Success Factors for Finance Transformation 

Finance transformation is no longer an option, it is vital to ensure finance teams shift from number crunching to adding real value to the business through business partnering & strategic support, data & analytical capabilities & serving as business advisors.

The impact of COVID over the last 3 years has taught us the necessity to be agile & respond quickly to expected, & more importantly, unexpected changes in the business & the external environment are critical.

I have had the opportunity to work on a large number of finance transformation projects including Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) & revenue system implementation, scoping & roll out of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) & data science & analytical tools. In this article, I will give insights into what I believe are the success factors for finance transformation to aid those in the process of automation or looking to embark on their journey of transformation!

In a recent article she wrote for DCU Catherine Drysdale FCA, Consultant with Barden’s Technology Practice, highlighted some of the key elements of finance transformation including:

  1. Leadership – They set the vision & agenda for transformation, create an environment of accountability & make decisions for the good of the organisation as a whole.
  2. People / ResourcesIdentify & centralise the Transformation team to ensure they can work standalone on the transformation programme.
  3. Implementation partnerdependent on scale of the project, you may need to engage with an implementation partner. Key in selecting is to ensure they are compatible culturally with your organisation & will partner with each function to achieve success.
  4. Identify Technologies – Identifying what technologies will provide the solution to meet the transformation objective is critical for success. Often it’s not a “one size fits all”, a hybrid of solutions may be required to achieve optimisation.
  5. Scalability – Do not underestimate the future potential and synergies from automation.
  6. Quick wins – Early on in a project “quick wins” are important to gain momentum from all parties.
  7. Change Management– fundamental element to ensure success of any transformation. It will go on long after implementation has occurred & should align to a culture & ethos of continuous improvement.

And finally celebrate the successes!! The journey to transformation can take time, so celebrating each milestone is important to keep momentum & engagement across the organisation.


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