What will the future hold for data and finance in 2021?
We’ve learned hard lessons throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and we turn to the new year with new insights that can help shape the changes we want to see in data and analytics for finance. While it may be impossible to forecast what will happen, it always pays to be prepared and be ahead of the competition.
This end-of-year article explores the top business intelligence (BI) trends that we expect to see in finance for 2021.
Break Down Siloes in Finance
In 2020, we learned that financial data should no longer be siloed from the rest of the organization, nor should top executives have to wait until the end of the month to check invoices and reports.
For the next year, businesses should learn from the challenges we faced in 2020 and ensure that finance teams and other departments can work better together to make informed decisions aligned with business goals. To do this, everyone in the organization needs to understand what the finance team does, how they’re tracking financial performance, and what is expected of them. This makes it easier to facilitate faster requests, speed up approvals, and promote better accountability not just for managers but across every valued contributor in the organization.
Not all decision-makers in the organization have financial backgrounds. Breaking through the finance department silo can improve efficiency, productivity, and profitability by promoting financial accountability and making sure it is well-understood across the organization.
Luckily, today’s BI software helps make the financial process more seamless by getting rid of common barriers for business owners and managers to stay updated with financial performance regularly. Having real-time access to financial KPIs promotes accountability. It helps people see the full impact of every business decision to work with everyone else to ensure the strategy is executed well to improve the bottom line.
The Rise of Integrated Budgeting Tools
The pandemic has been a huge wake-up call for businesses that we live in an increasingly volatile world, where no one is given any legroom to think about their next move. Businesses have closed, and resilient economies have crashed. If you want to thrive, you must adapt and respond quickly or get left behind.
To keep up with changing markets, we expect to see a need to integrate budgeting and forecasting with BI to help companies visualize and align their strategy.
More businesses are adopting software tools to help with their budgeting process because with challenging markets, you need access to reliable and accurate data. Integrating these tools can make the financial process much simpler and more collaborative, which can improve decision-making. Most BI software like Performance Canvas also has access to live forecasts and what-if analysis, making it easy to compare and contrast what has been budgeted versus what has been achieved.
Financial services companies need accurate data and detailed information to make informed decisions and offer their customers valuable products. High-quality data is necessary to make effective financial decisions and reduce risk. For these reasons, many financial services organizations invest in AI to streamline their data analysis and achieve more intelligent workflows.
To better understand outliers in business, augmented analytics is expected to be more prevalent next year. Gartner reports a significant increase in expanded data management, using AI and machine learning techniques to drive efficiency and streamline operations.
Business users and data citizens can comfortably explore data and draw insights, while augmented analytics does the heavy lifting in the background.
Adopting AI and augmented analytics can help businesses and financial service companies make better sense of their data to gather the insights they need while having augmented analytics take care of the rigors of data gathering and reporting.
AI and augmented analytics are expected to play a significant role in helping financial services companies to improve their bottom line by having access to comprehensive data that enhances decision-making.
Moving to the Cloud
With more companies having to speed up their digital transformation efforts after the pandemic and more people shifting to working remotely, cloud operations are expected to increase even further in the coming year. Data from a Forrester report indicates that the global public cloud infrastructure is predicted to grow by 35% in 2021.
Cloud software offers more mobility and flexibility for organizations. Still, it also improves collaboration and makes it easy to share data, leading to significant savings for companies looking to no longer being restricted by on-premise systems. This is a big win for business leaders looking for future-ready platforms that can give them the scalability they need at a lower cost.
Organizations who are still not sure about moving everything to the cloud can also opt for hybrid solutions instead that offer both on-premise and cloud support, so they can quickly shift their data both ways.
Performance Canvas: Helping You Stay Competitive For 2021
Better data integrations and support for improved collaboration will continue to be the game changers for business intelligence tools. These features make it easy to harness crucial business insights, review processes, and help companies gather actionable data, the BI tools of the future are seen to break down siloes and bring teams together.
PCF Cloud offers one of the best business intelligence tools that provide integrated budgeting, analysis, forecasting, reporting, and consolidation on a development and deployment platform. It fits the bill not only for your next financial modeling software but also as a complete BI tool that gives you access to automated integration with your ERP system.
With its robust integration capabilities, users can access automated data imports and extracts to on-premise applications or on the cloud.
Explore why PCF Cloud is the ideal choice for your next BI software now and into the future. Sign up for a free demo today.