Be Prepared for the Important Questions

Last month, we blogged about the importance of customers asking AP automation vendors the tough questions up front. This time, we’re turning the tables on you, the customer. As vendors, there’s a lot we don’t know about your environment, your aspirations and your organization. We spend a lot of our time (and your time) getting answers to questions that are fundamental to delivering the best solution.

The 10% rule

With the right information, we can move very quickly. In our experience, the time it takes to do a full implementation is about 1/10th the time of the evaluation. Think about that for a minute. That equates to a 10 month evaluation, followed by a one month implementation. Why not a one month evaluation, followed by a one month implementation? Wouldn’t that be a better use of everyone’s time?

A vendor needs timely answers to these important questions:

The important questions

What prompted your company to begin evaluating an AP Automation solution?
What is your desired end state and expected outcome?
Which ERP are you running?
Do you have plans to change your ERP or move to a cloud version of the product?
How many AP resources do you have processing invoices today?
Across how many locations? Is your AP processing centralized or decentralized?
How many invoices do you process annually?
What is the total dollar value of your invoices per year?
Calculate the Ratio.
What is the ratio between electronic and paper invoices received?
Describe your approval routing process.
How many individuals are involved? How are approvals handled when individuals are out of the office or on vacation?
Incentivize early payments
Are you currently taking advantage of early payment discounts?
Have you faced any challenges with fraudulent or incorrect invoices being paid?
How often does that happen?
Who is on your core team?
Who are the project team members and key decision makers involved in your AP Automation project? What is their commitment and level of involvement in the evaluation process?
What result are you looking for?
What is the most important result you expect to achieve by implementing an AP automation solution?