The Next Evolution Of Financial Leadership

By: John Walker

How CFOs Can Leverage Analytics in the Workplace

The level of ‘buzz’ following big data and analytics utilities has reached fever pitch in the contemporary workplace, due in large part to the significant opportunities and advantages these tools provide for professionals across a myriad of industries. Having witnessed the substantive results obtained by their peers, many executives, particularly those tasked with developing short and long-term strategies backed by quantitative research, are seeking to dive into the world of analytics and invest in the tools they need to amplify the performance of their company.
Although knowing which tools and resources to explore is certainly critical when entering the world of analytics for the first time, it is also quite important to understand precisely how such data analysis can be deployed.

Redefining the Identity of the 21st Century CFO

Never before has the need for flexibility and cross-disciplinary engagement within the workplace been so great. With this in mind, CFOs are now finding themselves tasked with supervising not only the conventional series of parameters typically relegated to their position but also a number of tangentially related areas, including procurement, supply chain management, sales, marketing etc. With such a wide range of tasks presented, CFOs must incorporate new resources into their toolkit in order to be able to effectively manage their new responsibilities. It is here where data analytics can prove to be of immense assistance.

Rethinking Synergy

Perhaps one of the greatest stumbling blocks on the road to operational efficiency within the corporate environment has always been the need for a “middleman” capable of translating data and content produced by one specialist division in order to ensure that it can be properly evaluated and understood by another. Not only did this require extensive time and effort, but it also severely undermined a CFO’s ability to react quickly to perceived changes in the marketplace or economy at large. Using the collation and visualization tools incorporated into the vast majority of industry-standard analytics packages today, CFO’s can quickly access a wealth of information which they can then parse and distribute amongst other executive leadership as well as front-line managers on an as-needed basis. Using analytics software, CFOS can all but eliminate the frustrating lag times, which have hampered leadership teams and decision makers for years.

Embracing Diversity

It is the kaleidoscopic array of needs, tasks, challenges and opportunities prevalent in the 21st century global economy which makes data analytics so appealing for the modern CFO. Data no longer originates from a single evaluative source – instead, businesses are converting social media activity, customer surveys, pricing studies and a host of other data rich sources into actionable decisions using data analytics. The opportunities presented to CFOs today can only be realized if the right resources are put into play, and this is precisely why data analytics now plays such an important role in businesses around the world!