Content thumbnail Is the Future of Finance New Technology or New People?

26 | Akl`]^mlmj]g^ÕfYf[]f]ol][`fgdg_qgjf]oh]ghd]7Hj]hYjaf_^gjl`]^mlmj]ÕfYf[]^mf[lagf L`];>G2l`]hjY_eYla[nakagfYjq The synthesis of technology and people will be critical for the that enable disparate teams to share information and make future finance function. Tomorrow’s finance function will only connected, data-driven decisions. And the function must succeed if it has people who can lead the technology debate introduce state-of-the-art automation to take care of the and who are willing to innovate in finance’s risk-averse culture. transactional components of finance. Equally, the function’s team members will only be able to focus CFOs should be continually identifying and assessing on higher-value tasks, such as analytics and forecasting, if the new technologies, modeling the potential return on technology is in place both to take care of transactional investment and making the investments required. processes and to provide the data needed for the generation When new technology investments are made, of strategic insight. effective change management will be crucial to To build tomorrow’s digitally enabled and talent-rich finance their successful implementation. function, we suggest three priorities for CFOs: 3. Afn]klafh]ghd] 1. Define a vision Widespread changes to the operating model of the finance A clear vision for the future finance function, which is function, including the use of shared services and aligned with the organization’s overall purpose and business outsourcing, are disrupting the traditional route to the top. strategy, gives finance team members around the world a CFOs need to find the new skills and capabilities required to common ambition, and provides focus for efforts and exploit new technologies and increasing volumes of data. investment decisions. In the digital age, CFOs’ vision for the They also need to build their people’s softer skills, such as future finance function needs to include how smart their communication and influencing skills. A coordinated technology and smart people should work together to approach will be one of the cornerstones to an effective create value. finance function in the future. 2. Rethink technology A bold technology strategy for the finance function will be critical. The function will need to build systems and tools

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