For CFOs, managing liquidity can often feel like a tightrope act: Having too little cash on hand might cost you an opportunity. But having too much can rob you of higher yields from long-term investments. Now finance leaders are staring down a radically different cash management landscape, in the wake of new regulations. Elsewhere, the IRS is making nice with small businesses that had their assets seized on slim suspicions. And IT spending will inch up just 2% this year, which means CFOs overseeing those budgets will have to flex some creativity to meet expanding needs. Continue reading
Building the right finance team is one of the CFO’s top challenges. Nearly three quarters of respondents to the Adaptive Insights “CFO Indicator Q1 2016: Big Data, Better Vision: The Agile CFO” survey said the biggest impact on their future role will come from talent management and skills shortages. Many of the newcomers to finance will come from the millennial generation. It’s therefore incumbent upon senior finance executives to learn how to attract and best manage this younger workforce.
Ajit Kambil, global research director at Deloitte’s CFO Program says one of the big challenges CFOs face is how to develop people and get the right talent in the right seat. The other is how to create a well-functioning team. “CFOs have to deal with the diversity of the workforce, which includes generational diversity,” Kambil said. “Millennials have a very different mindset.” Thus CFOs need to develop a new thinking about their career paths and consider how to motivate the new generation to keep the best performers engaged and loyal. Continue reading
Good news for those dismayed by the dismal data in the recent jobs report: U.S. retail sales climbed in May, the second month in a row. Healthy consumer spending could signal that the U.S. economy remains sure-footed. Elsewhere, more companies are moving their HQs to urban centers in a bid to attract millennial workers unwilling to commute to the ’burbs. And fears of a possible Brexit intensify as the vote looms large. Continue reading
Excel is like a lot of useful but familiar tools—use it long enough and it becomes a habit. You take the well-worn path of actions and approaches to get the job done, even if they are not necessarily the fastest and most effective ways to get the best results.
Mastering Excel is key to gaining what every finance professional needs to succeed: More time. By working faster and more efficiently in Excel, you can free up extra time to support the strategic priorities of your organization. And that could help you move up the corporate ladder.
“It is sometimes hard to change, particularly for someone whose work life is built around spreadsheets,” says Mark Kawakami, a certified Microsoft Excel Expert who has mastered a wide range of Excel workarounds and hacks, which he shared in a recent webinar. “These ideas offer a chance to grease skids a bit and find some simple shortcuts to getting the job done faster and more efficiently.” Continue reading
It’s always a good idea to closely watch the pioneers in our industries. What typically emerges is an unshakable desire to change the status quo. The winners of the annual Adaptive Torchie Awards are such innovators. These forward-thinking businesses have used Adaptive Insights to strategically transform financial planning and analytics and better position their organizations for success. Continue reading
Wage growth is picking up. The pace of job openings hit a new record in March. Initial jobless claims have remained low. All good signs for the U.S. economy, right? Not so fast. When the Labor Department released its latest jobs report on Friday, it left financial executives and economists scratching their heads. The grim numbers also sparked trepidation at the Federal Reserve, though chair Janet Yellen cautioned against being too reactive to any one metric. “Although this recent labor market report was, on balance, concerning, let me emphasize that one should never attach too much significance to any single monthly report,” she said. Continue reading
We recently received the great news that Adaptive Insights was named a Leader in the 2016 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Strategic Corporate Performance Management (SCPM) Solutions report. Even more exciting, we are now the first and only cloud corporate performance management (CPM) solutions vendor to ever ascend to Gartner’s Leader Quadrant for SCPM.
This is a big step forward for Adaptive Insights and a giant leap for our industry, as well as the scores of FP&A professionals seeking to make more strategic contributions to their organizations.
It also affirms that the cloud has unequivocally gone mainstream in the CPM space, with rapidly increasing adoption and acceptance of CPM technology that improves how FP&A does business and drives strategic value. Continue reading
Salaries are swelling slightly across the corporate finance ranks. But don’t assume bigger paychecks are enough to drive top job performance. Nearly half of finance pros report that so-so business skills, including leadership and strategic planning, are holding them back at work. And a separate survey by Robert Half Finance & Accounting found that 93% of employees in accounting and finance are eager to talk to their managers about their career paths and how to fill skills gaps. It’s time to ask: Could leadership training be as valuable as an annual bonus? Continue reading
Revenue. Profit. Head count. Market share. There’s no shortage of metrics that speak to a company’s health and growth. And certainly the corporate landscape is flush with entrepreneurs doggedly pursuing the metric they feel matters most. But in the race to measure and maximize our internal KPIs, are we at risk of not paying enough attention to the most important metric of all: the value a company brings to its customers?
Chairman Rob Hull founded Adaptive Insights more than a decade ago, determined to build a solution that would allow CFOs to look at the inner workings and performance metrics across all business departments. He wanted to help companies grow their businesses by enabling their finance teams to better collaborate around business data. But when Rob approached venture capitalists with this novel idea, he heard a parade of “no”s. In fact, more than 70 VCs turned him down during an early round before he secured funding. Someone merely bit by the entrepreneurial bug—someone who wanted to grow a business, no matter the purpose—would have listened to those naysayers and pivoted. But as a CFO himself, Rob knew the value a cloud-based CPM (corporate performance management) planning tool could bring to finance leaders. So he held fast to his idea in order to secure the necessary funding. Continue reading
You’ve been down this road before. The road where finance relies on Excel to travel into uncharted territory. The road where Excel’s usefulness as a data tool is mistaken for competence in planning and analysis. Plenty of finance departments demand of Excel more than it can handle. They’re simply not aware of its limitations or the alternatives, even though Excel, despite its reliability as a data aggregator, has shown time and again that it is error-prone and fragile as a planning system.
Look at your fuel gauge: Do you spend too much of your day tracking down and cross-checking data? Does your executive team argue over data authenticity or which piece of data is the single source of truth? Are you bogged down in the grunt work of data curation when your company (and your sanity) demands more big-picture analysis? If so, it’s time to embark on a new journey—one that not only affords you the familiarity of, but also complements, Excel. One with a user-friendly planning and analysis system that moves finance into the strategic role every high-performing organization needs. Continue reading