The Secrets of Change: Addressing Generational Turnover in SPA Management

Mo Barsema
Industry Principle
Updated:
June 10, 2024

The world is changing at an unprecedented pace, and the way we do business is changing right along with it. The challenges of generational turnover and specialized knowledge retention are bigger than ever before, especially in the realm of rebate and SPA management.  

So, what do we do about it?

Understanding the Generational Shift in the Workplace

As time marches on, many companies face a pressing issue: key person dependency. This means that only one person holds critical, operational knowledge. For many businesses, these key employees are also nearing retirement. This is very common when it comes to rebates.

In fact, we know of many companies that are concerned about employees departing. For these companies, their departing employee may be the only one who understands their entire rebate ecosystem. If you’re dealing with this concern, know you’re not alone. This is a widespread issue around the globe.  

Why?  Major demographic shifts are occurring across and within companies. For instance, a significant portion of an older company’s workforce may be Baby Boomers. As these employees retire, there's a gap in knowledge that needs to be filled by Gen Xers and Millennials. Understanding the demographics of your company is crucial for planning ahead and implementing strategic transitions in workforce knowledge and skills.

The Challenge of Knowledge Transfer

One of the biggest hurdles businesses must overcome is making sure that the incoming generation is prepared to take over complex tasks such as special pricing agreement (SPA) management. To prepare for this challenge, companies may consider revamping their training and education to address the unique needs of SPA management. Companies may need to rely on a more integrated training approach that includes practical, hands-on learning experiences to guarantee that the incoming workforce is well-prepared to take over the reins without a hitch.

During this critical transition, the importance of collaboration and education across departments – responsibilities that many companies have traditionally not prioritized – cannot be understated. Sales, marketing and finance departments often operate in silos, which complicates the process of implementing a cohesive strategy.  

The Weight of Waiting

The next generations, particularly Millennials and Gen Z, demand efficiency and speed, simplified processes, and immediate results. This expectation requires companies to rethink and streamline their operations to adapt to this rapid-fire mindset. Automating time-consuming processes such as SPA requests and claims could significantly reduce the waiting time and manual effort involved in these critical transactions.

The current state of SPA management can be described as "the weight of the wait." So much of SPA management requires an excessive amount of time and resources going into maintaining current systems. Each SPA involves numerous steps – from approval to claims reconciliation – and each step is fraught with its own potential delays and disputes. This inefficiency costs time and money, weighing down a company's bottom line and ability to operate effectively.

Looking Towards a More Connected Future

There’s a better future, though. A future where processes are more streamlined and interconnected. This will reduce the need for manual intervention and speed up the entire process. This vision aligns with the expectations of the younger workforce, who tend to prioritize strategic thinking over mundane task management.  

Technology can help bridge the gap between the retiring generation and newcomers, ensuring that knowledge is preserved and transferred efficiently while also introducing new, more efficient methods of working. Investing in advanced rebate management platforms like Enable can aid in this essential transformation, centralizing and simplifying many of the complex responsibilities of rebate and SPA management.  

Embracing the Change

Navigating the complex challenges of generational change, knowledge retention, and technological transformation in rebate management are, well, complex. As companies plan for the future, understanding their demographic makeup, embracing cross-departmental collaboration and investing in technology will be key to transitioning knowledge effectively and ensuring operational continuity. The goal isn't just to replace outgoing expertise but to enhance and streamline processes to meet the demands of a changing workforce and business environment.

Learn more about opportunities for improvement and innovative solutions for SPA management in our report.

Category:

The Secrets of Change: Addressing Generational Turnover in SPA Management

Mo Barsema
Industry Principle
Updated:
June 10, 2024

The world is changing at an unprecedented pace, and the way we do business is changing right along with it. The challenges of generational turnover and specialized knowledge retention are bigger than ever before, especially in the realm of rebate and SPA management.  

So, what do we do about it?

Understanding the Generational Shift in the Workplace

As time marches on, many companies face a pressing issue: key person dependency. This means that only one person holds critical, operational knowledge. For many businesses, these key employees are also nearing retirement. This is very common when it comes to rebates.

In fact, we know of many companies that are concerned about employees departing. For these companies, their departing employee may be the only one who understands their entire rebate ecosystem. If you’re dealing with this concern, know you’re not alone. This is a widespread issue around the globe.  

Why?  Major demographic shifts are occurring across and within companies. For instance, a significant portion of an older company’s workforce may be Baby Boomers. As these employees retire, there's a gap in knowledge that needs to be filled by Gen Xers and Millennials. Understanding the demographics of your company is crucial for planning ahead and implementing strategic transitions in workforce knowledge and skills.

The Challenge of Knowledge Transfer

One of the biggest hurdles businesses must overcome is making sure that the incoming generation is prepared to take over complex tasks such as special pricing agreement (SPA) management. To prepare for this challenge, companies may consider revamping their training and education to address the unique needs of SPA management. Companies may need to rely on a more integrated training approach that includes practical, hands-on learning experiences to guarantee that the incoming workforce is well-prepared to take over the reins without a hitch.

During this critical transition, the importance of collaboration and education across departments – responsibilities that many companies have traditionally not prioritized – cannot be understated. Sales, marketing and finance departments often operate in silos, which complicates the process of implementing a cohesive strategy.  

The Weight of Waiting

The next generations, particularly Millennials and Gen Z, demand efficiency and speed, simplified processes, and immediate results. This expectation requires companies to rethink and streamline their operations to adapt to this rapid-fire mindset. Automating time-consuming processes such as SPA requests and claims could significantly reduce the waiting time and manual effort involved in these critical transactions.

The current state of SPA management can be described as "the weight of the wait." So much of SPA management requires an excessive amount of time and resources going into maintaining current systems. Each SPA involves numerous steps – from approval to claims reconciliation – and each step is fraught with its own potential delays and disputes. This inefficiency costs time and money, weighing down a company's bottom line and ability to operate effectively.

Looking Towards a More Connected Future

There’s a better future, though. A future where processes are more streamlined and interconnected. This will reduce the need for manual intervention and speed up the entire process. This vision aligns with the expectations of the younger workforce, who tend to prioritize strategic thinking over mundane task management.  

Technology can help bridge the gap between the retiring generation and newcomers, ensuring that knowledge is preserved and transferred efficiently while also introducing new, more efficient methods of working. Investing in advanced rebate management platforms like Enable can aid in this essential transformation, centralizing and simplifying many of the complex responsibilities of rebate and SPA management.  

Embracing the Change

Navigating the complex challenges of generational change, knowledge retention, and technological transformation in rebate management are, well, complex. As companies plan for the future, understanding their demographic makeup, embracing cross-departmental collaboration and investing in technology will be key to transitioning knowledge effectively and ensuring operational continuity. The goal isn't just to replace outgoing expertise but to enhance and streamline processes to meet the demands of a changing workforce and business environment.

Learn more about opportunities for improvement and innovative solutions for SPA management in our report.

Category: