New Year’s resolution: stop fixing other people’s stuff
Speaking to many finance executives, one of the most frustrating and unfulfilling parts of their day is the time spent by their team in fixing other people’s stuff. Scattered across every business are people who do things in a haphazard way that sooner or later end up in the hands of Finance to fix. Unformed requests for opening new accounts are classic. Sales want a new debtor set up for a ‘hot prospect’ about to place the order. Operations are desperate for a new supplier that is the only provider of this critically important and urgent widget. Project managers need new cost centres created on the run or service scheduling can’t be completed. HR has joiners and leavers cycling through the place all the time. All good reasons but rush, rush, rush and dodgy data upstream makes for unnecessary administration in the office of finance.
What these people are all guilty of is generating poorly-formed new account opening requests. People are great at providing the barest minimum in order to ‘get things rolling’ and get it out of their hands! Invariably the job falls to the finance team to fill in the blanks and turn an unformed request into an actionable job that results in a new client/supplier/employee/project being added to the business. Time and again, Finance end up fixing other peoples’ stuff.
This lack of attention to detail and resulting denial of ownership cannot be allowed to continue! In reality it is not too hard to set this right. In the Infor SunSystems and Microsoft DynamicsGP worlds we have this neatly sorted out. Using new account opening within XMPro, people throughout the business can complete friendly web forms to request that clients, suppliers, employees, projects, etc, be added to the system. These forms guide the person to complete sufficient information for the system to properly route the request to the correct person for each next step. Frequently there are steps that can be completed concurrently rather than sequentially. XMPro’s business rules can route parallel processes to radically speed up completion times.
For example, adding a new supplier; the XMPro web form asks for the barest minimum of information necessary to get things started. The possible next step may be an automated email to the new supplier with a Microsoft Word document that contains all the necessary information fields required for us to start trading with them: sales and AP contact details, ABN, bank lodgement details, special instructions, etc. When they email the document back it is automatically loaded into the XMPro new supplier request and auto-completes all the data fields needed to progress through the review and approval steps (including an online verification of the ABN). On final approval the new supplier master records are automatically created in either Microsoft Dynamics GP or Infor SunSystems and indeed any other application such as assets, billing, HR, etc. (The IT speak for this sort activity is Master Data Management.)
A similarly effectively process for client onboarding has the appropriate extra tasks in it, like credit checking online with Veda or Dun & Bradstreet, scheduling manual trade reference checks and recording the outcomes, reviewing and approving the credit terms, etc.
Do you want a quick, easy, efficient and professional solution to badly formed new account opening requests? Make it your New Year’s resolution to stop fixing other peoples’ stuff.
You can read more about Professional Advantage and XMPro here.