Why doesn’t your ERP prevent failures in your financial processes?*

Sinal vermelho dos processos financeiros em ERP

Errors in financial processes have an immediate impact on business. That’s why companies usually decide to invest in ERPs (Enterprise Resource Planning). They believe that will be enough for the processes to happen in a structured, efficient way.

However, even with solid systems like SAP, Oracle, Sage, you still may have unpaid invoices, which would result in interest; accounts receivable left uncharged, which would impact your cash flow; approval flows might not always be followed, resulting in double work; and customers – internal or external – may be dissatisfied with an eventual delay or failure to return to financial requests.

Why all these problems, even with an ERP?

I talk to approximately 15 managers a week, learning about their processes, in order to evaluate together if Pipefy can meet their needs. In most cases, we hear one of the following problems:

1. Fragmentation in receiving requests 

The requester doesn’t always have access to the system. Requests are often accepted via email or other ways such as meetings, internal messaging channels, telephone etc. Because of that, some requests might go unnoticed, and, even if they don’t, someone has to go out of their way to manually introduce the information into the software.

The requester doesn’t always have access to the system. Requests are often accepted via email or other ways such as meetings, internal messaging channels, telephone etc. Because of that, some requests might go unnoticed, and, even if they don’t, someone has to go out of their way to manually introduce the information into the software

2. No standard in receiving the request

If all the information you need to start the process isn’t submitted, you’ll have another bottleneck. You’ll have to return for the missing information, which is a waste of time. Even though some ERPs do offer the alternative for external input, they don’t always allow you to customize the necessary fields regarding essential or mandatory information. Or, if they do accept customization, it is extremely expensive, which makes it impractical, or even impossible.

3. Separate spreadsheet control is still necessary

To get better visibility of the steps of the process and its status, many teams still use spreadsheets. ERP often doesn’t offer an overview of the workflow and, as highlighted earlier, when it does, it can be very expensive. The spreadsheet is open to filling mistakes: formulas, texts, numbers etc.

Planilhas ainda são necessárias em processos financeiros ERP

4. No record/log of activities and documents 

There is no control over the process information: price, approvals, responsible parties, dates, etc. Because of that, the managers don’t know who completed each step. And when there is an audit process, this problem gets even more obvious.

5. Inefficient communication with internal and external requesters 

It can be unsustainable to manage agile responses to emails and remember to report on each step of the process.

Ineficiência na comunicação nos processos financeiros ERP

6. Lack of indicators on process management

The ERP doesn’t always offer you the possibility to get customizable reports with your process data. That makes you unable to access expenses by area, by a requester, purchase approved by the supplier, late payments, SLAs, process lead-time, etc.


Procurement

Accounts Payable

Accounts Receivable

Expenses Reimbursement

Information Loss

Requests, Approvals, POs, Contracts, Invoices, NFe (BR)

POs, Invoices, Receipts and Proof of Payments.

Sales Orders, Contracts, Invoices

Requests, Approvals, Receipts

Missed Deadlines

As it lacks visibility around requests and  invoices, they end up missing internal SLAs and paying fines

Late payments, leading to fines

Increasing Overdue

Unmet SLAs, degrading perspective of internal customers

Uncentralized Execution

Moving back and forth between Email, Excel, Slack and ERP

Moving back and forth between Email, Excel, and ERP

Moving back and forth between Email, Excel, CRM, and ERP

Moving back and forth between Email, Excel, ERP and Drive (for pictures)

Money Loss

Unseen saving opportunities and fines

Fines

Unresponsiveness upon overdue

Fraud gaps due to archaic set up

Unstructured Information

Mostly open fields, with no validations, leading to wrong values, names, dates, approvers. Making reporting hard

Mostly open fields, with no validations, leading to wrong values, names, dates, approvers. Making reporting hard

Mostly open fields, with no validations, leading to wrong values, names, dates, approvers. Making reporting hard

Mostly open fields, with no validations, leading to wrong values, names, dates, approvers. Making reporting hard.

Unsatisfied Customers

Asking for information already provided. No visibility upon request, delays and need for follow-up

Asking for information already provided. Hiring delays, affecting requesters and vendors

Receiving follow up/duplicate emails having paid the invoice

Asking for information already provided

Pipefy’s research on problems faced in various financial processes

As we’ve seen so far, what really happens is that the company ends up having to adapt to the ERP system and not the other way around.

Then what is the answer?

First of all, the ideal would be for us to know your specific situation, but, in most cases, it is possible to connect Pipefy to your ERP via API. Pipefy acts as the conductor of your processes, collaborating with the ERP, allowing the manager to:

  1. Standardize the way to accept requests and the way to execute them;
  2. Centralize files, activity log and message exchange in the card;
  3. Connect and automate actions between financial processes. For example, when a purchase request is approved in a process, an Account Payable is automatically created in another;
  4. Set up alerts and specific notification for new demands, set deadlines, SLAs and approval requests, giving finance professionals more time to focus on their work;
  5. Access a dashboard that offers real-time indicators of your operation.

And the coolest thing about working to improve the efficiency of our financial processes is how easy it is for the team and the managers to help our Customer Success team to calculate the platform ROI ?

If your financial operation relates to these challenges, we will be happy to assist you. Register to Pipefy and ask to speak to a consultant.

* Written by Bruna Marinelli, Accounts Executive at Pipefy.

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