Here is a feedback on setting up a source to pay solution (this applies regardless of the solution chosen). The adage of La Fontaine: “slow and steady wins the race” could not be better applied than in this case. Here’s why:
Preparation is the key to success (as Alexander Graham Bell said); on each project, each pre-sales cycle, in our methodology… we keep repeating it. Getting ready means :
- Clearly define the target processes
- Everyone is aligned with these processes
- A strong transformation program sponsored by top management
- The deployment strategy is based on ROI expectations (efficiency, productivity, gains…)
- IT is informed and prepared because we will need them (integrations, SSO…)
- Finally, data is ready! And that’s definitely the black spot.
In fact, we no longer discuss that the data is the key. Especially when we are heading towards a new wave of digitization (AI, RPA, predictive analytics..). Let’s see it positively: ” quality in, quality out”. It is therefore essential to start at a minimum to clean up your supplier database, especially if there are several bases within the company that will be consolidated in a source to pay tool.
Organizations are looking for the most powerful solution, which covers the entire purchasing process and even more. It is indeed important to select a system that can scale up with the maturity of the company. But that doesn’t mean “deploy everything at the same time.” No organization, even the most structured, can absorb the global deployment of a source to pay. It is mandatory to split the project in phases, depending on ROI priorities and the company’s strategy. Still the famous “crawl, walk, run “.
It is also necessary to accept that some things may not be automated, or at least that automating them could cost more than the expected gain.
In conclusion, the foundations of a stable, sustainable solution that offers the expected benefits are obtained through a complete preparation work and a suitable deployment strategy.