Have you ever tried to forget your name? Go ahead – try it… I will wait.
Can’t do it, can you? Trying to forget your name is impossible. I can forget where I put my keys, or what I was doing when I walked from one room to another, but Ican’t forget my name.
I think people have the same probelm when it comes to forgetting about paper in AP. I was talking to a group this week in Cosa Mesa, CA, about the 8 Pitfalls (www.8pitfalls.com). While discussing changing a paper AP process to an automated process, I asked the group of Controllers and CFO their opinion on what makes change so difficult. I got a very interesting list of responses:
- Had better things to do (AP wasn’t a priority)
- No Need – No Desire
- Love the paper
- Don’t understand the possiblities
Now – that last one got me… don’t know the possiblities. I wrote a lot about this in The 8 Pitfalls book. If there is no understanding of what is possible, then there will be no movement away from paper. In chapter 3 “Getting Organized” I explain that there are 3 types of projects:
- Rehab – the company takes their paper process and makes it electronic
- New Construction – the company starts from scratch on their process
- Hybrid – a combination of the Rehab and New.
Having been involved with (personally) 89 automation projects and having helped on 150 (or so) more, I have found that most companies desire to do a Rehab project, but after some convincing (by me) they shift to more of a Hybrid project. Very rarely do I find a company that is interested in starting all over with their AP process…
I would suggest highly that you start all over, because what is possible with automation (tracking, visibility, reporting, labor savings…) is impossible with paper.
It seems that people can not understand what AP would be like without paper. For them, understanding the possibliites is very much like trying to forget their name.
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For more information go to www.newwayap.com