Finance Innovation and Excellence Part II

This four part series covers the 8 key themes at the 4th annual Finance Innovation and Excellence Summit (FInEx Summit). The Summit tackled eight of today’s most pressing challenges facing Chief Financial Officers and other accounting, finance and treasury leaders. The expert speakers on each panel are global leaders in their field who deliver great messages tailored to the worldwide CFO community.

Part II covers Maximize the ROI of Your Digital Journey and Integrated Business Planning.

Maximize the ROI of your Digital Journey


In this FInEx Summit panel, Steve welcomes speakers Raghavendra Reddy, Co-Founder, bluecopa; Christopher Argent, Founder of the GENCFO Community; and Andrew Codd CGMA MBA, President of AVF Worldwide, to discuss how finance leaders can maximize the return on investment (ROI) of their digital transformation journey.

The conversation highlights the need for a mindset shift in prioritizing outcomes over the focus on tools and technology. The guests emphasize that measuring ROI can be challenging, but behavior change and investment in solutions that will be used are key.

They address the importance of prioritizing technology in finance and the tendency for CFOs to overlook it. They suggest that CFOs should not delegate technology to someone with limited tech knowledge and emphasize the need for understanding technology in the context of company value.

The panelists also discuss the merging of data science and finance analyst skillsets, with a growing focus on data-driven decision-making. They highlight the need for CFOs to drive transformation within their teams and organizations, emphasizing the importance of change management and winning hearts and minds.

The conversation touches on the challenges of breaking established ways of working and habits within finance teams and suggests raising success stories and use cases to challenge existing roles and identities.

The panelists share their experiences, including the accidental journey into their current roles and the budget constraints they faced as CFOs. They also discuss hiring practices, suggesting locations like India and the Philippines for technical talent with good communication skills.

Overall, the panel provides essential insights into the importance of ROI, behavior change, technology integration, and the role of finance leaders in driving digital transformation for their organizations.

“Digital transformation is not just about the tools and technology, it’s about the outcomes and the people involved.”

— Raghavendra Reddy

Here is the link to full video presentation, Maximizing the ROI of Your Digital Journey

Integrated Business Planning


In this session hosted by Zeeshan Umer, the discussion revolves around the concept and implementation of Integrated Business Planning (IBP). The panel includes Thomas Marinko, Head of International Business Development at Hypergene, and Tariq Munir, Supply Chain Finance Manager at PepsiCo Australia, New Zealand.

The panelists start by highlighting the various names used to refer to the process, including IBP, xP&A and Connected Planning. They emphasize that IBP goes beyond sales and operational planning and encompasses functions such as strategy, production planning, supply planning, inventory logistics, demand management, and brand management. Integrating these functions into one business or financial plan allows for strategic alignment and a shared vision within the organization.

The panelists stress the importance of data quality and automation in successful IBP implementation. Many companies still struggle with business planning despite having data, often relying on outdated spreadsheet models that need updating and integration. Building too much granular logic may hamper adaptability, and the right standards for tech and process requirements should be set.

They also highlight the need for a cultural shift and mindset change within organizations to embrace IBP fully. Leadership teams must be aligned with the process, making it routine across the organization. Data becomes a crucial factor, and having a single source of truth is vital for effective decision-making.

The panelists discuss the benefits of IBP, including improved planning efficiency, risk identification, scenario planning, strategic alignment, predictive analytics, and cross-functional collaboration. They emphasize the importance of starting with simple process automation before considering advanced technologies like AI and predictive analytics.

Overall, the panel points out that IBP is a powerful way to run a business and achieve a comprehensive and integrated planning process. When implemented correctly, it can bridge the gap between long-term strategy and current-year plans, leading to improved business outcomes.

“IBP is not just a process. It is actually a mindset change. It’s a cultural shift of how you make your business decisions, how you manage your business planning.”

— Tariq Munir

Here is the link to full video presentation, Integrated Business Planning

Part III of our series will be here November 6th, Finance Innovation and Excellence Part III

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