The CFO’s constant struggle with outdated technology and complex environments


CFOs in businesses of all types and sizes suffer similar challenges which hinder them from working optimally, which in turn holds the business back from moving forward. Most of these challenges stem from technology, either the incorrect use thereof, the patchy fixes over time, or the lack of maintenance. Sometimes, they simply don’t have the right technology ‘fit’ for their business. Explore the top 3 concerns for CFOs when choosing tech >>

Since month-end reporting is such a pivotal part of the role of the CFO and the further development of the company, we work side by side with them to develop solutions to the issues that arise from dealing with outdated technology and overly complex environments.


Technology challenges facing the modern CFO

Many businesses are still using outdated versions of Windows (such as 2007 or 2010) because their SAP software’s Excel plug in hasn’t been updated recently. They are literally stuck in the past because if they update their system, their SAP software will cease work. Why your expensive finance software might not be worth the hefty price tag >>

We also see businesses using old ERP systems because the back end was custom developed at great expense at some point, or they truly believe that how they currently work is better because they have ‘always done things this way’. There is also an unwavering belief that the cost of change will be far higher than the perceived return on investment of moving to a new system.

Finally, and possibly the most risky, is when there is a complex web of workbooks used for pulling month end reports that often only one person understands well enough. This heavy dependency on one person is extremely risky and can cause inaccuracies, which in turn wastes valuable time.


How do you solve these problems and improve business reporting at the same time?

Remove your reporting from the traditional systems, do it independently using tools like Power BI or Excel’s Powerpivot and Power Query. This circumnavigates issues that come from software plugins and if you need to change your reporting structure you can do it much quicker and with ease. Is Excel really all you need for complex data analysis? >>

If you change your ERP system you simply change underlying queries so that it pulls data that matches the historical system, making for a quicker transition with almost zero downtime when moving reporting from one system to another. You will also not need to undergo the costly process of having all your reports rewritten for a completely new system.

An advantage of having a reporting system outside of your software is that you have the ability to change much quicker. Not only will you get the reports that you wanted, but in the tool that you needed it (Excel), without interrupting the system.

If you are changing your business to work around outdated technology, then you need to consider that it might not be the right fit for your organisation. Is your business struggling with these issues? Contact e-magination Infosolutions to help improve your business’s reporting processes.