This document outlines 5 steps which are essential to ensure the success of your order-to-cash process digital transformation journey.
Digital or technological transformation of any business function will never be a one-stop train ride to ultimate efficiency. Transformation is like a long car journey that stops and starts, with pit-holes in the road and fraught emotions both from those driving and those just along for the ride. It is also a journey on which it is highly likely when you finally get to where you thought you wanted to go you now find there is a better destination further down the road.
However, as you embark on your order-to-cash process transformation journey there are several steps you can take to make the ride smoother and heading towards success:
1 / Establish clear transformation objectives and KPI’s
Establishing what you want to achieve from your order-to-cash process transformation project and how you are going to measure its success seems so obvious but is so often overlooked. Set clear objectives and establish KPI’s that will measure the success of your order to cash transformation project against these objectives. Meaningful KPI’s include:
|Order to cash transformation KPI’s|
|Improved cash flow|
|Improved productivity of credit control department|
(call volumes, number of customers contacted)
|Reduction in volume of disputes|
|Speed of dispute resolution|
|Customer experience review|
|Reduced cost to serve|
|Speed of customer onboarding process|
2 / Communication
The overall key to successful transformation is communication – although the transformation is itself digital, the people who have to deliver it, work with it once it is completed and provide the support needed for it to be a success are all human. Don’t tell them you are just popping to the shops when you are in fact embarking on a road-trip from Land’s End to John O’Groats. If everyone is briefed, ready and prepared for the journey ahead you are far more likely to reach your destination with less resistance.
3 / Preparation
Whilst digital transformation within order-to-cash will provide the insight and understanding to reduce DSO, improve process efficiency and ultimately support business growth, this new visibility will, in the short-term uncover issues that require resolution. If a business is to engage on successful business transformation, they must have a plan in place to ensure they can resolve existing issues in order to move forward.
4 / Review and Respond
Once implemented it is key to review whether your new order to cash system being used as it is intended and to understand it is not, the reasons why. Ensure you have the strategies in place to support user adoption post-delivery – it is highly unlikely everyone is going to immediately embrace a whole new way of working but don’t let your lack of knowledge over how the system is being used be the cause of your transformation failure. A system will give you that critical information of how to call the right person and the right time, but if the calls are not made your team will be no better than working off historic spreadsheets.
- Develop and implement a post-implementation user adoption review process
- Build targets tied to system adoption into employee performance review process
- Develop strategies to support adoption
- Be prepared to let people go who cannot adjust to change.
5 / Re-evaluate
As stated at the outset, transformation is a journey not a destination, it is therefore critical as you go through the process to continue to use the new-found transparency, data insights and analysis to continue to improve your operational efficiency. True efficiency is unobtainable – as market force and conditions continually change and evolve so must our processes in response. The world we live in now where voice is still the customers preferred method of communication may not be the world of the future. Is only through continual review and re-evaluation of the data digital transformation of order-to-cash provides, can we aim for success.
The 4D Contact team have extensive experience supporting global businesses on their order-to-cash transformation journey. We provide a flexible outsourced receivables management solution which can help support your in-house team during the transformation period with great success at providing creative solutions to support user adoption when teams have found change difficult. Check out our Travis Perkins and Schindler case studies for more information.
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A C-Suite executive’s guide to Delivering successful order-to-cash transformation
A review of the considerations and tactics critical to achieving successful transformation within your order-to-cash functionDownload