The IOFM Podcast is the leading on-the-go resource for the latest news, skill-sharpeners and strategies in the world of Accounts Payable and Procure-to-Pay. Tune in for interviews and insights from top AP professionals and thought leaders as they dig in to what’s new in automation, tax and regulatory compliance, and industry benchmarks, plus hear case studies and listen in on Q&A with experts helping your peers in AP solve their toughest challenges.
This podcast is presented by IOFM, the leading provider of training, education and certification programs specifically for Accounts Payable, Procure-to-Pay, Global and Shared Services professionals as well as Controllers and their F&A teams. Learn more at www.iofm.com
Is a Fraudster Romancing You? How to Know and What to Do About It!
It’s February, and romance is in the air! However, what you don’t want is for a scammer to woo you into doing something you shouldn’t. Unfortunately, fraudsters are always upping their game and developing new techniques to rip off unsuspecting AP professionals. Some of their latest gambits involve getting close to you on a personal level in order to get you to let your guard down.
In this fascinating podcast with Debra R. Richardson, vendor master file expert and certified fraud examiner, and Royce Grayson Morse, IOFM’s managing editor, we explore sneaky new ways those looking to steal from your company attempt to lure you in. One of those techniques involves a form of social engineering called malicious elicitation. Here, the scammer gets information from you in what appears to be a completely innocent manner — but is instead a well-crafted ploy to get you to reveal company information that should be kept confidential.
Listen to the podcast to find out how one major company almost fell victim — and learn how to spot these scams.
Find out more about the latest “romance” scams:
Debra Richardson’s Romance Scam Resources (Debra’s website, Putting the AP in hAPpy) Online Romance Scams Toolkit Elicitation — A Conversation With Intent The hottest new dating site: LinkedIn (Business Insider) Love Is in the Air And It’s Full of Scammed Money (Kubikle series, YouTube video) A Lesson Learned From a 2020 Tesla Insider Threat (Debra R. Richardson podcast) Russian National Pleads Guilty After Trying to Hack a Human at Tesla (SecureWorld)
Leadership vs. Management: How They Both Contribute to Workplace Success
While the terms leadership and management are sometimes used interchangeably, there are important differences. IOFM recently spoke with Tracy Zurcher, District Manager at FedEx Ground, to get her thoughts on how to advance both within your organization.
She notes that while management tends to focus on process handling, leadership involves relationship building. Each practice requires different skills, but mastering both is the key to success. Focusing exclusively on management skills won’t inspire optimal results — staff members may lack engagement and their performance may suffer as a result. And because people are the heart of an organization, understanding their needs and working to help them improve will ultimately result in greater employee motivation — which will also impact process improvement.
Zurcher discusses useful tools and techniques she’s discovered during her years in management, offering a fun exercise to help others define their leadership styles. She also notes the useful philosophy put forth by the legendary Mr. Rogers and how that may be applied within the workplace.
Listen to this fascinating podcast to find out more.
How COVID Changed AP Forever, and Where We’re Headed Now
When COVID hit, many Accounts Payable teams were unprepared, particularly if they relied on paper invoices and checks. Lynn Tate, APM, Accounts Payable & Expense Report Analyst for Urban Science Applications Inc., found herself in a situation that required a significant degree of creativity: In order to get her invoices approved and paid in a timely fashion, she needed to quickly find a way to manage them remotely.
What she settled on was a cloud-based file sharing service that enabled her to notify her teammates when there were invoices that needed review. She was able to alert them automatically, obtain the approvals and get the payments queued up for processing with minimal delay.
In this podcast, we’ll not only discuss how she made this decision and got things set up — we’ll explore the lessons she learned along the way and how the challenges of the pandemic actually ended up benefitting her process long-term.
Paving the Way to Automation
“Upper management knows what you do … but they really don’t know what you do.” So says Patrick Kurtz, Client AP Manager for HomeRiver Group. He explains that although executives understand in principle what accounts payable involves, it’s likely that they don’t comprehend the day-to-day challenges of AP. While collecting metrics to present to the C-suite when making a case for automation is a helpful strategy, you must also be able to explain in concrete terms how that will play into process improvement.
Fear of change is also an important factor. Kurtz discusses how to analytically evaluate automation options to make sure you’re recommending the best solution for your situation. The AP team may also be leery, worried about how it will impact their jobs — or that they may even be unemployed after implementation.
Listen in on this fascinating discussion between Kurtz and Grace Closta, IOFM’s Content Manager, to discover how to approach automation in a way that makes sense for the organization while gaining buy-in from the key stakeholders, all the way up and down the chain.
Do You Have Foreign Vendors Hiding in Your VMF?
Most organizations have non-U.S. vendors lurking in their vendor master files, but may not even realize it. Worse yet, some of those vendors may appear on the watchlists published by the U.S. government. Because doing business with these entities without proper due diligence regarding withholding — or even doing business with them at all — can result in steep fines and penalties, it’s important to identify those vendors in order to maintain compliance. But where to begin?
Vendor master file expert consultant Debra R. Richardson discusses this issue with IOFM’s Managing Editor Royce Grayson Morse, reviewing techniques that will help you identify foreign vendors you may not know you have. Once you find them, Richardson explains how to set them up properly and make sure you’re managing them correctly going forward. That includes collecting the right tax form and checking them against the government blocked and prohibited lists, plus recovering VAT and GST taxes if you paid them.
Listen in on the podcast “Identifying Foreign Vendors in Your VMF — and What to Do When You Find Them,” to discover best practices for managing these vendors in order to maintain compliance and avoid significant financial implications.
How Educational Institutions Can Leverage Automation for Improved P2P Workflows
In his work as an educational consultant at Unimarket, Christopher Rust helps clients improve their P2P processes to realize cost savings while freeing up staff to make a greater contribution to the institution.
He recommends taking a thorough look at the impact of change management, both to the department and the institution overall. Moving contract management, procurement and AP into an electronic P2P environment relieves a lot of stress on the team and the typically heavy volume of transactions they must manage. The end goal is improved control of spend management, and for institutions that are research-based, improved compliance.
Rust provides suggestions about how to get started, including who to include on the project team and which functions to automate first, with the end goal being a free flowing, continuous improvement workflow in place of existing, disjointed manual processes. Tune in to this podcast to find out more about his strategy for tuning up P2P workflows.