Pitfall #4 - AP Automation for Dynamics

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Today’s topic is Pitfall #4 of Accounts Payable Automation for Microsoft Dynamics users. Just to recap- the first pitfall was to know your company, the second was to find the right service provider, and the third was to get organized. As we move through the half-way point, the fourth is about executing the project.

What the 4th is Not!

When I wrote The 8 Pitfalls of Accounts Payable Automation, I didn’t want to write a how-to book. So as I write “execute the project,” I can understand that you might not want to get any additional project management advice. It’s not like that. I wanted to write a book that had real world advice that you, as an experienced professional, can transfer into real world strategies.

The System of Record

The 4th pitfall does have some general advice, but one of the biggest strategies that I write about is the notion that your Dynamics ERP must be the system of record. Now, I don’t think this will come as any surprise and this advice isn’t too ground breaking, but if you don’t give this idea proper attention, you are going to be in big trouble.

Why Is It Important?

The answer is competition. If the Dynamics ERP is not the system of record, you will naturally introduce competition. There are two things to know when it comes to your Dynamics ERP and AP Automation provider competing.

2 Things

I have seen multiple automation disasters that started with good intentions and ended with 2 systems trying to electronically enter an AP transaction into the accounting system. Here is an example:

You employ an AP Automation service provider that enters an invoice into AP. There is an open purchase order (PO) that -- when 3-way matched--will enter the same invoice into AP. If you look back at that sentence, the competition is between the automation system and the PO system. Their end goals are to put an AP transaction into the accounting system.

Here are a few other places AP Automation and Dynamics ERP can compete:

  • Check Numbers
  • Cash Management
  • Job Cost – Project Accounting
  • Financial Reporting
  • Aging
  • Vendor Management

What Does This Mean For ME?

If you have created a project where there is competition between Dynamics ERP and your AP Automation provider, you are in a difficult spot. In order for the project to go off without a hitch, everything has to work together. The Accounts Payable Automation system should handle getting rid of the paper, speeding up the process and entering an AP transaction into the AP model of your Dynamics ERP, and your Dynamics ERP should take care of the rest.

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2 thoughts on “Pitfall #4 - AP Automation for Dynamics”

  1. Yes. For Microsoft Dynamics' users, it's important to find an AP Automation software provider that already integrates with their version of Dynamics (and preferably has referenceable customers).

  2. "If you have created a project where there is competition between Dynamics ERP and your AP Automation provider, you are in a difficult spot." Totally agree. Seems to me the best way to avoid this competition is to work with one single provider for both systems.

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