As we get closer to 2020, a digitalisation strategy seems more important than ever.
What exactly is a digitalisation strategy? Put simply digitalisation is the application of technologies to aid in new, and existing, processes. A strategy to do so, would include an understanding of what can be improved, how to improve it, what can be used to improve it, and when it should be done by.
For example, if you are au fait with ITESOFT you might be exploring finance process digitalisation, and therefore understand the issues with manual input of invoice data into your system. You would seek the best solution (automated capture) and go to market for a supplier. This is one small step towards digitalisation of your finance department but is usually the best place to start.
So why should you look to digitalise your business now more than ever?
1. To Get with The Times
If you don’t have a burning desire to explore new solutions to old problems, perhaps you are part of the latter.
With the growing rate of technology even more exciting things are available to us each year. You ask Siri and Alexa for all your answers at home, so why not in the office?
As we become more environmentally aware (and damaging) as a species, maybe it’s time to think about why you spend your days going through paper files and date stamping incoming post. There must be a better way, and there is.
Automation of repetitive tasks is not only cost efficient, it will vastly improve your employees lives and end their nightmares of never ending “incoming mail” piles requiring processing.
2. To Evaluate Your Processes
Since this is the first step of creating a digitalisation strategy, it should also be something your business carries out periodically, as changes in people, process, legislation, and technology may ignite the fuse to transform your processes giving you huge benefits – such as cost savings.
This will give you insight into not only what your employees are doing with the time for which you pay them but will also make you realise how easier life in your company could be, with the aid of modern, digital tools.
3. Understanding the Value of Your Department
Once you have untapped the knowledge of your important, complex, processes you can start to put together a picture of what your department is worth to the company, and how to improve that figure.
In the case of accounts payable, you could improve this number by acquiring early payment discounts with your suppliers, or even by reducing time spent on menial tasks.
Once you have this figure, you can use this to back up a business plan for any digitalisation that will improve the value even more.
4. To Keep Staff Happy
Show your team that you are on the ball when it comes to changes in best practice in your field. If they know you are knowledgeable about this, they will trust you and learn from you themselves, adding value to their time at work and thus increasing satisfaction.
No one wants to be completing menial, paper-based tasks in 2019. Give your team something new to learn, whilst explaining the benefits.
Cut down on unnecessary phone calls by increasing transparency and digitalising feedback to customers/suppliers through an online portal.
5. To Comply with Legislative Changes
As time goes on, so does the law.
2019 is already seeing changes to the way we look to process invoices, and it’s not even here yet!
Legislation is constantly being scrutinised and abridged, this means you need to be up to date with any ratifications these may have on your department.
From next year, a new legislation “Making Tax Digital for VAT” will come into effect, causing AP departments everywhere to scurry about for a digitalised solution, or revert to the dark ages of paper and duplicate payments…
What are WE doing to help? ITESOFT have ran multiple webinars looking into this legislation and how it will affect accounts payable teams in the UK. You can watch the webinar replay through the link below or via our YouTube channel.
Watch the Webinar Replay Today!
Webinar Replay: Making Tax Digital for VAT