The rise of Financial Analytics in Enterprise Strategy

by Francesco Morini 

Traditionally, business relied solely on general ledger systems for storing and analyzing financial data. More recently, continuous technological advancements together with evolving business models and processes have made these static systems less and less effective in helping increase financial productivity. The main reason is that they do not take into account extra or external data and future events.

With the rise of analytics, in many organizations Finance is expanding its role, providing increasing value in other functional areas and looking for ways to deliver greater value as a business function. Nowadays Finance has become the enabler of analytics and decision support. The reasons are simple: as the economy evolves, Finance data is rapidly being deployed outside its traditional scope. Finance also has an ability to apply analytics above and beyond traditional delivery channels.

As individuals gradually shift from using old business models to newer ones, the need for financial analytics will continue to grow; business-to-consumer and business-to-business transactions are growing more and more popular and changing the fundamentals of the game. As a result, intangible assets, such as information and analysis, are becoming increasingly valuable for increasing productivity.

The office of finance is no longer relegated to running reports and measuring results against key performance indicators. Today’s CFO plays a leading role in strategically funding the strategies and operations of the business and in selecting the KPIs that help organizations focus and drive to success.

Finance is key in expanding analytics activities into areas that grow revenue and improve margins in their organization. In addition to core analytics activities like revenue management, tax analysis and investor relations, Finance leads the way in bringing previously unrealized value and growth potential to the organization through “Finance-owned” analytics activities such as model-based forecasting and capital portfolio optimization.

Financial crises increased pressure on finance leaders; crucial to the CFO’s effectiveness is the ability to measure and monitor financial and operational business performance, anticipate gaps, analyze causes and quickly assess alternatives—with insight and confidence, providing inputs into enterprise strategy.

Companies in need of assistance with financial analytics have actually two options: one strategy is to hire an analytics firm to work on site with accountants, managers and executives to help gather and analyze data; another, less expensive option is for companies to use a financial analytics software program.

In the ecosystem of Performance Management software, some covers the financial management, others covers analytics. Here at Tagetik, we’ve combined them in our Financial Analytics Intelligence to help our customers in their efforts to manage their financial resources continuously and to preserve—and increase—shareholder value. We bring an industry-focused approach to our clients’ needs, leveraging the experience of our organization to deliver the value from finance analytics that our customers expect.

What are your thoughts? Do you already have a Financial Analytics strategy? Which one?

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