The Importance of Choosing the Right Partner for Your Financial Management System

When it comes to selecting a new financial management system, many organisations face a critical decision: should they work directly with the software supplier or choose a specialised partner for the implementation?

When it comes to selecting a new financial management system, many organisations face a critical decision: should they work directly with the software supplier or choose a specialised partner for the implementation? For many organisations, it can be tempting to work directly with the software supplier, but doing so might mean you don't get the right partner for your specific needs which is crucial for a successful implementation. In fact, the choice of who will implement and support your new system is arguably equally as important as choosing the software itself. At ION, we advocate for a careful and informed approach to selecting your implementation partner. Let’s delve into the main reasons behind this thinking.  

 

The Risks of Accepting a Supplier-Assigned Partner

Often when you work directly with a supplier, they will assign you an implementation partner to handle the delivery and configuration of your new finance system. This can be risky as this partner might not be the best fit for your organisation. They may lack any specific experience or expertise in your sector, leading to a less customised and effective solution. The assigned partner might also not be able to provide the level of support your organisation needs during training and go-live, which can leave your team feeling stressed and frustrated. Your implementation partner and the configuration of your new software are crucial to the success of your project. Therefore, researching and selecting the most appropriate and experienced partner is just as important as researching the software itself.

Industry-Specific Expertise

When you select a partner independently, you have the advantage of choosing one with industry-specific experience. For instance, if you're an education provider, you need a team that understands the intricacies of educational financial management. Equally, a commercial business would require an implementation partner with in-depth knowledge of commercial processes and workflows. Choosing a specialised partner brings a depth of knowledge that a generalist supplier might not offer. Direct suppliers serve a broad array of industries, often adopting a one-size-fits-all approach. A partner with a focused expertise ensures your system is tailored to meet the unique requirements of your sector.

 

Superior Support and Training

Support and training are vital to the successful adoption of a new financial management system. By selecting a partner yourself, you ensure that you receive support tailored to your specific needs. ION, for example, offers specialised training and ongoing assistance carefully designed for your industry. Direct suppliers often offer more generalised support, which may not address the unique challenges faced by your organisation. The right partner provides not only immediate support aligned to your individual goals, but also equips your team with the knowledge to maximise the system’s potential.

 

Streamlined Implementation Process

Choosing your own partner means a more streamlined and efficient implementation process. Direct suppliers typically hand you over to an implementation partner, which can lead to miscommunication and inefficiencies. With ION, you have one dedicated point of contact from start to finish. This continuity ensures clear communication, minimises delays, and accelerates the implementation timeline. By selecting your own partner, you avoid the pitfalls of a fragmented process and enjoy a smoother transition to your new system.

 

Better Value for Money

An independently chosen partner often provides better value for money. Experienced partners like ION have honed their processes to be both efficient and cost-effective. The time and resources saved during implementation can translate into significant cost savings for your organisation.  

Alongside efficiency, industry-specific partners have a wealth of cost-saving knowledge that can be passed on to their clients during the configuration process and post go-live. By being fully immersed within your organisation’s sector, partners will be up to date on the latest industry developments, understand the sector eco-system well, and have expert knowledge in how other software should be integrated with your financial system. For example, your partner would be able to advise you about possible add-ons or modules that would benefit you, instead of investing more money into a separate piece of software. This means you receive a high-quality implementation at a competitive price, maximising your return on investment.

 

Conclusion

Choosing the right financial management system is critical, but selecting the right partner for implementation and support is equally as important. By doing your own research and carefully choosing the best partner for your specific needs, you ensure that your organisation benefits from: industry-specific expertise, superior support, a streamlined implementation process, and better value for money. Don’t leave this crucial decision to chance — take control of your project's success by selecting the best partner for your needs.

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