I have been writing a lot about out of office because we are getting ready for what I like to call “vacation season”. That’s right the time that we all look forward to, and if you are anything like me you will spend a lot of money, get sun burned, have a great time and come back thinking you need… well… a vacation. That’s right a vacation from your vacation.
Out of the Office
Now-a-days you can still work and not have to be in the office. Yahoo was famous for its flex work schedule, it was a big thing that attracted a lot of people to Yahoo in the beginning (the stock options too). Recently the CEO of Yahoo has expressed that their flex schedule has gotten out of hand and needs to be drawn back in. When you think of out of office, most people think of Outlook and that wonderful feature of automatic notifications, but being out of the office means so much more than that. Because of how we work in the modern world expectations have changed.
People expect answers. I think we have trained people to expect answer in this modern world quickly… very quickly. Regardless of us being in or out of the office. The entire idea of letting people know you are out of the office is based on setting proper expectation of when you are going to get back to them.
Where out of the office is a state or situation, mobility is considerably different. When it comes to Accounts Payable Automation mobility means a different way of doing business. Here is something to consider.
Once automated the paper will be gone and stored in a centralized database. In the old world paper had to be housed, and when something is housed it also had to be guarded. I had a conversation about software security with an IT person once. He didn’t like the software I was proposing to his company because it didn’t have double authentication. I completely understood his concern, but I asked him… “today, where are the invoices and how are they stored.” He said, “Well, they are in the filing room.” I then asked him, “how many locks are on the filing room.” which he said, “one”. To which I replied, “how many people have a copy or access to a copy of the key” he said, “I have no idea”. He didn’t come around immediately (I think there was a little bit of pride) but he eventually realized that his perception of security needed to change, and that standing guard of a room full of paper wasn’t all that important.
Giving up the old perception that things (AP) have to be in one central location and the decision-making can be spread out and secured by software creates real mobility, which in turn allows for people to do things for themselves, like batch a stack of invoices for an audit and the accounting staff can stay out of it or have the auditor do it themselves. That’s mobility.
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