching and figure out the roots of your pain points as well as any unique factors or functions that will need to be taken into consideration when integrating new software. Try getting managers and representatives from each department together to see where processes can be improved elsewhere in your organization.
You Deserve To Be Empowered
You wouldn’t date someone if you thought that it would be a source of stress and frustration. So why would you accept a burdensome automation solution? Finding the right software provider is of the utmost importance because automation is intended to empower your employees and streamline your day-to-day processes.
When you begin your search for a software partner, be inquisitive and confident. Express your process issues and your business goals, as well as the unique differentiators that separate you from your competitors. Ask probing questions to understand the product’s intended uses, areas of expertise, and the company's experience solving problems like yours.
You know what your needs are so don’t compromise on them. There are plenty of cyber-fish in the digital-sea. If a candidate is telling you they can’t adapt to your unique situation, keep searching. Don’t get saddled with a one size fits all approach, especially when there are other solutions out there that might be a better match.
Finding the right partner takes time. Do your best to be patient, because your organization deserves an automation happily-ever-after.
It's Okay to “Break-up”
The unfortunate reality is that not all romantic relationships and partnerships last and the same goes for companies and their software providers. Maybe your organization made a hasty software purchase in the midst of Covid or perhaps your longtime provider isn’t making your growing business a priority.
Whatever the case, don’t be afraid of making a change. Yes, it will involve some work to search for and implement a new partner, but it will be worth the effort if it means saving time, money, and frustration down the road.
Seeing your business processes thrive should be the top priority for you AND your software provider. There’s no shame in “breaking up” with your automation partner if things aren’t working out. Keep an eye out for these important signs that it may be time to reevaluate your solution:
- You are not seeing the cost and efficiency savings you were promised.
- The software is confusing, inconsistent, or overly complicated to use or train on.
- It isn’t able to cleanly adapt to satisfy unique business practices or industry regulations.
- It struggles to scale with increased activity or broaden its range of applications.
- There is a lack of friendly, qualified, or timely support when you encounter issues.
- Managing the system still requires a high level of human intervention.
The Right Software Partner Will Grow with You
When looking for your perfect software match, don’t just fixate on your current process problem, look for a solution that is future-compatible. If you’ve properly identified your goals and ROI’s for the future, you can use those as a standard by which to eliminate products that won’t grow with your business.
Take into consideration as many factors as possible including other departments, relevant subsidiaries, or industry regulations and compliances. If a potential partner is only willing to take on some of your processes needs, then it may be best to look around for an alternative before making a commitment.
A successful long-term digital transformation strategy is founded on honest and frequent communication. The right software partner will be eager to listen to your process pains, yet thoughtful and flexible in recommending an approach to addressing them. Be thorough in your search and don’t compromise for the sake of urgency. The perfect process automation partner will take your organization as it is, and provide the tools and support needed to help it flourish.
DocuPhase and IOFM Will Be Your Wingmen!
Join DocuPhase and the Institute of Finance and Management on Wednesday, July 20th at 2:00 PM EDT for a FREE webinar. We'll expand on what it means to have an Automation Partner, and shine a light on a few things you MUST know before beginning your digital transformation in Accounts Payable. Don't automate without all the facts. Sign up here: https://www.iofm.com/ap/webinars/the-untold-truths-of-ap-automation