Finding the truth

Finance: The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth

Author: Mark Bodger, Business Development Director, ICit Business Intelligence

This blog explores insight from The IT Insider White Paper: Digital Transformation in the Financial Services Sector, which you can view and download here:

Finding the truth

How do you make fast, reliable decisions in today’s mobile, digital workplace? It’s certainly not easy. In fact, a recent study found that 75% of companies fail to execute on their business strategy because they are unable to co-ordinate and align resources quickly enough to address the opportunities that arise.

Data is a particularly critical asset for financial services companies, where business is built on a continuous stream of transactions – each of which adds yet another row to the industry’s immense and growing ocean of data. Never before has so much data been held in so many formats and across so many devices and platforms, so harvesting and leveraging this information to gain a competitive advantage is no easy task. In a global business environment characterised by volatility, uncertainty and risk, decision making needs to be both fast and well informed. You need to be able to react quickly to unforeseen events and seize opportunities as soon as they present themselves, since competitive advantage is often short-lived.

But with financial and operational risk being a rising concern in today’s fast-paced digital world, business leaders also need to be circumspect. They need to look to the future, the past, and inside and outside their organisations for answers to important questions. They need to utilise both internal and external data sources and construct forward-looking scenarios with all the foresight that human and machine can deliver – assessing both the risks and rewards that lie ahead, dependent on the strategies and actions that are taken.

Slow and steady won’t win the race

The reality is that most finance teams still spend too much time in manual, spreadsheet-based processes - collecting, consolidating and validating data before they can even begin to analyse it. Because of that, finance professionals are often too slow in delivering the plans, budgets, forecasts, reports and value-added analysis that management requires.

That’s why leading organisations are investing in software to drive greater speed, agility and foresight - helping them anticipate and respond to the unpredictable forces driving the economy. They seek systems that provide the agility to continuously align financial plans and budgets with corporate objectives - linked to operating tactics and market events.

Get your planning & analytics up-to-speed

So, how can you get from where you are now to where you need to be? Industry analysis indicates that although the financial sector has a strong core of analytics capabilities – designed to address structured data, such as basic queries, predictive modelling and optimisation - it lags behind other industries when it comes to tackling unstructured data sets and taking advantage of advanced visualisation capabilities. With ‘big data’ sets too large for business or financial analysts to view through traditional reporting and mining tools, a different approach and more powerful analytics engine is needed if you want to gain the speed, agility and foresight needed to anticipate and react to changing market conditions.

Download The IT Insider White Paper: Digital Transformation in the Financial Sector

Download now

Bringing together in-depth insight and real-world examples from a number of specialists within the financial services sector, this White Paper explores how you can:

  • Tackle digital disruption – driving deeper customer engagement and innovating to stay competitive
  • Create value for shareholders by focusing on areas that offer profitable growth at low cost and risk
  • Meet risk and regulatory compliance challenges head on