Jason Herrington

Jason Herrington

Director, Finance Transformation
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Jason Herrington is the Director of Finance Transformation at HighRadius and is a former financial operations practitioner with over two decades of international and domestic experience specializing in the world of accounts receivable and accounts payable.

Session Summary:

Takeaway 1:
How to avoid a finance digital transformation failure?
Key Points
  • Encourage User Adoption – The A/R team should be convinced to utilize the technology solution to conduct daily operations and made to understand how it will benefit them.
  • Track Performance against Benchmarks – A/R leaders should define the right performance benchmarks, measure against those benchmarks, and course-correct to meet them.
  • Monitor the key leading and lagging O2C indicators to make necessary course corrections and hence ensure that your value realization materializes.
Takeaway 2:
Change Management: A critical component of the transformation project
Key Points
  • There must be a diligent focus on change management to ensure the success of the projects and to achieve the value proposition.
  • Start with developing a strategy and align it with your leadership team, supervisors, and staff level groups and identify with them as to how the automation solution will solve their challenges.
  • Reinforce the transformation by providing tools and training to the operational team members.
Takeaway 3:
The Three-Perspectives for A/R Digital Transformation
Key Points
  • End-User Perspective – Identify the challenges the team faces and try to improve them.
  • Customer Perspective – Learn the specific needs and consumption habits of varied customer segments.
  • Business Perspective – Understand the business goals to track if the project is heading in the right way.
Takeaway 4:
The dotOne Performance A/R Value Realization Framework
Key Points
  • Real-time monitoring of indicators for proactive correction: Indicators such as the Product Usage Metrics, and Analyst Performance Metrics serve as early indicators to check whether digital transformation is creating a positive impact on the process.
  • Benchmarking KPIs against best-in-class peer performance: Integrated benchmarking helps compare KPIs and business value metrics against best-in-class competitor firms to compare and improve your O2C function.
  • Global A/R and customer dashboards for real-time visibility: Review the performance of different regions and business units against planned goals in a more visual and organized manner with the ability to pinpoint problem areas and individual customers.
[ 0:07 ] Jason Herrington:

All right, everybody, thanks for taking the time. I really appreciate you guys tuning into this session, it’s you know going down the path of engaging in a digital transformation and actualizing, the value proposition or the return on the investment obviously is critical for any of the stakeholders. And obviously, if you’re a leader bringing that into the organization, your credibility as a leader is obviously at stake as well. We are going to start off with just some observations in the marketplace. A lot has changed in the last 18 months, I think we can all agree there CFOs, managing challenging environmental conditions impacting the P&L, I’ve shifted their focus to what they can control the balance sheet. As such operational functions such as credit collections and cash application have moved to the forefront, you know, questions such as Where are the bottlenecks in cash? Why are bad debts accelerating? What’s causing cash application delays? To get answers to these questions, CFOs are looking to their order to cash and AR leaders to optimize their business processes, and stimulate working capital for the organization. I lead procure to pay and also order to cash digital transformations in organizations. And you know these are the critical junctures and when you are dealing with you know, unforeseen operational circumstances and environmental circumstances you have to focus on what you can control. And if you know, if you’re utilizing a software technology, how are you leveraging that to derive the actual value that that was intended to deliver. A recent report that comes out says that 80% of leaders at this time we were there researching or plan to accelerate their digital transformation during 2021. You know, so in the marketplace are seeing a large volume of interest and the acceleration of leveraging technology solutions to help optimize the accounts receivable functions. So, let’s ask a question here. The poll comes up really quick. And we’re going to ask the question, Does implementing a technology solution mark the end of your digital transformation journey? So we’ll give a few minutes to allow you guys, you basically hold up your phone and expand the view to get the QR code.

[ 3:02 ] Jason Herrington:

Okay, so it’s like heavily weighted to know. So let’s give it just another minute or so.

