By Elizabeth Milne, SAP
Financial leaders and their teams face tremendous pressure to deliver critical financial and operational information at all times, especially in times of uncertainty and turmoil.
This was a significant finding in the most recent Aberdeen Report on the current challenges facing finance leaders.
As a financial leader, it’s easy to see that you are busy managing the financial operations day to day. However, the business expects and even needs you to be able to analyze the data in their inbox and forecast the company’s future. Your business requires you to decide what investments are best and which ones to avoid. The plans that lead to growth of businesses must be made by you.
This is the most important: you need to address this strategic, organizational role along with all the complex analysis, business modeling and forecasting using the same financial systems that you have been using for years .
Future-proofing your business is essential. This means using tools that are deeply rooted in the past. Despite this being a cold comfort, you are not the only one.
This problem gets worse when you consider the fundamental challenges associated with accessing and trusting data. These challenges are directly tied to your ability to do your job. Aberdeen actually asked finance leaders to name the top two obstacles to completing their jobs.
1 There is simply too much manual work between these processes and the information they require.
2 They aren’t sure if the data they have is accurate.
Your business requires real-time information, so everyone must be confident about what you provide.
The good news is that there’s some good news.
The Aberdeen Report also provides some light at the end, showing what the best-in class companies have in common as well as what they’ve done in order to address the problem.
Cloud-based ERP is used by the top 20% of performers to provide accurate, fast, secure, and automated data. They are moving to the cloud in order to eliminate manual processes that can slow down their decisions and hinder growth.
How does that sound? Well…
- Imagine being able to access data from any part of the company and use it to build your budgeting system.
- Imagine if you could automate data imports so that you always have the right information when you need it.
- Imagine being able to compile data in multiple languages and create reports effortlessly.
- What about real-time updates on your financial metrics?
- Imagine what it would be like to have accurate, up-to-date information to base your forecasts?
It would be like having higher productivity and greater profits. This report shows that best in class businesses saw a 19.6% increase in productivity over the past two years, compared to a drop of -.8% for all others. Profitability increased by nearly 16% among the best and dropped -2.6% for everyone else.
It would be great if there was a system that works like this: ERP in cloud. This provides instant financial data to drive business decisions and increase top-line growth. You also have digital tools to continually improve your finance processes.