2023 is here... And with it will come exciting developments for payment solutions, going into the new year and beyond.
But what role will technology play? It’s a big subject with many different talking points – talking points that bring about interesting questions.
Such as, does the corporate payment world need a whole new way to pay?
Is it essential to steer away from the manual and towards a more effortless solution?
And simply, what exactly is the secret to innovations in payment?
These questions are vital to companies now more than ever. With economic uncertainty looming, it’s critical that businesses are on board with seamless processes, allowing faster response times and more strategic decisions when it comes to the disruption that lies ahead.
With all that in mind, we invited some industry experts to an online discussion, to give us a well-rounded view of what’s coming.
- David Hitchins– Procurement and Supply Chain Expert.
- Lourens Stamhuis – MD of THL Pay.
- Soren Hammer – CEO of Mazepay.
- Darren Blair- Senior Director, Strategic Bank & Treasury Partnerships at Coupa.
We wanted to know: what are the challenges our customers are facing daily? And what are the solutions they can carry with them into 2023?
The full webinar is invaluable. With facts, figures, advice and tips that are not only interesting, but of the utmost importance to our own companies.
Here’s how it all panned out.
How can we ensure all stakeholders’ needs are met?
The Holy Trinity of finance, procurement, and the end user. Is it possible to make sure all their needs are met?
The thing is, their payment needs are often at odds with each other.
For example, procurement may need to ensure the optimal supplier is used and have spend analysis over time, while finance needs to make sure that spend is controlled and that the correct approval process is in place.
In order for a seamless operation that drives real results to exist, all stakeholders need to be on the same page, with their needs met.
How can we make that happen?
Darren Blair (Senior Director, Strategic Bank & Treasury Partnerships at Coupa), explained it’s all in the systems we use.
- Embrace comprehensive solutions
Time-consuming and cumbersome systems prevent companies from managing their spend effectively. In fact, over 90% of suppliers say they experience late payments from their business customers.
They need to gain back control by getting on board with new solutions, allowing complete transparency in real-time.
- No PO, No Pay
With tailored workflows, custom settings and business requirements all made configurable on a new user-friendly platform, it makes 100% automated compliance available by default. Gaining back full control and visibility of their business spending department-wide.
- Introduce flexibility of payments
Darren Blair explains, “With business requirements, tailored workflows and custom settings all being configurable within business spend management platforms, supported by a simple user-friendly experience, it’s possible should customers mandate it, to operate a “No PO, No Pay” as a preferred practice with 100% automated compliance available by default - this is something we promote as a best practice for organizations keen to have full control and visibility over their business spending.”
Want to know more? Watch the full webinar on-demand.
Procure-to-pay: Making it happen.
It seems that procure-to-pay practices are where the answers lie.
David Hitchins says, “The answer lies in better data and processes next to excellent communication and easy-to-understand-and-apply policies.”
The thing is, the use of data is important, and often undervalued.
According to Darren Blair, “Community insights and real-time data analytics are often not taken into consideration by organizations who have implemented new processes or capabilities.
For example, by leveraging this rich data, businesses can easily identify which suppliers accept cards as a form of payment, allowing them to include this ever-growing digital form of payment in the organization's broader supplier payment strategy.”
Other ways to implement more streamlined processes are:
- Virtual cards
Clients will be able to defer payments to improve working capital management, while giving themselves real-time visibility and insight into daily spending activities. They can also reduce daily transactions by up to 80%, increase the speed of payment run approvals and decrease the invoice settlement cycle.
- Suppliers are important
It’s imperative to consider and engage clients as part of any payment strategy. For many companies, their payment systems will become a vital procurement tool, coming ahead of finance automation. By keeping this knowledge in mind, you can make sure that your system not only keeps the finance department happy, but it also becomes highly effective at supply management and happy suppliers.
- Keep the user in mind
It’s becoming a necessity to bring employees to the right buying channels. By using real-time smart data, companies can make it happen, combining both process and payment and allowing virtual cards to make their impact.
The Big Picture: what does the future hold?
According to Peter, “The future lies in software-based, intelligent automation.”
How do companies achieve this in their own organizations?
Here are some tips:
- Avoid expensive and complex solutions. Lourens Stamhuis (MD of THL Pay), says, “We’re already seeing the need for these types of simple-to-use solutions to optimize the bill spend, to get your company ready for January 1st.”
- Consider the entire process, including all stakeholders, to get a true picture of your company’s needs. Soren Hammer (CEO of Mazepay) says “It’s about the whole process – not just the payment - becoming smarter and smarter throughout the organization by learning from the organization as well as other organizations by using ML and AI.”
- Put buying power into the hands of those who need it. By implementing systems company-wide, giving customers access to comprehensive spend management capabilities.
- By introducing overall visibility, both finance and procurement can share the load of spend management with spending practices and real-time cash flow access – improving liquidity, reducing risk and enabling growth.
There’s more to find out. Watch the full webinar on-demand.
- The Holy Trinity can be overcome by integrating an easy-to-use solution.
- Optimize the ‘procure-to-pay’ practice. Bring the employees to the right buying channel; support them with smart data and virtual cards for payment.
- Consider the whole process, making sure you talk to your finance and procurement departments and take the end user into account.
For more info and essential tips, make sure you sign up to the full expert discussion on-demand.