[ 3:15 ] Jason Herrington:

Some folks aren’t sure at this time, or maybe we can clear that up. All right, so a strong representation towards know, you know, I believe that it is more than a digital transformation than just the technology solution. And that was reinforced. If you saw one of the prior speakers of Gen pack. She also mentions that it’s not purely the technology solution that creates the value. It’s the process and the technology solution. So I’ll reiterate that as well. Thank you for participating in that poll. So moving down. This is an interesting statement here. Why do 85% of AR transformation projects fail? I mean, it’s pretty staggering to think of, of all the transformations that are going out in the world 85% of them fail. Well, that that’s, that’s horrible. I wouldn’t want to be a part of an occurrence where I vetted a technology solution introduced it to my organization rolled it out, only to discover that it didn’t work. And you know, what are the two most common mistakes to avoid poor user adoption, meaning that the staff level people that are conducting the financial operations are utilizing the technology solution to conduct daily operations. So you haven’t, convince them to utilize a tool that will, you know, eventually produce the results that you want. They’re likely doing it the same old-fashioned way and getting by with what they can make work. Have another key indicator here and that mistake is you there no benchmarks you’re not you don’t have a clear line of sight. Where are you in an as of state and where do you want to be. And so, you know there’s no direct path of like we are here and we’re trying to get here. And we have to navigate this transformation in order to do that. So you have to set those expectations and understand that it’s a journey but you can reach a goal.

[ 5:27 ] Jason Herrington:

There’s a changing definition of digital transformation and again, I’ll refer to the former speaker, it’s, you know, delivering value beyond just the technology solution. You know, I’ve moved in from my prior employer who’s an existing Highradius client running almost all the entire integrated receipts solution. And I’m in a role now with Highradius where I help existing clients realize the value of their technology solutions. So I guide finance teams through their transformation and ensure that they’re keeping a strong line of sight on their original value proposition and move down the path towards actualizing the value and hence returning, you know, the investment back to the organization. So a better definition of digital transformation is delivering value beyond technology. A critical component to any digital transformation project beyond the implementation of the product solution is change management. And that refers to the impact on the organization that’s invoking this digital transformation. So there’s no denying that digital transformation requires technology solutions, but the success of digital transformation project heavily relies on the execution of change management. So you have to develop a strategy. Even when you’re going through the RFP process, you haven’t even selected a partner yet. You have to align the team’s perceptions meaning that your, your directors, your managers, your supervisors, your staff-level folks, help them on, you know, get on board with the understanding that we’re experiencing challenges in cash app credit collections, we need an answer we’re searching, and we were going to need your help to make this work. And that also speaks to engaging hearts and minds, where you create an inherent vested interest on behalf of the opposite teams that are running the operations, to want the chains to work to want the technology solution, and to adopt the solution in order to utilize it, the benefits of it. And that follows with providing tools and training, in addition to coaching, you know, I’ll underscore the coaching piece of it. It’s so important to be a cheerleader for the initiative, you know, or you’re constantly reinforcing, that this is a good thing for the organization, it’s going to improve efficiencies, and the operation is going to benefit from it, and reinforcing that even if things are getting bumpy during the implementation, and they’re not going exactly as planned, that’s going to happen. But constantly reinforcing the decision to go down this path and allowing the team members to participate and provide the tools and the training that they need. I’ll ask what component of it is you need to build, analyze the results in a production environment. And as you progress, you know, down the path of your digital transformation. If you don’t have again, line of sight to how you’re progressing on leading indicators, you’re never going to understand how to reach or if you’ve reached your lagging indicators such as DSO reductions, reduce cycle times in cash application, you know, periodic reviews on you know, credit, high risk, you know, credit situations. So, I reinforce that, that change management is a key tool to ensuring your digital transformation is accessible. And that is partnering with the technology solution team but also internally, taking ownership of the internal change management, three perspectives for AR digital transformation is you know, consider the perspective of the end-users, you know, your staff-level folks were, you know, what does it mean to them. The customers, the customers what’s in it for them, are they are you a difficult vendor to deal with because of how you’re presenting statement information, invoices, your misapplying their cash or you know, whatever those challenges are, and of course, the business perspective. You know, you have to know to understand like well, what is the business trying to get out of this, are we trying to lower the DSO decrease, you know, bad debts increase cash flow. So all three of those perspectives must be identified in order to have a clear line of sight of what’s ultimately trying to be achieved. And pursuant to that value realization.

