Heading into the new financial year provides a great opportunity to review many aspects of your business, including internal workflows, data management and payments integration. Here’s three tips from global payment solutions specialists, AFEX, to position yourself for success in FY19.
Global trade is thriving, and many Australian businesses are putting international expansion firmly on the agenda. Yet handling the complexities of going global, like managing international payments and ensuring all your systems integrate and work seamlessly together, can be fraught with hidden costs, risks and administrative headaches.
AFEX research found 38% of Australian businesses said their profitability has been impacted by payments issues in the last 12 months. Without the right strategy, workflow and systems in place for payments handling, your business could be left vulnerable.
The good news is that there are innovative and digital solutions readily available to enhance your customer journey and user experience and make payments a simple and efficient process, without a huge investment in additional resources or separate infrastructure.
Here are three tips on how to best prepare your business in the coming financial year.
Preserve your data integrity
In modern organisations, data is being created and consumed at unprecedented levels. Data should feed directly into your ability to understand your customers and empower you to make important decisions based on their experiences with your business. It is therefore essential to ensure your data is accurate, reliable and trustworthy.
To do this, establish clear roles and responsibilities to ensure accountability for data integrity. Your business will then need to agree a process to minimise the potential for error when inputting or importing data in your front and back-end systems.
Once this is established, it is important to clean up, validate or refresh your data and run regular data integrity reports to reduce billing or payments issues and eliminate customer satisfaction issues from occurring. Your clean and accurate data-set can then be used to assist with better business decision-making, improve customer service and help with any compliance and audit requirements.
Review your current workflow
When planning for the year ahead, a good place to start is with a quick audit of your current business workflow. Analyse the software and applications your business uses and assess whether the components work well together and are delivering a positive experience for customers.
Most commonly, businesses struggle with determining where to integrate payments capability into their existing enterprise resource planning (ERF) and business software, particularly when expanding operations or going global.
It can be beneficial to involve the workflow consulting experts at this early stage. Not only can they offer an objective view on the current workflow but can also suggest simple solutions to major business hurdles through a BPaaS (Business Process as a Service) lens.
Utilise a tailored solution
Once you better understand your business workflow and what the customer journey and user experience requirements are, there’s a range of solutions available to streamline issuing, managing and processing invoices for global vendors.
From online options which automate payments, to plug-ins which integrate with your existing software, there are scaled solutions for all types of business needs and sizes. Shop around and gauge what’s on offering – it’s worth investing in a tailored solution to ensure it serves the exact purpose required.
Ultimately, the solution should empower you to provide the user experience that your customers expect and require, within the workflow and processes if your existing business systems.
As a business owner, it can be hard to relinquish control of every aspect of your company. However, as FY19 gets underway, selecting expert partners and business advisers to support your growth is crucial, freeing you up to focus on the things that really matter – like successfully growing your business.
Darren Cook, Head of Payment Solutions & Integrated Partnerships.