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With Intelligent Technology, Finance Is More Than Just Black-And-White

2 Jul 2015 by Helen Johnson

When people think of finance, it’s probably a pretty black-and-white world that they imagine: the team that completes the book keeping, pays the vendors, collects from clients, and very importantly, keeps control of the money. Most finance departments do, in fact, perform these functions. But in a fast-paced environment like the one at Insight, the finance team’s role expands well beyond the traditional definition. More than ever, finance is a partner to the ‘front of the house’ functions, hand-in-hand, working together to drive business performance.

Leveraging real-time information to help leaders make business decisions has become central to the role of finance officers in any business. They are tasked with owning and managing accurate information as well as delivering insight about what that means for business operations, sales and other key parts of the organization.

Intelligent technology is a great enabler for finance to add color to business performance and market dynamics. Scalable systems that ensure accuracy of our financial statements are central to the work of finance — but so are tools that enable real-time business analytics that help us continuously identify opportunities for improvement in client experience or company profitability.

I know that a Profit and Loss can provide good data to help our business make smart decisions, but I’m also very interested in telling the story behind the numbers. What does it all mean? What were the core drivers, both positive and negative? What did we learn that we would want to do more — or possibly less — of in the future? Intelligent technology helps finance paint the picture in a way that takes numbers and translates them to understandable actions.

In recent years, the finance team has become a critical part of the management process for Insight. That is due in no small part to the collaborative partnership that finance and the business have built. That relationship has strengthened both areas understanding of the metrics that drive our business — allowing us to be more agile in making decisions for the company. Together, our whole business, including finance, sales, operations, product management and services, are leveraging intelligent technology to become a smarter, more information based business — which will serve us well in creating value for our clients, partners and teammates well into the future.