Communication in the Digital Age!
Many organisations who complete a Finance Transformation of their Purchase to Pay (P2P) process can struggle with Change Adoption. The users of the P2P process fail to play their part and the Accounts Payable team deal with the inefficiencies at the back end of the process.
Finance Transformation always involves the humble supplier invoice and I have helped many Accounts Payable and Procurement teams work better together to deliver a streamlined P2P process. We can work with the Accounts Payable team, the Procurement team, all the relevant stakeholders but what makes or breaks a Purchase to Pay Transformation?
This is where your Communication Strategy converts to successful Change Adoption. If you don't have an effective Communication Strategy, then you have little hope of your changes being adopted and your investment will not deliver the expected Benefits.
The Communication Strategy has 3 Golden Rules:
1. Audience - Know and Respect your Audience
2. Message - Clear, concise, easy to remember
3. Delivery - Tell them, Tell them, and Tell them again!
Baseline everyone involved in the P2P process. There will be internal and external stakeholders, the suppliers, category leads, purchase order raisers, approvers and goods receipting staff, who can all impact the process, so define your Audience and what is expected of them. Then tailor your Communication Strategy accordingly.
Keep it simple, a memorable slogan that you can build a Campaign on. Imagine you a Political Leader and you must sell your Policies to the Electorate. Your Message should fit on a poster, be clear, concise and create no ambiguity. The prime example being "No PO - No Pay"
This is where success and failure face each other in the mirror. You know your Audience, have a great Message but you fail to effectively deliver it and its just another lost Election slogan! My advice is to first get the basics right and then let the Digital Age do the rest:
1. Finance Transformation Leaders stand out. They stand up, speak up and stand out! Lead by example and live and breather your Change
2. Go Old School and put your Posters up - visibility and repetition are important
3. Tour like a Rock star! Visit your Audience, respect them and speak to them about why the change is necessary, what it will deliver and what you need them to do
That's the basics steps but with remote working staff, hybrid working patterns and empty offices how does the Digital Age help?
If we harness Technology to deliver the Message then we can achieve repetition, convenience, and user action. Utilising email and text to corporate accounts and phones is one option but the most effective way to use Technology to deliver a change is by video.
Record your Message and deliver it to all users, at a stroke you just demonstrated your personal commitment, by making a personal connection and helped the User understand and action the Change required.
Author: Michael Ryan
With 25 years' experience Transforming Finance across multiple Sectors as a Consultant and as a Finance Transformation Leader, Michael Ryan is uniquely placed to advise Clients on creating a World Class Finance Team. Call him now on 0203 1466878