Thursday, June 05, 2008

More Thinking, Less Bean Counting

Back in 2000, KPMG’s UK affiliate, KPMG Financial Management, made a pretty radical prediction that the finance function would no longer exist in 2010.

A few challenges have come down the accounting pike since then – SOX, tech advances, the rising global economy – and changed the nature of the finance function.

In response to those challenges, says Rodger Hill, partner and head of KPMG UK's Finance Management team:

finance focused much of its efforts and change activity on creating a robust financial control environment and leveraging global cost saving opportunities through the creation of transaction-based shared service centres. As a consequence, finance ended up with less time to undertake its insight role and to proactively drive financial performance.

Now, increasingly aware of this lack of focus, organisations are seeking to recover this lost time by embedding financial controls in technology and refocusing team efforts on enhancing financial performance management.

Or to put it another way, all that time spend extracting financial data has left finance professionals without the skills or capability to add real insight into the business. To do that, they'll need additional training.

For more on the topic, watch a video of Hill discussing the Finance of the Future 2020 white paper, or read the white paper here.

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