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CFOs are expected to provide valuable, hands-on partnering with their peers in the business, beyond their ability to provide standard financial reports year after year. Meanwhile, many finance organizations were built to deliver information rather than insight. That’s one reason so many CFOs are turning to business analytics.
“How can we develop more useful partnerships with our counterparts in the business?” That question, or some variation of it, is one that has been asked countless times in CFOs’ offices in recent years. Why? Because over the past few years, business leaders have opened their eyes to the value that CFOs can bring throughout the business—well beyond their ability to provide the same standard financial reports year after year.
For CFOs, this is a big opportunity. Who doesn’t want to be asked for their strategic insights? This is also a big challenge, especially in finance organizations that for years have been hard-wired to deliver information rather than insight. That’s one important reason so many CFOs are turning to business analytics.
What’s at stake
If Finance misses the opportunity to lead the way on analytics, it also misses the chance to evolve into a true partner to the business. With analytics, CFOs can position Finance to serve not only as a steward of company data but also as a data strategist—analyzing models and predicting future behavior. That ability can propel Finance far beyond the traditional responsibilities of closing the books and performing external reporting. The result? Better business decisions throughout the organization.
Analytics connections with other roles
- CEO | Seeking a vision for analytics—needs to be comfortable with data quality and integrity since analytics is informing business decisions.
- CMO | Needs to establish linkage between operational data and financial data/metrics. Grappling with question of who “owns”marketing data within the organization.
- CRO | Determining how to account for revenue—and how sales data flows into financials.
CIO | Designing data models, developing infrastructure, driving requirements for analytics throughout the organization.
Crunchy questions for CFOs
As CFOs look to expand their partnering capabilities with peers throughout the business, it helps to know exactly what questions they should be answering. In our view, the more specific, the better. Just as important, CFOs who bring a set of highly focused questions to the table when meeting with business leaders are better able to make their case—and secure the support they need to be successful.
Learn more about CFO Analytics and crunchy questions that CFO's should be answering today with analytics.
Corner Office Analytics infographic
Business analytics used to be the domain of a few select teams buried deep in the business. Today, it lands on the agendas of most CXOs. And success hinges on CXOs’ abilities to collaborate with one another. In our Corner Office Analytics series, we’re focusing on the analytics needs of these senior leaders—and how they intersect with one another.