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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Innovation and Finance Part 1 – Customer Focus

How can Finance support but control innovation in business

Two innovation problems for Finance When we think about the attitude of Finance towards innovation, there are two key questions: What should our attitude be towards business innovation? And, What should our attitude be towards internal innovation within Finance? It’s going to take me two posts to deal with these questions. But, before I kick…

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7 Things Finance Can Do to Make Business Projects Successful

Finance and projects

I’ve worked in many businesses, and only two of them had what I would have judged to be a proper grip on change projects. In the other ones, senior Finance people would sometimes talk disparagingly about certain projects, and almost ‘tut’ with disapproval in seeing projects underdelivering and overrunning on time and costs. I never…

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How to Develop KPIs That More Than Count

How to develop Key Performance Indicators that explicitly link through strategy

This article looks at how to go about developing Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). If you’re interested in this topic enough to start reading, you’ll know that KPIs give you a richer view of performance than the normal accounting stuff that we produce in Finance. You’re also probably painfully aware that there are so many metrics…

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What does a good forecast look like?

How do you know whether your forecast is any good?

“Does anyone in FP&A ever review the accuracy of their predictive financial models from time to time?” That’s the question I posed on LinkedIn recently, and it generated a surprisingly good discussion. It turns out that FP&A professionals generally care quite a lot about the accuracy of their forecasts. One of the businesses I worked…

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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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The 4 ‘i’s of Stakeholder management

Stakeholder management skills

Stakeholder management (or stakeholder engagement) is one of the skills that you need in increasing measure as you develop in your business career. It’s a strange term, I think, because it sounds like terminology. Do you know what I mean? The thing is, stakeholder engagement is not just one skill. It’s a group of skills,…

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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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