Technology and Data News and Events

How finance leaders are accelerating their focus on data

by Mike Jones in Cloud, Data Analytics, Digital Technology 17/11/2021

How can finance leaders leverage analytics and cloud systems to improve their business functions?

Our workforce today is experiencing significant change. Technology and the rise of automotive products are transforming how processes are done and how senior leaders manage their business, particularly in the case of CFOs. In the last year, digital technology has accelerated the need for businesses to adapt their working models to remain flexible, smarter and efficient.

Businesses that enhance their focus on data and analytics to support their transformation are often considered more successful. Investing in these products, however, is only the beginning. There are several things financial leaders should consider to leverage the potential of analytics on the finance service.

Investing in cloud technology

Businesses are consumed in data but yet are still hungry for additional insights. The ability to utilise data insights can determine the success of a business, and while many leaders believe they are capable of leveraging data, studies suggest that those leading the way are experiencing a 7% higher revenue growth.

This process involves the following measures:

  1. Real-time insights in data allow businesses to be proactive and explore what is happening through analysing trends and analytics.
  2. Businesses will often interpret data in various ways. Cloud technology will allow finance leaders to measure data more flexibly and transparently. This will support overall decisions and ensure finance avoids any unnecessary or time-consuming efforts.
  3. Being capable of benchmarking information is important for businesses to understand how they compare to others.

Businesses are looking towards the future and appreciate that investing in cloud and finance technology will ultimately benefit their organisation. For over 50% of businesses, the cloud has moved beyond an idea to a reality in terms of integrating cloud-focused HR tools. This represents a key force in transforming today’s workplace, enabling businesses to make smarter decisions. 

Create a clear plan

To enable growth, remain resilient and flexible, businesses need to ensure they have a clear strategy on how they can operate in the cloud. Consistent planning represents a key factor for exploring new growth options. An annual report is no longer sufficient. Applying tools like AI, ML and predictive analytics enable businesses to deploy reports and plans more effectively while reducing potential risk to their business.

Leverage the potential of collaborating data

Consolidating finance, HR and data in one place can create multiple benefits. It can lead to better outcomes while enabling each area to reach its own goals. Consolidating all information enables a business to think more holistically and ultimately make better decisions for the long term.

The success of a business will depend on whether your team has the necessary tools to be more efficient, flexible and operate securely. Being open and capable of collaborating are the new ways of working, and the cloud allows this in many ways. Not only will this lower time spent on manual tasks, but it also enables businesses to make real-time, data-driven plans to grow and attract the best talent.

Measuring results

For most, salary and benefits represent the biggest expense, meaning two major cost drivers are people related. Businesses often spend money on products and technology that fail to show ROI or direct benefits to employees. If employees aren’t satisfied, engagement will drop, and benefits to a company will be lost. This has become even more challenging as the pandemic has made it easier for people to move jobs.

With finance playing a critical part in business decisions, it must be capable of determining what data is needed and analysing it effectively to deliver the necessary actions. Measuring employee engagement and goals is one big step in talent retention.

Making the commitment

Cloud systems enable businesses to target specific talent and identify the skills and experience needed for the most vital roles. Not only will it improve finance functions, but it also enables HR teams to determine the best candidates, highlight potential engagement issues and identify what employees are looking for in a business.

Consolidating finance, HR and data in the cloud integrate valuable insights across your organisation, enabling teams a better understanding of their data, where there may be potential gaps and how to optimise particular areas to generate better and smarter results.