The close financial process must adhere to statutory, management, regulatory, and performance reporting requirements. However, many companies are unprepared for rapid changes and new information requirements.
As a result, CFOs must improve their immediate financial process in 2023 to respond agilely to market pressures. This will help organizations stay competitive in the coming years.
Improving the immediate financial process involves legacy systems, data quality management, strategic alignment, and support from the C suite. Although there is no standard method for success, following general guidelines can help.
Implement these tips for CFOs to improve their immediate financial process in 2023.
Update Your Legacy Systems
The immediate financial process’s growing speed and information demands require the latest technology. Therefore, you must determine how well your existing technology can meet these demands.
Focus on your software tools, levels of standardization, automation gaps, and legacy systems. Then, create a plan to update your technology as needed.
Fill in Your Automation Gaps
Your enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems are essential for the immediate financial process. However, they function primarily as a system of record.
Therefore, your ERP systems might not be equipped for the speed and information delivery needed for financial reporting. As a result, your leadership team must find creative solutions to supplement your ERP with additional workflow capability, robotic process automation (RPA), and modern systems for financial consolidation.
You may consider implementing a corporate performance management (CPM) system. This provides a range of specialized capabilities, including reporting, analytics, and disclosure management. Other benefits include budgeting, planning, and forecasting.
Manage Your Data
Quality data management and governance are essential for the immediate financial process. You must understand the sources of your data to complete the steps correctly.
Your data architectures must be scalable to meet regulatory demands and other information needs as they arise. This requires clear lines of responsibility and ownership of data.
A CPM system integrates with your ERP and other methods to provide speed, insight, and control for the immediate financial process. This supports quick insights for real-time collaboration, data-backed decisions, and flexible reporting.
Prepare for Change
Implementing substantial changes requires extensive planning, communication, and stakeholder engagement. You must align your differences with your company’s strategy and the relevant employees with the processes and each other. These actions increase the likelihood of success.
Ask your IT team to promote the benefits of the changes to the rest of your organization. Your IT team’s collective knowledge, skills, and abilities equip them to answer employee questions and gain support for the changes.
Engage company leaders in supporting the changes. Include the implementation plan and how the system and process changes will enhance finance process capabilities. Having them understand the business case for the changes and how they will solve problems is essential for success.
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