Talking with Global 2000 CFOs and other business/technology leaders about transforming the finance organization, here are the typical finance transformation outcomes enterprises are striving towards. There is nothing highfalutin there, but the simple finance transformation outcomes sought by finance leaders is a testament to the current state of affairs where even a basic process is complex, cumbersome, costly, and at times inaccurate.  So, while the current state-of-the-art may be possible, the aspirations are much more grounded in reality.

“Forget the wishful thinking of a daily close. If we can do our financial close and report within a month, we’d be happy. Right now it takes an army of augmented staff and herculean efforts to complete this nightmare,” said a flustered CFO of a giant corporation with grew out of unwieldy acquisitions over the years. 

Typical Finance Transformation Outcomes:

  1. Efficiency and accuracy in basic transaction processing and reduce errors and improve accuracy.
  2. Reduce and eliminate the proliferation of Access databases and Spreadsheets for various functions.
  3. Decrease the time it takes to do budgeting. Annual budgeting should not take almost an entire year.
  4. Improve the experience of the stakeholders relying on finance for various tasks, activities, data, dashboards, and reports.
  5. Reduce the effort it takes to comply with government and other regulations.
  6. Enhance the forecast accuracy and also the ability to frequently update forecasts based on changes in business dynamics
  7. Accelerate financial close and reporting.
  8. Change the perception of users and stakeholders as recorders of past events to a business support function.
  9. Improve visibility and pace of accounts payable process.
  10. Eliminate the practice of using email as a workflow system for important financial transactions.

These are the finance transformation outcomes that are typical to a Global 2000 CFO.  Are you considering a finance transformation of your own? And if so, what are the outcomes you desire and how are you planning on achieving them? Please check out Finance Transformation Framework.

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