But even with data suggesting that collaboration makes companies stronger, many CFOs and other finance professionals remain on the fence when it comes to financial collaboration.
And for finance professionals that are ready to commit to greater connection and collaboration, they continue to face numerous obstacles.
Resistance to Change
How many times have you heard the phrase “but we’ve always done it this way” uttered in your company? Probably more times than you can count.
Resistance to doing things differently is common, particularly if that fear is grounded in a lack of knowledge. Employee pushback needs to be expected and planned for.
For example, an AP staff member fearing automation may relate to the fear that they’ll be unable to properly utilize new tools, to a basic distrust of changing a process that works, albeit slowly, to a more streamlined process.
They may also fear they will be replaced by the technology that is being introduced.
Addressing these fears upfront can help reduce the anxiety that often accompanies change and provide your staff with the reassurance that any new changes will not impact the availability of their job, nor their ability to do it.
Communication and a good change management plan are key to working past resistance.
Reluctance to Rely on Others
Working in silos provides team members with a level of comfort. They understand the chain of command, they’re comfortable asking their co-workers questions, and they are confident in their ability to complete their assigned tasks.
But when collaboration with those outside their silo is introduced, employees may make assumptions that can effectively create logjams for effective collaboration.
Those fears can include:
It’s highly likely that your employees have established a comfort zone and are reluctant to step outside of it.
Showing them the benefits they can experience (less repetitious tasks, more professional opportunities, automated approval workflows, reduced stress levels) and providing them with the level of comfort needed to make the transition.
Poor Communication Across Departments
Communication between departments is a necessity for any business, large or small, and one of the areas that continues to suffer.
Zealously guarding information from ‘outsiders’ does nothing for the department guarding the information, while also keeping other departments in the dark.
While sharing information may be uncomfortable for some who prefer to continue to work in their particular silos, true collaboration is a necessity.