Performance appraisals. They’re a necessary component of measuring your team’s work in Accounts Payable, both individually and collectively. And while performance appraisal time is often stressful for both managers and their employees, focusing on a few key areas for performance review can help smooth the overall process.
When developing goals and measuring performance for your Accounts Payable team members, it’s important to ensure that their goals and performance are tied to these key elements of a successful Accounts Payable department:
And here’s why.
1. Accuracy — Making payments is the core of Accounts Payable, so the #1 goal of team members should be accuracy in their work. Examples include error-free data entry, accurate payments that align with contract terms, prompt and correct filing procedures, and typo-free emails and other communications.
A key component of accuracy is attention to detail. Throughout the year, be sure to promote guidelines and practices that reinforce attention to detail, such as surprise supervisory audits that reward team members for accuracy. Positive reinforcement goes a long way. For example, if you find that a team member has had error-free data entry for the time period audited, treat him or her to a free lunch.
2. Efficiency — Improving your Accounts Payable team’s efficiency can help you reach other goals. And saving time equals saving money. Consider building in goals and rewarding team members who suggest ways to reduce manual tasks and automate processes. Of course, creating goals for efficiency depends on your current system and procedures, but some goals might include adapting advancing technology within a specified time frame, such as optical character recognition technology for invoice entry or converting more check-based payments to e-payments. Consider the time-consuming tasks that might be automated or eliminated to help your department succeed and reduce costs.
3. Adaptability — Ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus is credited with saying, “Change is the only constant in life.” Yet nearly every person, both then and now, struggles with accommodating change. In the business world, change comes often, and adaptability is key to success. An adaptable person can remain calm and composed under stressful situations. Plus, an adaptable person is more likely to accomplish tasks and meet deadlines when they’re not fazed by change.
Where your team’s AP performance is concerned, you can measure adaptability by how readily they adjust to changes in department policies and procedures. Also consider how receptive or resistant they are to new ideas for improving processes or efficiencies. And be mindful of how your team members appreciate and criticize the opinions of others on the team.
To receive weekly tips and information on corporate payments news and insights, be sure to subscribe to our blog.