[ 10:24 ] Jason Herrington:

You may have seen this demo up in the product demo booth, there’s introducing the dotOne performance and provides, you know, critical insights into the product usage. So as you’re moving into a production state of your technology solution, you must have a line of sight into what levels of activity are occurring within the tools, are the analysts performing meaning the individual staff members, they’re using the tool, but are they actually using it in a way that’s creating benefits to their portfolio or their business function, and also customer performance metrics. You know, these all are contributing factors to the key performance indicators, which lead into the business value metrics. So if you haven’t had a chance to walk through this demo, it’s just up there, it’s a very valuable tool. And I flew in from Dallas this morning, when I was walking by the cockpit, I looked in the instrument panel and just saw a massive, you know, a barrage of gauges and different screens and so forth. And of course, it was overwhelming to me, because I don’t know what any of that means, but the pilot who is trained knows exactly what it means. And he utilizes that information to make course corrections, as long as we’re in the flight path, he couldn’t take off fly or land without all that information being presented to him in that cockpit. You know, it’s closely co-related to what I view the dotOne performance system as is it’s giving you a cockpit of information to understand how you’re tracking in leading indicators and lagging indicators, which helps you make course corrections to ensure that your value realization materializes. This slide identifies several critical factors within the various product modules, you know, credit EIPP, cash app deductions, and collections that should be considered in terms of well, how do we even set what value metrics on the different product modules. This is a nice framework that will help you develop a value realization proposal that says, here’s what ultimately we want out of this technology solution. How do we get there driving continuous improvement for your digital project that, you know, like I said, you win when you’re in implementation, you move into the production phase, you’re effectively in flight, you constantly have to be monitoring, you know how the flight is going and not settle for. Well, we implemented it, we turned it on and this is as good as it’s gonna get, you know, constantly driving improvement. really more of a Kaizen approach to not settling for good enough, delivering transformation projects that are on time and in the budget is a primary objective of the Highradius team. The dotOne dashboard allows you to take quick and corrective actions by monitoring leading KPIs. So as you’re, you know, in-flight, this dotOne performance dashboard, again, give you a cockpit to monitor product usage, analysts usage, you know, customer performance, the leading indicators, and ultimately the lagging indicators, which again is what setting the expectations for your value realization. So dotOne performance empowers teams with three unique benefits real-time monitoring of indicators for proactive correction, again, you’re in flight. You know, if you’re driving down the road and you’re navigating to a destination, you’re constantly checking your gauges. Well, you know, view it in the same context, the dotOne allows you to constantly check your gauges to ensure you’re going down the right path. benchmarking against KPIs in your peer class. You know, if you’re in a CPG or staffing services or any other business class, you’ll have insight into how your peer companies are performing compared to your performance. And that will certainly provide valuable insights on what course corrections may be necessary. visibility into your global AR performance if you’re multinational dealing in multiple regions, multiple currencies, walk through the demo and you’ll see a very impressive display on how the various geographic segregations are displayed.

[ 15:07 ] Jason Herrington:

So ultimately, the technology solution in a company with internal change management defining your value realization and how do you get to that place is heavily relied on internal change management, obviously selecting a high-quality software partner, which we can make some recommendations on that is going to return the value on the investment. And ultimately that’s the goal, and your digital transformation is not a destination. It’s a journey, and you’re going to constantly be critiquing and making refinements, as environmental conditions change marketplace corrections change, I would highly encourage you to walk through the demo of the dotOne performance product, and just conceive how it can help you realize that value. So at this time, I’ll open it up for questions. What increases your chances of the raffle? Right.

[ 16:32 ] Questioner:

So my question is this, and I think it’s a question that a lot of people want to find an answer for that is, we talked about DSOs, we talked about how dotOne is tracking performance. How can we surely track performance, if we don’t know if the invoice got cleared off because it got paid, a credit was issued. And those other issues are underlying all the system right now is looking at is when did the invoice get cleared off the system. Correct, he doesn’t look at how it got cleared off, so is there a way that we could possibly work on identifying how an invoice got cleared off so that we can truly know what the DSO for a customer is.

[ 17:19 ] Jason Herrington:

Oh, yeah, I’m following your question, meaning that, you know, did you sell something and the customer paid for it, that’s what removed it from the AR versus it was credited off and now you’re skewing the DSO calculation. Now, that’s a great question, I do understand that and I know in some cases, there are ways you know, in the data management to segregate offset by credit memo versus cash application. The cash application module is obviously a very specific product module. And that transactional activity could be, you know, isolated to produce the data set that you’re referring to. Thank you for your question. Alright, guys thanks for your time.

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