Online document exchange: how to encourage counterparties to use ODE

Companies already using ODE services in their work often have a need to involve their partners in the exchange of documents in electronic form. There are common situations where some counterparties are already using an electronic document exchange system, while others still have to exchange paper documents. This adds a lot of complexity to the work: you have to keep track of which documents to send, control the status of their approval and signing, and spend a lot of time printing and sending documents.

Here we explain how to convince your partners to switch to document exchange in the Vchasno.ODE service.

Here’s how to start exchanging documents with counterparties

Step 1: Make sure which of your partners have already switched to ODE

You should check which of your partners are already using Vchasno.EDO and which are still working with paper documents. This can be done in several ways:

  1. Check the counterparty by EDRPOU or TIN on the main page of the Vchasno website.
  2. Upload a list of counterparties on the main page of the website.
  3. Check the counterparty by EDRPOU or TIN in the Vchasno service account.

Step 2: Inform your counterparties

To ensure that your partners are not surprised that you are switching to electronic document workflow, it is better to warn them. You can inform your counterparties in several ways:

  1. Send an official letter. Warn your partners who are not in the service that the company wants to shift to an electronic exchange of documents with them. Tell them how to register in Vchasno and start exchanging electronic documents. If there are a lot of them, make an email newsletter. As Vchasno’s experience shows, this method works best.
    Download a sample letter about switching to electronic document workflow. Copy the text, paste it into your letter and fill in the blanks.
  2. Make phone calls to counterparties and encourage them to exchange documents using the Vchasno service. Tell the counterparty about the advantages of the service and describe a positive experience of exchanging electronic documents. Answer the counterparty’s questions about the Vchasno service and give advice on how to get started (more on this in p. 4).
  3. Tell about successful cases of ODE implementation on the company’s website, on official pages in social networks, in email newsletters, etc.
  4. Organize an internal webinar for counterparties. If the project is large, it is worth talking to partners and explaining the personal advantages of electronic document workflow for each of them.If there are a lot of such partners – involve Vchasno managers. We have successful experience in conducting webinars for partners and will be happy to help you.
  5. Teach counterparties to work in the service. As practice shows, inability to use ODE services is the main argument of employees against switching to electronic document exchange.
    The Vchasno features are very simple and similar to any email service. That is why clients, as a rule, master it very quickly. The Vchasno team has prepared instructions on how to customize the work of employees. Use it to introduce Vchasno functionality to your partners.

We also recommend you to pay attention to the materials on how to use Vchasno features:

Learn about additional features of Vchasno

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Step 3: Prepare documents and negotiate legal issues

If your partner is ready to switch to electronic document workflow, it is important to coordinate legal issues with them.

An additional agreement on the exchange of electronic documents should be concluded with the company. A template of the agreement can be downloaded here.

If the company plans to switch to ODE in its internal document workflow as well, it should publicize an internal order establishing electronic document workflow. The order template can be downloaded here.

To use the Vchasno service in the exchange of source accounting documents, it is important to specify the requirements for source documents in the company’s accounting policy.

An important stage when working with ODE services is the signing of electronic documents. It will be useful for counterparties to know who in the company needs a qualified electronic signature (QES, how to get it and use it. The Vchasno.KEP service has prepared detailed help on these issues.

Step 4: Send an invitation from the service

Vchasno features allow you to invite a counterparty to the service. There is a person icon above the list of documents in the service. Click on it and select “Invite Counterparty” in the pop-up menu. Specify the company’s EDRPOU and its email. It will receive a letter with an invitation to exchange documents in Vchasno.

Step 5: Send the first document

After the counterparty accepts the invitation to exchange documents in Vchasno, send them the first document. To learn how to do this, see the step-by-step instructions.

How to convince a partner: successful cases of ODE implementation

Based on their own needs, companies may exchange electronic documents only in certain areas of work. Additional arguments may be required to convince employees of certain departments of counterparties to switch to ODE.

Vchasno partners shared their experience of how they convinced employees of different departments of their contracting companies to switch to ODE.

ODE for the accountant. Red Bull’s experience

The Red Bull company has engaged 75% of counterparties in electronic document exchange. In particular, the vast majority of accounting documents were converted to electronic format.

The company notes that the main objection of counterparties to the transition to ODE is the lack of skills of accountants to use ODE services. To solve this problem, it is necessary to train employees.

Vchasno has prepared a series of tutorial videos that will help you master the basic functions of the service. Use them to convince your counterparties of the simplicity and convenience of the service.

In their work, accountants are constantly faced with a large number of ongoing tasks related to printing and sending paper documents. Switching to ODE can save up to 2 hours of working time every day.

In addition, the reasoning that electronic document workflow helps to speed up business processes and get profits faster is important for accountants.

“We negotiate with our counterparties that business processes will go faster after switching to ODE. We will sign the contract, receive invoices, sign statements of work performed and pay for services faster"

— Olga Moskalenko, chief accountant of Red Bull

ODE for financial departments. Metinvest-SMC’s experience

The Metinvest-SMC company exchanges electronic documents with 50% of counterparties. Transition to ODE in the company was gradual. Increase in the share of electronic documents in the company, in particular financial documents, was conditioned by the needs of time.

“Often counterparties refuse to switch to ODE because they are technically unprepared. Sometimes there is also internal resistance in companies due to employees' stereotypes. But this is an inevitable process - sooner or later companies will switch to ODE”.

— Andrii Shevtsov, CFO of Metinvest-SMC

With the war’s outbreak, the advantages of ODE for the exchange of financial documents became evident. All companies strengthened control over their working capital, introduced or strengthened current analysis of revenues and expenditures, debts, balances, etc.

ODE services integrated with the companies’ accounting systems help finance department employees to perform current analytics. An important reason for the financial department of a company to switch to ODE may be assistance in solving technical issues (customization of the service, integration with accounting systems, etc.).

Vchasno service offers wide possibilities of integration with various accounting systems. You can get a detailed information about integration or order a consultation with a specialist by clicking here

Read the case study of Metinvest-SMC’s transition to Vchasno.ODE service.

ODE for lawyers. The Aurora’s experience

The chain of Aurora multimarkets has engaged 70% of suppliers and 30% of lessors to exchange documents in the Vchasno service. Contracts, additional agreements and other legally significant documents were transferred to the electronic format.

“In our company we apply the principles of Japanese Kaizen philosophy: we adopt the best ideas from our partners that can improve our work. In turn, we approach other managers with a proposal to switch to ODE.
Among our counterparties we can formally distinguish two groups - suppliers and lessors. The former are more likely to agree to switch to ODE: they realize that it helps them get profits faster. However, among the lessors there are both large companies and individuals who are sometimes skeptical of electronic documents”.

— Anna Kanina, Director of the Legal Department of Aurora Multimarkets

In corporate practice, lawyers often accompany executives or managers in the process of concluding contracts. When working with counterparties, they often work with standard documents. Most of the time is spent on agreeing amendments. As evidenced by the experience of the legal department of the Aurora network, employees saved more than 1,000 working hours during the year due to the transition to ODE.

Legal departments of companies are also involved in communication with state control and law enforcement agencies in case disputable issues arise. Therefore, it is important for companies deciding to switch to ODE to be sure of the legal force of electronic documents. Vchasno has prepared a guide to the main legal issues of electronic document workflow.

Read the case study of the Aurora multimarket chain’s transition to the Vchasno.ODE service.