In my book The 8 Pitfalls of Accounts Payable Automation, I wrote that the process from decision, purchase, implementation and go live was like riding a roller coaster. In the spirit of this article there are 5 ups and downs during the starting and ending process of change that you will go through with Automating Accounts Payable.
Ups and Downs
Up 1 – I have found that people are naturally excited about making the decision to Automate AP. There is a certain amount of patting on the back and glad-handing. At this point you tell me how happy they are with the decision and how much you appreciate my help. You ask me if I am a sports fan, because you have some tickets to give away.
Down 1 – Then when you see the contract for the first time, it hits you that what you are about ready to do is going to be a permanent change. You might not return my calls or emails as quickly, and you begin to question our relationship.
Up 2 – Once the contract has been agreed to and you are happy with the terms, you get a feeling that you are doing the right thing and are excited to get started. You and I are once again friends and you ask me how my kids are…
Down 2 – As the project gets scoped and your realize the work ahead of you and you come to a personal understanding that you have taken on another project on top of your current workload and you could care less how my kids are doing….
Up 3 – As you forget the life you once had, and settle into a new normal, all of the things in the sales process that were promised and you see your paperless professional life start to take shape. You now understand your codes, your environment, your approval processes and it is awesome!
Down 3 – With all of the planning and testing coming to an end the next phase hits you like 10,000 lost invoices… you now have to introduce this to the end users. Yep those people who think invoices and their approvals can be done “when there is time” not because it a financial obligation to the company. You and I know have meetings off site at a bar (I pay of course).
Up 4 – The first training class is upon you and guess what…. it’s not that bad. After a little bit of anxious moments to start the initial group is warming up nicely and seeing benefits for themselves. Yea! You and I go back to the bar to celebrate (I still pay).
Down 4 – There are sooooo many questions. You can’t believe that these people even took the training. Not just the internal users, questions from leadership and vendors. Oh why did you ever do this, you ask yourself. You and I are good, because my work is over, but you can’t ever remember what life was like when you used to have peace and quiet.
Up 5 – Now 60 days after go live. No calls or questions, the paper is gone, everyone is working well with the system and you have achieved your goals. You get a call from to me see how everything was going. We talk about how you can’t believe how much you stressed out during the process, and the pain in change doesn’t feel so bad. Overall you are very pleased with the process and outcome…
Down 5 – …I say great… “What do you think about Automating AR?” – Click… hello? hello?
Want to know more? Buy My Books!
The Argument to Automate – How Innovation Can INSPIRE Not Fire – click here to buy
The 8 Pitfalls of Accounts Payable Automation – click here to buy