Dynamic planning is centered on being more predictive and strategic, with plans and forecasts focused on specific key drivers important to an individual business. Planning is also more continuous, with organizations doing perpetual predictive modeling and forecasting on those key drivers on a more-frequent basis. For example, a retail organization might make more frequent changes in allotments to buyers based on real-time store-level forecasts at the SKU level, which can help them better plan and make adjustments to meet their business goals.
This new model for planning is the mountain that finance organizations need to summit. But getting there takes more than will—it will require a technology backbone that makes it possible. For one thing, organizations need to move toward the creation of integrated systems that can provide unified and real-time inputs of large data sets. Those organizations that can link forecasting, planning, and general ledger systems have an opportunity to streamline the planning process, ensure data integrity, and provide tighter governance and control.
Organizations are beginning to realize the promise of “digital finance” and drive to the benefits available by modernizing their core systems. New planning systems that leverage cloud, in-memory, and advanced analytics are enabling more sophisticated predictive modeling using real-time data for faster and accurate forecasting. These innovations are also helping to create a more democratized and controlled way of sharing budgets and plans to gather input, collaborate, and more quickly arrive at the detailed operational and financial insights they have long sought. The results include abilities such as granular exception management, exponentially faster transaction and business intelligence processing for moment-in-time close and performance analysis, real-time mining of organizational data in support of business strategy, and a deeper awareness of the data patterns and trends that can unlock repetitive reporting, customer engagement, and data visualization.