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Adapting to change: Six must dos for financial planning in disruptive times

This article is written by Yvette Ross, Director of Product Marketing with FinancialForce. Her goal is to help organizations understand the value of the right cloud platform and how it can help organizations run a most intelligent, agile, and connected business. 

In a business environment as uncertain as the current one, organizations must have critical insights across the enterprise so operational plans can be built swiftly, adapted nimbly, and executed successfully.

But there are plenty of elements that can send the planning process off course. Here are six things financial leaders must consider as they think about how to plan smarter and be equipped for whatever comes next.

1. Don’t rely on spreadsheets

They are insecure, lack version controls, and inherently plagued with errors. How can you confidently plan with untrustworthy data? Use a system that automates calculations, eliminates errors.

2. Establish the ‘what ifs’

Use a system that allows you to define different dimensions and dig into the details that matter. Conceive and explore multiple ‘what if’ future scenarios without losing sight or control of the core plan.

3. Focus on processes

Create robust planning and approval workflows to enable timely and effective decision making. Reduce planning risks and ensure compliance by refining and defining your processes.

4. Always think bigger

The market is volatile but growth opportunities are still ripe. Rely on ERP solutions that will future proof your planning for a larger, more complex organization with more customers and transactions.

5. Be prepared for scrutiny

Rely on a system that delivers clear oversight of planning and can track related performance for executive, functional and project leaders. Have confidence in the business outcomes you present.

6. Create cross-functional collaboration

Reduce manual planning processes where Finance has to track down assumptions and verify data input. Look to a unified platform that increases cross company-collaboration and communication.

Making it happen

With continued market volatility making planning more and more complex, only businesses with agile planning and flexible forecasting can quickly adapt to changing conditions and accelerate growth.

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