Finance Assessment and Visioning

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Positioning your organization today for the future

CFOs and their teams are struggling with the increasing and competing demands placed upon them, particularly coming out of recession. With the growing compliance burden, the finance function has become subject to increasing cost pressure even while the demand for more and better management information challenges the function to do more at lower cost.

CFOs are juggling three agendas — insight, efficiency and compliance and control — and are looking to strike the right balance. They want to ensure that the way they are steering the function and partnering with the business is paving the road towards a high-performing function for the future.

Insight

As we move forward in an environment of increased volatility, insight continues to be key in helping businesses stay ahead of changing conditions. This will include enhanced strategic planning, scenario analysis and forecasting. Finance needs to embrace the business partnering role and develop the right skills and behaviours to deliver it. A good enterprise performance management (EPM) program can help create a performance culture very different to that of the traditional 'scorekeeper' role played by finance.

Efficiency

As we move into the next decade, the CFO should focus on understanding the following:

  • The function's ability to perform tasks in a timely and cost-effective manner
  • How simplified and standardized processes that leverage technology might impact the business
  • Whether the elimination of non-core activities through shared services/outsourcing could be of benefit
  • How much investment in people and cultural change is required to underpin it all

Controls and compliance

During times of business change, it is essential to focus on control implications and the new financial, operational, and compliance risks that business change brings. By doing so, the reorganized processes are more resilient and sustainable. Critical to achieving all this is the organization's culture and integration of controls into its everyday ways of working. Without a strong controls culture, efforts to sustain compliance and controls could be wasted.

How PwC can help

Leveraging PwC’s experience can help you to lead with your current business strategy, transform your finance function to achieve sustainable improvement. At PwC, we believe that achieving a high-performing finance involves three essential elements:

  • Business insight. How do you align finance with the business to provide an effective performance management and challenge mechanism?
  • Transaction processing efficiency. What initiatives could you undertake to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your finance processes?
  • Compliance and control. How do you ensure that you have the appropriate balance of robust controls without constraining the business?

We are there to help your organization in each of these areas. By embracing leading practices, PwC can help you with the following:

  • Create a vision that is evocative and future-focused
  • Integrate finance activities with business strategy, elevating the finance function as a value driver
  • Conduct finance function assessments using benchmarks and diagnostics
  • Develop a roadmap for finance
  • Eliminate business complexity and redundant structures
  • Lessen non-value add activities to improve focus on business analysis and support
  • Leverage shared services to deliver routine, high-volume transaction processing
  • Align finance skills and responsibilities to stakeholder needs