The cover story in November’s CFO magazine offers a smart overview of the new reality for financial executives to effectively manage business processes in a time when even lean departments are being forced to cut back. The article, “The Incredible Shrinking Finance Department”, by Alix Stuart, talks about a transition that Dolphin is seeing in our work—from manual process management to automated and optimized strategic management of cash flow in key business processes like accounts payable, accounts receivable and order management. Stuart writes:
“That means, Janssen says, that the so-called war for finance talent has shifted in emphasis, from hiring “25 or 50 clerical staff” who can address basic tasks to looking for “a very small number of people” who are analytically minded and who can work with colleagues in lower-cost locations around the globe.”At Dolphin, we’ve been advancing a platform that enables this kind of optimized approach to accounts payable, accounts receivable, sales order management and other business processes for users of SAP solutions. The approach integrates process tracking, executive dashboards for process visibilityand services like dynamic discounting for AP and vendor portals that facilitate both process improvement and cash flow management. And like some of the examples Stuart cites, we’ve seen many of our clients choose to work with us to fix processes and reap the benefits, rather than outsource offshore. The key, in our view, is to make sure that your process is streamlined and your system delivers the kind of actionable insight that moves your organization from a cost center to a strategic asset to the organization. What do you think? If you’re using SAP, what is your goal for your financial business processes?