Few executives think much about transaction criticality. Transactions certainly aren’t strategic; however, I have seen numerous clients’ growth and profit plans negatively affected by the lack of transaction rigor. Thus it should be on your list of fundamentals for review.
There are only two issues that occur with transactions: 1) Accuracy. 2) Timing. It would seem simple; however, it is not an uncommon struggle. The reason is that although limited in terms of types of issues, transactions are widespread. Typically there are transactions affecting almost all functions of an organization. Typical ones include the following: purchase orders, receipts, production orders (work orders), production entry, inventory movements, shipments, transfers, inventory adjustments, invoices, etc.
I’ve found the secret to success with transactions starts with communicating the value of transactions. Once an employee understands that the accuracy and timing of the transactions he/she performs can affect customer satisfaction, efficiency and even margins, he is more focused. The other common cause of transaction issues is that the people performing the transactions don’t fully understand the process/steps in performing the transaction. I rarely find people who know how to back out mistakes correctly. Checking your transactions can be invaluable. Typos and mistakes are caught early on. These are easy fixes; however, they require focus and attention by leaders.
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