Another notable finding from our research was that only one-quarter of finance teams are making extensive use of self-service data for business leaders. CFOs who are not focusing on this area may be missing an opportunity, as the concept of the democratization of data has gained traction in recent years. Making data widely available across the organization lets individuals readily access the information they need, enabling them to make more accurate decisions. This can be a powerful tool in engaging different parts of the organization and encouraging them to play an active part in strategic initiatives.
In the context of finance, the democratization of data could include empowering business leaders across the organization via the adoption of self-service analytics. By taking this approach, CFOs can enable their peers to combine different data sets and gain a clearer understanding of how the decisions they are making could impact the bottom line.
While the research indicates that overall only a quarter of finance teams are currently tapping into these opportunities, there were significant differences between the different industry sectors polled. For example, 41 percent of finance leaders in the investment management sector said they are making extensive use of self-service analytics. And while insurance also has a relatively high response, other sectors lag behind:
- Investment management: 41 percent
- Insurance: 40 percent
- Software development: 28 percent
- Healthcare: 26 percent
- Hospitality: 24 percent
- Retail: 24 percent
TELUS International’s Rodick is one finance leader who believes that self-service analytics can transform the speed and effectiveness of decision-making, with his team working on a self-service scorecard for the company’s executive team. “The information will be at their fingertips and will then trigger more questions,” he explains. “So, if someone sees something abnormal in the KPIs, they can reach out to finance to dig in—and hopefully we’ll already be digging in. But the idea is they have access to some data right out of the gate.”
For the full research findings behind the “Finance Redefined” global study, read the report here.