Having a personal assistant that has the answer to everything and that is available any time of the day to answer any question you can think of has produced some insightful, funny, and wacky results.
For example, who would have thought that if you Googled “Who would win in a fight between…” one of the top results would be “a grilled cheese and a taco?” But apparently there are thousands of people every month who are curious about this epic food showdown.
The world of FP&A is no different. Some people want to know what these letters even stand for, others want to learn about FP&A salaries, and many are looking for detailed answers about financial terms and best practices.
Let’s take a look at the 4 categories of insightful, surprising, and sometimes humorous most Googled FP&A questions as explained by FP&A experts Annette DeYoung (FP&A Solutions Consultant at Datarails) and Christian Wattig (former finance leader at Procter and Gamble and Unilever, and founder of FP&A Bootcamp).
Card #1: FP&A Most Googled Questions Starting with “What is…?”
These 5 most Googled questions mostly deal with the FP&A basics as is expected of questions that start with the words “what is”. DeYoung and Wattig go over the basics, but add a twist of personal tips and humor from their many years of finance experience.
1) What is Excel used for in financial analysis?
2) What is the difference between accounting and FP&A?
3) What is a good Excel model?
4) What is a budget?
5) What is a good FP&A vs. a bad FP&A?
Card #2: FP&A Most Googled Questions Starting with “Is FP&A…?”
1) Is FP&A Better than Accounting?
2) Is FP&A Corporate Finance?
3) Is FP&A different in a big company versus a small company?
4) Is FP&A a Good Career?
5) Is FP&A a great way to earn lots of money?
Interestingly enough almost all of the FP&A Google searches that started with the words “Is FP&A…?” were career focused. DeYoung and Wattig take us through what it’s like to have decades of finance experience in many different roles across all types of organizations big and small. Most importantly they add some career tips and tricks for those starting their careers that they wish they knew when they started.
Card #3: FP&A Most Googled Questions Starting with “What does…?”
These questions cover a large variety of topics including back to the basics (What does FP&A stand for?), career questions (What does compensation look like in FP&A?), and head-scratching, funny questions (What does FP mean on a license plate?).
Card #4: General FP&A Most Googled Questions
1) Which is better industry FP&A versus Big 4 FP&A?
2) Will automation affect FP&A?
3) How do you become an FP&A analyst?
4) What are the pros and cons of an FP&A role?
5) What happens if you make a mistake in FP&A?
As expected of the overall most Googled FP&A questions that don’t start with a particular word, there are questions that cover all sorts of topics. DeYoung and Wattig address automation and how that concerns everyone in finance no matter what level of experience they have. They also address the pros and cons of being an FP&A analyst, how to start a career in FP&A, and their individual ways of addressing something that happens to everyone in FP&A –mistakes.