Strategy Gartner

Organizations are Still Struggling with Analytics

Sponsored by Gartner

The majority of technology deficiencies identified in the 2015 “Technology Issues for Financial Executives” survey can be addressed by making strategic improvements in analytics.

In the 2015 survey, Gartner presented CFOs with 14 business process areas and asked them to select the top three that need improved technological support.  All but reducing operating expenses are directly linked to business intelligence (BI), financial corporate performance management (CPM) and strategic CPM analytics.

The top business process areas that need technology investment are:

  • Facilitating analysis and decision-making (60%, down from 62% in 2014);
  • Improving the quality of data for decision-making (52%); and
  • Ongoing monitoring of business performance (51%, down from 57% in 2014).
For the past seven years, FEI’s Committee on Finance & IT (CFIT) and Financial Executives Research Foundation (FERF) has partnered with Gartner to survey CFOs to better understand their current use of technology and what additional IT support they still need.

BI, analytics and performance management have been the top areas for CFO IT interest for the past five years.  Most technology constraints concern the lack of business insight availability, and the inability to use business applications for process efficiency.  CFOs have been dealing with aging systems and there are new tools available to support enterprise processes such as performance management.  Many IT organizations have made initial investments, but these tend to be tactically focused and don’t address the more fundamental issues of data quality and consistency, which require CFOs and their finance teams to work closely with BI specialists in IT.

What does Gartner recommend?

  • Identify the priorities for BI and analytics, and understand that there is no single technology solution for all your challenges.
  • Ensure that the most experienced finance people are deployed to work with IT to build and implement a comprehensive BI, analytics and performance management strategy.
  • Evaluate new product offerings in self-service data preparation and smart data discovery to identify how these could empower finance users.
  • Implement process, organizational and cultural changes to support validation and promotion of BI and analytics content created by finance users.
To download Gartners’ complete 2015 survey results, click here.

To take the 2016 survey, click here.