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New Year’s Guide to Starting Fresh And Flourishing in Finance in 2021

As the new year kicks off, many of us feel a renewed sense of optimism and anticipation for the possibility of what lies ahead as we leave behind a tumultuous 2020 and start fresh in 2021.

In fact, 68 percent of leaders believe their business is in a good position to grow in 2021. We learned this from our new survey of 500 business leaders summarized in a new report titled Expert Insights for Peak Performance in 2021.

While the optimism is encouraging, there are several challenges to face in 2021. Twenty-six percent of leaders are concerned about continuing to operate with a hybrid workforce in the office and at home, while 30 percent say integrating new essential technology solutions will be the primary hurdle.

Starting fresh in 2021 means shifting to digital

So what does that mean for finance professionals like you? The answer is straightforward: Shifting to digital will liberate you and your business to achieve high performance.

Our survey revealed strong momentum in this direction with 60 percent of leaders looking to digitize all internal operations in 2021. Their biggest motivations, cited by nearly half of respondents (44 percent), are to create more efficiency for the finance team, more visibility/control over cashflow and more security.

One compelling reason to digitalize operations is to help reduce payment interruptions – which have been widespread during the pandemic. More than half of respondents (52 percent) are experiencing payment interruptions due to remote working and reliance on courier services.

Read more: 2021 Outlook for the Accounts Payable Software Market

Nearly half of leaders plan to shift to electronic invoicing and payments in the new year to eliminate manual processes that hinder productivity.

Automating your accounts payable processes and payments represents an opportunity to gain more efficiency, visibility and control over your cashflows.

Start fresh and flourish in 2021

2021 is the year to break free from the piles of paperwork burying your team in manual tasks and time-consuming data entry. How? Three steps stand out as extremely important in this process.

1. Don’t overreact to 2020

2020 won’t happen again in 2021. 2020 brought us so many anomalies on so many levels that it would take a long time to unpack it all and have it make sense.

Write last year off as a super unusual year. Learn from 2020 but don’t dwell on it. Don’t over-invest or under-invest based on what you experienced in 2020.

This is a year to start fresh. Embrace your clean slate. You’re beginning anew. It’s a year to exude optimism and look forward with confidence and commitment.

Have an open mind about the benefits paperless process will deliver for your business and be receptive to the idea that it’ll give your more control and more security for your business.

2. Believe that AP software can ignite your career

The truth is that automating your AP processes can accelerate the joy you feel in your daily work. It can open up more fulfilling career opportunities than you may have ever imagine.

Here’s the key: You won’t have less work to do if you automate. Quite the opposite, you’ll have more time to do exciting work such as financial analysis, business advising and internal controls monitoring. You’ll have more time to gain more skills in data analytics and machine learning.

You’ll have more opportunity to train in digital technologies and applications, financial forecasting and team leadership. It’s time to sharpen current skills and develop new ones.

3. Ignite your career with AP software

Business is not all about money, but it’s a big part of it. And if you automate your AP processes, your company will accelerate payments, reduce payment delays and late fees, pursue new customers faster and improve current customer relationships.

All of that translates to higher revenues for your business – and that’s a good thing for you.

Final thoughts

Now’s the time hit “refresh.” It’s a new year. All brand new, all available to you, to do what you want to do.

Except this year, you’ll be able to do it faster, easier and better. And do it more of it. And develop more new skills more often.

If you use accounts payable software.

Now’s the time to drive your career upward, have fun and be more engaged than any other year of your professional life.

Yes, 2021 is the year to start fresh.

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