The Successful Business Intelligence Alternative for Finance Departments

by DataRails

Technology adoption refers to the acceptance, integration, and use of new technology in society. A typical adoption cycle involves the following segments:

1. Innovators develop a technology
2. Early adopters test and begin using it
3. The early majority and the late majority represent the bulk of users
4. Laggards adopt a technology last

If we look at different organizational departments, we typically see sales, marketing and R&D falling into the categories of early adopters or the early to late majority.
On the other hand finance, and particularly the FP&A function, is always a laggard.
While the finance department leads the direction of an organization, the function hasn’t seen much change over the years. Teams today rely heavily on Excel, just as they did some twenty years ago. Instead of leveraging the power of the large datasets available today, data analysis and business insights still depend on individual knowledge. This raises the following questions:

  • Why are identical processes in different departments handled differently?
  • How come when a marketing professional needs to understand his data he can turn to a dedicated system, while the FP&A professional goes to his ERP, exports data manually, and loads it into Excel?

One standout reason is that finance professionals prefer to rely on methods of work they feel they simply can’t live without. However, in a world where data and analytics are increasingly merging with organizational functions, finance has much to gain.

In this eBook we’ll be covering the role of FP&A, why Excel is such a critical part of it, and what new finance tools have to offer.


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