Robert Kugel's Analyst Perspectives

Finance Analytics Innovation

Posted by Robert Kugel on Jul 21, 2011 8:48:08 AM

Our recently completed benchmark research on how finance departments use analytics makes clear that while they have a distinct competence in this area and execute the basics well, a majority of companies are immature in their use of advanced finance analytics. Regardless of industry or geography, few finance departments use predictive analytics or delve into important areas such as strategic profitability management. This is of note because these undertakings are no longer difficult to pursue: With the growing availability of in-memory processing and the improved ability to work with large data sets, information technology now makes it possible for finance departments to embrace these to enhance the effectiveness with which they execute core functions.   

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Topics: Predictive Analytics, Finance Analytics, receivables, Analytics, Business Analytics, Business Performance Management (BPM), CFO, Financial Performance Management (FPM), payables

IFRS for the U.S.? Yes – But When and How Are Still Iffy

Posted by Robert Kugel on Jul 18, 2011 12:01:37 PM

Hans Hoogervorst, who just succeeded Sir David Tweedie as the chairman of the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), recently said he is “optimistic the SEC will move to fully incorporate IFRS [International Financial Reporting Standards] shortly.” I find it hard to see why, unless one has a fairly elastic definition of “fully,” “incorporate” and “shortly” (or at least two out of three). Then again, one shouldn’t fault the head of an organization for expressing undue optimism since that’s what he or she is supposed to do. 

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Topics: Reporting, Consolidation, FASB, IASB, IFRS, principles-based, rules-based, Business Analytics, Business Collaboration, Accounting, Business Performance Management (BPM), Financial Performance Management (FPM), GAAP, SEC

Analytics Can Make Finance More Relevant

Posted by Robert Kugel on Jul 7, 2011 11:22:17 AM

Ventana Research recently completed groundbreaking benchmark research on how finance organizations use analytics these days. Of course, analytics have been a mainstay of finance organizations since people started using accounting ratios to assess the health and performance of a business. Yet perhaps because traditional analytics are so deeply entrenched, finance departments execute the basics well but don’t take the next step to fully utilize the power of information technology to use analytics more effectively. And they should: Our research finds that a majority of executives and managers outside the finance organization want the department to play a more strategic role in their company’s management.  

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Topics: Predictive Analytics, SAP, SAS, Operational Performance Management (OPM), strategic profitability, Analytics, Business Intelligence, IBM, Oracle, Business Performance Management (BPM), Cognos, finance, Financial Performance Management (FPM), Sales Performance Management (SPM), Financial Performance Management

Taxes on Internet Sales Would Drive Software Adoption

Posted by Robert Kugel on Jul 1, 2011 12:32:42 PM

Many companies have automated their sales and use tax processes to cut the effort required to execute them and to reduce the number of errors and their cost in dealing with a fiendishly complex set of rules and rates. This is one step in bringing tax into the mainstream of finance, which we advocate. Most people are familiar with sales tax; a “use tax” is a form of excise tax assessed on otherwise tax-free goods purchased by a resident of the assessing state regardless of where it was purchased. The use-tax rate is usually the same as the sales tax rate that would have been applied to an in-state purchase and is designed to serve the same purpose of generating revenue.

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Topics: Sales, Tax, tax performance management, use tax, Business Performance Management (BPM), Financial Performance Management (FPM)