P-Card Success Story

Part 3 of 3

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This is the P-Card success story shared by Tiffany Lovelace, CPCP, in the fourth quarter of 2014 when she was still with Kansas City Southern. Her advice is timeless and could be just what you need to take your program to the next level.  For more background, see part 1 of 3. 

Adopting Effective Strategies

We have a saying in our department, “If it makes sense, do it.” Our organization was willing to rethink how we utilize Commercial Card products and services. We created program goals and objectives to be in sync with accounts payable, strategic sourcing, and treasury, as all three business functions are critical elements, contributing to the overall program success.

Marketing the Program

Realizing we had to combat negative stereotypes and lack of education pertaining to card products, my expertise in marketing provided the opportunity for our team and super users to become an extension of our issuer’s account management team.

We launched surveys, formed focus groups, and created process maps to unveil issues plaguing our program. With this new-found knowledge, we birthed a new program and crafted targeted messages for our marketing campaign to promote solutions across our organization.

(See also the blog post on re-igniting a spark within your card program.)

We launched surveys, formed focus groups, and created process maps to unveil issues plaguing our program.
— Tiffany Lovelace

What You Can Do

When you find yourself charged with the task of managing your organization’s card program, the most essential step from my viewpoint is to examine your internal culture and the hidden pain points that pertain to the purchase-to-pay (P2P) and strategic sourcing process, and the ever-dreaded compliance arena! You gain knowledge that allows your program to become the ideal, low-cost solution.

Our program manager, Alicia Thiessen, who possesses more than four years of Commercial Card experience, encourages program managers to take the time to thoroughly review and understand the current policies guiding the direction of the program. In addition, she suggests eliminating any preconceived notions you may have that pertain to program management and performing a comprehensive analysis of card history. In essence, tailor your program to meet your organization’s unique culture.

More Tips

  • Look for ways to expand the solution set your program offers.
  • Learn what’s most important to your organization. For example, if your organization is plagued with costly processes, perform process map exercises to uncover how your program can reduce P2P process costs, improve efficiencies and enhance the overall performance level of your employees.
  • Identify low-hanging fruit (the quick wins) to enable you to create compelling stories showcasing your program’s success.

Upon review of our previous policy, we realized the financial impact and efficiencies to be gained by increasing our single transaction limit from $5,000 to $10,000. This no-cost and low-effort task migrated 81 monthly transactions from the purchase order platform, delivering a $500,000 increase in card volume!

Maintain a vision of the compelling stories that will unfold as a result of unleashing new strategies to transform your program into the desired payment vehicle of choice.

Learn more about P-Card program management from Recharged Education.