Keith Mattioli, Principal for Management Consulting at KPMG, and Mark Nittler, Vice President of Enterprise Strategy at Workday, discussed how cloud technology can help finance teams transform their operations during a Thought Leadership Spotlight Presented by Workday & KPMG at the 2014 Chief Financial Officer Leadership Forum in Dallas on Sept. 10. During their presentation, "Enabling Finance Transformation with Cloud Technology: How to Increase Agility, Improve Insights and Empower Users and the Business," the duo discussed how financial departments can leverage the cloud to become "forward-looking" organizations.
Mattioli pointed out many financial departments are using the cloud to become information-based organizations. The cloud enables these departments to store and access data in real-time, Mattioli said, which makes it a valuable technology that could help organizations extend their reach. An organization that fully understands the cloud can optimize it and reap long-lasting rewards from this technology as well, Mattioli said: "As we think about new solutions that are coming to market today, we have a better opportunity to truly transform finance from this transaction-based model to an agile information-based organization that is a true, strategic business partner to the business and is most importantly, forward-looking, not backward-looking."
However, many financial departments currently use complex architectures to manage their businesses, Nittler said. A financial department that looks beyond the general ledger, Nittler added, can leverage the cloud to expand its business: "We have to think beyond the general ledger. Replacing general ledger will not get this done. We have to think higher and we have to think longer. Thinking higher means thinking beyond the accounting picture."