The future CFO is now!

“The Future CFO is now!” That’s part of the title I’ve been given for my presentation at the CFO Summit in Milan on 6-7 June 2018. So, I’ve been thinking a bit about how the role of the CFO has changed over the last 30 years…. You know, ever since I qualified as an accountant…

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Humans are Better Than Robots – And That’s Why Automation Makes Sense

robotic process automation

With all the scare stories about “robots taking our jobs”, it’s easy to get the impression that we’d rather have robots doing jobs because they’re better than us. Recently, I had to do a 2-minute explanation of why Finance should pursue automation opportunities. And I was given a PowerPoint slide with 10 or so bullet…

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This one big mistake can wreck your Finance Transformation

Finance Transformation wants to add value but shouldn't do it by focusing on cost savings

Finance Transformation programmes will often include something like the following line in their business case: “Capacity created by automation and process efficiency will be reinvested in value-adding activity.” Sounds great, doesn’t it? What could possibly be wrong with that? Well, as an aspiration, it’s got a lot going for it. The trouble is, no one…

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Why Simplification is Not Always Simple

Simple for whom?

In the generally accepted paradigm for the Finance function, where Finance is an overhead that needs to be kept down and reduced constantly, efficiency is often the name of the game. Simplification is one way of achieving that. And the ways we get efficiency are normally through simplification, standardisation and automation. Those three words were…

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Finance transformation without new software or shared services

Transform vision in Finance first

This article was inspired by a comment that Andrew Jepson made in response to Part 2 of my series on Innovation and Finance, which spoke about the attitude that Finance should have to innovation within its own function. He said (in commenting on my LinkedIn post), “Can innovation in finance be as simple as: Put…

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Innovation and Finance Part 3 – Big Software Vendors Discourage Innovation

We don't need no innovation?

Ok, so my Innovation and Finance series was supposed to have two parts. But I thought of a third, and potentially a fourth! In the previous parts, I’ve spoken about how Finance should be supportive of business innovation that benefits the customer and brings competitive advantage. And I’ve spoken about how Finance should be cautious…

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Innovation and Finance Part 2 – Another Brick in the Wall

We don't need no innovation?

This is my second article looking at the relationship of Finance with innovation. Last time I shared a few thoughts on how Finance can support strategic business innovation, which benefits customers and provides competitive advantage. This time I want to turn my attention to innovation within Finance, affecting what we do on a day to…

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Assessing Finance Effectiveness

Is your Finance function effective?

There are many different ways of looking at the performance of a Finance function. As with any question of performance, before you can tell how well you’re doing, you have to know “what good looks like”. How can we tell if we’re doing a good job if we don’t know what the definition of “good”…

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Does Finance Need to Take More Risks?

Do we want risk takers in Finance? Does that conjure up positive or negative images in your mind? I sent some thoughts on this out in the Supercharges Finance newsletter recently (if you haven’t yet signed up for that, click here and join the other Finance superchargers!). I don’t normally put the same content on…

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What’s Best for Getting Process Efficiency in Finance?

robotic process automation

Here’s Something New You Should Be Considering I am trying to start this article in a way that won’t put people off reading before I even start. And that means going against the SEO principles I’ve been taught, and not mentioning my keyword straight out. You see, I think that the very terminology being used…

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