Gartner Identifies Top Priorities for Finance Leaders in 2020

Right before the turn of the year, Gartner conducted a 2020 Agenda Poll. What did they find?

Gartner’s poll revealed the top priorities for finance leaders in the upcoming year. Together, the three initiatives aim to improve overall operations and execution. They found that CFOs’ top priorities were:

  • Finance analytics
  • Finance organization strategy and structure
  • Finance technology optimization

“These priorities result from three key challenges CFOs must overcome…reports and analyses have insufficient forward-looking information, finance organization structure limits responsiveness to changing business needs, and technology investments — not just those in finance — have long payback periods for realizing their return on investment (ROI).”

Randeep Rathindran, Vice President, Gartner

In this article, we’ll explain each one of the three CFO priorities, as well as exactly how Datarails addresses them.

Finance Analytics

What is it?

“In a world of digital transformation and constant disruption, analysis must keep pace with queries that will change midstream and anticipate questions that have yet to be asked, but should be.”

To optimize business processes, organizations must be able to generate and leverage insightful analyses into their data. Gartner recognizes that mature reporting processes move beyond simple “board books” toward a more comprehensive “playbook,” allowing organizations to strategically leverage the data at their fingertips.

Where does Datarails come in?

Datarails, an augmented intelligence platform that empowers each finance professional to independently work with data, is the financial analytics platform you need to know about. Say goodbye to data silos with the turnkey solution that lets you quickly and easily work with cross-organizational data on your own.

Datarails enables improved reporting and insights due to features that allow for more rigorous analysis including ad hoc reporting, drill downs, variance analyses, and an office native integration. It substantially increases accessibility of valuable data, resulting in thorough consolidation of information, more accurate analyses, and decision-making powered by real-time data. With Datarails, business objectives are improved thanks to the generation of forward-looking strategic insights.

Finance organization strategy and structure

What is it?

Technology and digitalization are changing expectations of the finance function, meaning that finance teams must keep up with increasing responsibilities. To ensure this happens, one approach is to implement novel strategies and restructuring. In order to execute such changes successfully, CFOs must first have a good grasp of various efforts within the function, so that they may restructure or reallocate work optimally. How can they get started? Centralization.

 “Regardless of the size of the organization, CFOs should base decisions on finance function design on a few key principles…the first step is to settle the issue of centralization.”
-Craig Risberg, VP, Advisory, Gartner

Siloed information leads to company fragmentation, which will ultimately prevent executives from seeing the big picture clearly. Centralizing data sources across your entity assures that the executive team has access to a unified source of trusted data, allowing for more confident decision-making.

Where does Datarails come in?

Centralize data with the tool built for finance. Datarails’ patented technology centralizes scattered financial and operational data from all your organizational platforms in one place. With Datarails, bring together data from any ERP, GL, CRM, or any other transactional system, as well as data from spreadsheets of any structure or template. This means the executive team can leverage one source of truth to drive faster and more effective organizational decisions.

Finance technology optimization

What is it?

According to Gartner, finance technology optimization means extracting more value from accounting and enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems while adopting digital technologies to improve finance processes.

Today, adoption, implementation, and regular usage of finance technology is heavily dependent on the IT function. Consequently, finance technology implementations take too long- as per Gartner, seventy-six percent of CFOs report lagging ROI from technology investments due to long implementation.

Where does Datarails come in?

No one wants to be at the mercy of the IT department and their prioritization. With Datarails, finance professionals can access and leverage financial and operational data independently, regardless of technical competency. The turnkey solution allows finance professionals to quickly and easily gather, prepare, and analyze data on their own. And with an implementation process that takes less than 3 months, finance professionals can have the solution up and running in no time.

How does Datarails work?

With Datarails, uncover actionable insights in four simple steps:

1. Gather: Centralize scattered financial and operational data from all your organizational platforms in one place. Bring together data from any ERP, GL, CRM, or any other transactional system, as well as data from spreadsheets of any structure or template.

2. Prepare: Benefit from improved data preparation with automated data transformations including consolidations, FX conversions, eliminations, hierarchies, financial adjustments, and more.

3. Report and Visualize: With a complete set of data and Datarails’ Insights feature, create clear visualizations and reports to help executives see what they need to see within the Datarails visualization tool OR the familiar and powerful environment of Excel.

4. Analyze: Perform advanced investigations into your data including variance, horizontal, and vertical analyses. Slice and dice data, drill down, and perform ad-hoc analyses to discover and provide insights to guide business decisions.   

Complete financial intelligence. Connect all your data, insights, and teams to drive ROI, speed, and growth across your business.

About Datarails

Datarails is developing a business augmented intelligence platform for the corporate finance function. Our FP&A solution allows for the connection and centralization of all organizational financial data from various systems (ERP, GL, CRM) alongside Excel spreadsheets and operational data. It also allows for the creation of automated financial reports (P&L, cash-flow, budgets, etc.), as well as thorough analysis of consolidated data for the creation of business and financial insights.