Insight

The future of finance

The CFO agenda for disruption

View on the future of finance

KPMG’s Don Mailliard, Corporate Services Line Leader, and John E. Mulhall, Financial Management Service Network Lead, share their views on the future of finance.

 

In the wake of rapid disruption, CEOs are looking to the finance function to take on a considerably broader and deeper set of strategic responsibilities than ever before.

Leading finance organizations have developed an agenda to deal with disruption. And with a clear line of sight to the impact of disruption on both the business model and the operating model, the CFO has the chance to turn disruptors into opportunities for competitive advantage and growth.


Looking at the future of finance

Innovation and investment


When thinking about how to strategically allocate capital, the most progressive CFOs adopt the mindset of a venture capitalist (VC), especially when it comes to investments in innovation. Questions they carefully consider when evaluating through a VC lens include:

  • How does business model disruption affect the fundamental economics that govern my industry?
  • What level of disruption is the industry and my company facing?
  • What external market signals should my business be looking at?
  • How should my enterprise approach innovation investments?

Extreme automation


Finance professionals must embrace technology disruptors to transform their operating models and unlock the benefits of extreme automation

Successful finance functions will make good use of blockchain, data analytics, and other enabling technologies, while emerging technologies will change the nature of shared services centers. Plus, businesses can exploit artificial intelligence for sharper predictive insights and better deployment of capital.

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Organization and talent


In a rapidly changing environment, finance organizations must assess new work to be done, and how this translates to the skill sets of their workforce.

Attracting, building, and retaining talent will look different in the future. It will be essential to address critical aspects of talent management holistically—from sourcing nontraditional backgrounds, to redefining roles and core competencies, to rotating finance high performers and future leaders throughout the business.

Service delivery model


Each decade has brought significant change to service delivery. As the scope and structure of finance shifts, service delivery requires another dramatic shift.

The right service delivery model optimizes autolmation and balances global, regional, and local activities with the goal of enabling strategic business partnering. 

Risks and controls


Extreme automation promises to improve controls while reducing internal and external compliance costs. But despite the potential benefits, disruptive technologies also pose significant challenges. From process integration and system compatibility issues to data protection and privacy concerns, risks must be proactively managed and continuously monitored.

Insights and analysis

Extreme automation demands that CFOs act—or risk the relevance of the finance function. New research from Harvard Business Review Analytic Services, sponsored by KPMG, uncovers CFO considerations.

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