Vendor Onboarding in 2023: Three Predictions
Part One of a Three Part Series
I have a bold declaration for 2023: it will be the year of the perfect vendor file.
I know, I know. Perfection in anything is rarely possible, but hear me out. While the strategic importance of the vendor master file is no secret to professionals dealing with the relentless pace of vendor onboarding and maintenance needs every day, at PaymentWorks we think it’s time to elevate their work and shout from the rooftops. We want your entire organization to appreciate and honor the importance – to every nook and cranny of your business- of the vendor master file.
Why? In simple terms: what comes out of your ERP and vendor file is only as good as what goes in. And when you don’t respect the process around the inputs, you spend a lot of time paying for it with crappy outputs.
We ran the idea of the strategic importance of the vendor master file by several of our friends and partners to find out what they feel is in store for vendor onboarding and management in 2023. Will perfection ever be achieved? Or is it enough to have the goal of perfection be your BHAG? Several key themes emerged—enough for a three part blog series. Herewith is blog number one.
Yes, we mean vendor onboarding and maintenance.
Digital transformation for finance and procurement departments certainly isn’t new; invoice and disbursement automation have likely been in place at your organization for years. Yet the way data gets input into the ERP, and subsequently into those platforms is still likely largely manual. It’s a person at your organization still collecting W9s, remit and banking information via email, and typing that information into your ERP. With this manual set up, the entire foundation of your P2P process is shaky, at best. 2023 is well past the time for automation to come to vendor onboarding.
In addition to providing clean, accurate data, automation in vendor onboarding also carries another level of importance to your org: security. Rahul Chaudhari from TCS commented: “Cloud technologies add more security to the process of vendor management. For companies struggling with handling security and controlling complexity, cloud based service delivery helps them as the number of vendors rise.” Chaudhari continued, “Automation also ensures compliance processes are addressed, billing and tax forms are completed, and vendors are onboarded into payable processes, including with acceptable electronic payment options.”
If an organization hasn’t yet digitally modernized their vendor onboarding processes, it will be increasingly difficult to keep up with the pace of business.”
Brian Townsend, VP Vendor Enrollment at Corpay
Our product strategist Gracie Mabie concurs. “Far too many risks exist in manual onboarding processes. Fraud, compliance, and simple mistakes can all impact the integrity of your P2P machinery and find your organization on the wrong end of a compliance issue or fraud scam. Automation will become absolutely critical in 2023 for organizations tasked with locking down their processes to ensure audits are met with success.”
Chaudhari from TCS, concluded, “By keeping data in sync across systems without human intervention creates a more robust business continuity plan which will strengthen your supply chain.”
But it’s not just security at stake here. It’s the actual productivity of your team. The headcount problem is real, but the business needs haven’t changed.
Brian Townsend, VP Vendor Enrollment at Corpay, makes the case for automation in 2023 by focusing on staffing. “Economic pressures will continue to mount in the coming year. Organizations will simply have to be more productive with less headcount. If an organization hasn’t yet digitally modernized their vendor onboarding processes, it will be increasingly difficult to keep up with the pace of business.”
Townsend at Corpay isn’t alone in predicting a sharper shift when it comes to headcount in 2023. Sean Neal, Business Development Executive for Digital Transformation & Technology at Withum, counsels to make the case for automation a two-pronged argument: “Automation in place during a downward trend not only reduces the risk of fraud, but it has a direct impact on the bottom line without having to hire additional staff.”
With those smaller staffs, automation of repetitive and risky tasks will open the door for maximum productivity which should not only influence job satisfaction and retention, but will also build business controls to keep your vendor master file locked down and clean.
Automation for vendor onboarding and maintenance will be prioritized by organizations of all sizes in 2023.
Read Part 2: The Final Manual Hold Out in P2P Will Finally Demand to Be Automated
Read Part 3: Vendor Master Data Management Will Matter to the Entire Organization
We’d love to walk through your process with you and talk about security, compliance, efficiency and sleeping better at night.
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Boston, MA 02116