How FP&A Can Embrace Big Data to Drive Smarter Decisions

Finance is in a unique position to assume a leadership role in the adoption of big data strategies. While it may not need to “own” the data, it can act as a central hub for analytics, pulling from multiple sources of information and using the data to inform is core planning processes, in particular forecasting to help drive faster and smarter management decisions.

  • Big data presents a real opportunity for finance to take a leadership role and become an analytics hub.
  • Big data enables finance to become the go-to expert in its area.
  • Traditional finance groups are adopting an evidence-based, predictive mindset.

According to The Hackett Group, big data and new tools present a tremendous opportunity for finance to take the lead, given its core fiduciary responsibilities.  “The challenge for finance is how to develop an enterprise view of analytics,” he said. “The first thing is to realize you can find out more. You can ask questions you couldn’t ask before and frame them in the form of business outcomes.”

“It’s time to move from a fixed, transactional-based approach to one that is more discovery-based and analytical.” What tools and analytical approaches to use is secondary. “It’s time to move from a fixed, transactional-based approach to one that is more discovery-based and analytical. It’s not just about reporting, but finding patterns and gaining insight,” he said. These insights can help finance provide the business with the information it needs to improve its performance and processes. “It’s a phenomenal opportunity for finance.”

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