Without question, the Chief Financial Officer role is one of many critical responsibilities. On any given day, the CFO is tasked with everything from holding budget meetings to evaluating investment risk to financial planning and, of course, managing staff. What’s more, everything they do will center around a host of strategic business goals, including growth and cost management. Above all else, CFOs must be agile and capable of reacting quickly to the changing world around them. Technology – namely robotic process automation – is now paving the way for making the lives of these professionals a little bit easier.
Quick and Efficient Budget Approval
Budget issues are a necessary evil for any CFO, complete with endless proposals, forecasts and scenarios. Gaining executive buy-in and approval can sometimes feel like a never-ending uphill battle. One significant way that robotic process automation can benefit a busy CFO is by providing quick, straightforward and quantifiable ROI. Faster approval means more timely implementation and widespread business process improvement across the entire enterprise.
Dealing with Mergers and Acquisitions
Taking on the additional workload that comes along with facilitating mergers and acquisitions – on top of the present enterprise operations, and while remaining on budget – is often listed as one of the most difficult tasks finance executives must deal with. Adopting new policies, incorporating existing systems and modifying procedures across the board is equally challenging. Robotic process automation is the ideal tool for these situations because it offers end-to-end automation with seamless integration for a more uniform infrastructure and with little to no disruption in current operations.
Error-Free Revenue Growth
Many accounting functions still depend heavily on manual labor, which means that they’re also prone to a good deal of human error. Add to this the increased reliance on outsourced labor and the language and cultural differences that come along with it, and you’ve got a recipe for potential disaster. Keeping up with operations and putting out fires is a huge time waste – time that could be better spent focusing on growth and increased revenue streams. RPA provides an army of software robots available 24/7 to produce fast, efficient and error-free work.
Government regulations as they apply to corporate finance are changing and evolving at an almost mind boggling rate. This becomes even more of a challenge for firms that operate in multiple states or countries, as many of these laws and regulations vary based on location. Part of the CFOs role is to ensure ongoing compliance with any and all governance, which requires a great deal of knowledge and constant updating of information. Using RPA, those in charge can be confident that processes are carried out in accordance with policy, thereby relieving some of the burden.
Despite what you may have heard, robots are not going to replace human workers – at least not for the foreseeable future. This means that the CFOs of today and tomorrow will still be tasked with overseeing employees to ensure optimum efficiency and productivity at the lowest operational costs possible for the organization. Once the repetitive, rules-based manual tasks are shifted to RPA, the human workers can focus on more important mission-critical projects. And because RPA produces fast, error-free work, costs will be optimized as well, leading to an even more favorable bottom line.
When it comes to the Finance and Accounting (F&A) realm, technology has always been an essential driver of success. For this reason, it’s not surprising that many CFOs are now turning to robotic process automation as a tool to make their organizations run more efficiently (and subsequently make their lives a little bit easier).