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

15 L][`fgdg_a[YdZj]Ycl`jgm_`kYj]\akjmhlaf_Zgl`Zmkaf]kkkljYl]_qYf\l`]oYqkl`YlÕfYf[] l]YekogjcYf\[gddYZgjYl]&9k;>GkZmad\lgegjjgoÌkÕfYf[]^mf[lagf$l`]qoaddf]]\lgÕf\ h]ghd]oal`l`]kcaddkÈYf\eglanYlagfÈlg[gehd]e]fll`]l][`fgdg_a[YdaffgnYlagfk$Yko]dd Yklg]eZjY[]jYha\[`Yf_]$\a^^]j]fljgd]kYf\f]oYhhjgY[`]k&9kl`]lggdkg^lgegjjgo Z]_aflgYjjan]Yf\hdYqYjgd]$l`]f]]\Yf\aehgjlYf[]g^ÕfYf[]h]ghd]oaddfglYZYl]$Zml l`]kcaddkl`]qj]imaj]oadd]ngdn]& Traditional approaches to finding and developing talent are The next evolution for the finance function will be to become under pressure as a result of major demographic and a data-driven decision center. Finance professionals will be technological shifts: even less focused on generating reports and information, • 9lYd]flk`gjlY_]`Yk`alafl`]\]n]dgh]\ogjd\& and far more focused on using the available data to drive Organizations face extremely tough competition for the decision-making. best data analytics and digital talent. The finance function’s operating model must evolve to support • Eadd]ffaYdkoaddZ][ge]af[j]Ykaf_dqaf^dm]flaYd& this shift. The future operating model will need to be: The millennial generation is a digital generation, and they • Smarter collaborate in different ways to their older colleagues. All transactional finance processes will be fully automated in • Increasing use of smart machines means that outsourced or captive finance factories. Finance headcount gj_YfarYlagfkemklj]eg\]dl`]jgd]kg^keYjlh]ghd]& in these factories will reduce, with teams focused largely on As technology advances, people’s roles will also have to managing exceptions. change. Smart machines should be used in a way that drives • Egj]^gjoYj\%dggcaf_ value and complements an organization’s people, impacting The future finance function will combine finance data with productivity and making day-to-day roles more engaging. external information to help model and predict business Given these challenges, CFOs will need to: outcomes, identifying the most profitable opportunities. • Design a future operating model that focuses their best • Better aligned to the business people on key priorities and delivers a smarter, more There will be much closer alignment and engagement with forward-looking and resilient finance function. the business, with finance professionals spending more time working alongside key internal stakeholders, challenging • Challenge their own and others’ assumptions about what their strategic plans and modeling and predicting constitutes finance talent, how to find the right profiles and different scenarios. develop the skills needed to thrive in an increasingly • More resilient connected, data-rich future. The future finance function will be more focused on :mad\af_YkeYjl]j$egj]^gjoYj\%dggcaf_Yf\ managing uncertainty through strategic risk management. resilient finance function Finance will use predictive analytics to investigate the implications of strategic decisions, to plan for possible The transformation of finance function operating models has shocks and to manage the growing threat of cyber risk. already delivered greater efficiency and has freed on the best CFOs believe that strategic risk management is among the top finance talent to focus on high-value activities. Many CFOs capabilities that organizations will demand of their future have brought transactional accounting and finance processes finance functions (see Chart 4, p.17). This capability is into centralized “finance factory” models, featuring shared considered particularly important by Group CFOs, 62% of services, managed services and outsourcing. Where this has whom consider it critical, compared with 53% of Regional occurred, finance functions have become leaner and more and Divisional CFOs. efficient, and CFOs and their key executives have more time to focus on their organization’s strategic priorities. “ The role of finance in data analytics and forecasting is, I think, at the core of what we have to do, and what we’re going to have to do more and more. Let’s assume that all our customers are on the cloud. We’re going to know in real time what they do, how they use the systems, what they do with it and the kind of competitive software they buy, so we’re going to have full visibility on what the customer will do with our software. Consumption is the new currency.” Claude Changarnier Vice President of International Finance, Microsoft International

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