Connected financial closure, connected planning, connected reporting… all fundamental finance integration processes. But why “connected”? Connecting people with data, financial reports with plans, allows teams (connected) to be more agile.
These kinds of solutions are not new, and they are not currently structured to support the complexities of large organizations to guide choices quickly.
A Gartner forecast claims that by 2023, repetitive and routine data management tasks for the finance team will be reduced, freeing up to 20% of their time for high-value collaboration, training, and analytics.
Precisely for this reason we need to go beyond the connected planning.
Why? Let’s start talking about the challenges it contains. Connected planning solutions are a viable alternative to people trying to overcome spreadsheets, especially when complexity is reduced. But what if a large organization, operating all over the world, had specific requirements?
As you know, these types of organizations have dozens of different processes related to financial planning, and it becomes difficult to meet all these requirements. Each application will need to be connected, increasing the risk, cost and complexity of the finance team.
CPMs also create technical and administrative complexity for finance teams: think for example of data shift and reconciliation, metadata management, the monitoring of latencies and also safety when you are in a situation with multiple products or fragmented models. This type of activity is expensive, and time-consuming: this results in a decrease in the ability of the finance team to focus on the strategy area and support the decision-making process in this way.
It’s true: data management and administration are the biggest challenges for organizations that would like the CFO and his team to have more impact in business leadership.
Moreover, we must not forget that many connected finance solutions are not able to provide all the information instantly. An example? Debts/credits, timing, hierarchies, dimensionality and currency conversion must be completely rebuilt from scratch.
Not to mention the fact that most organizations are experiencing change, and for this reason the need to have a unified view of the situation is growing. Surely many will find themselves juggling with silos, not only of data, but also related to planning. Finance, HR, Sales… they make decisions based on numbers. But it often happens that those numbers don’t coincide with each other, and that’s a big problem.
And how can we solve it? With integrations?
No. Unfortunately increasing integrations would only potentially worsen criticality, as more people and time will be needed.
Evolution, the path to the future, must lead to a single version of truth in all processes.
So what? What’s our advice?
We believe that today’s organizations should choose a unified platform for all performance management processes, such as an intelligent finance one. This would allow them to overcome the limits of both spreadsheets and connected finance solutions, unifying financial consolidation, planning, reporting and analysis at one point.
An intelligent finance platform can provide controls and business standards, encompassing multiple solutions for actual data, budgets, predictions, plans, reconciliations, analytics, and more at one point.
This solution eliminates risky integrations, validations, and reconciliations between multiple products, applications, and modules.
Has your organization tried OneStream yet? Contact us, in a short demo we will be able to demonstrate how much advantages can create the adoption of this solution.