Despite the widespread adoption of ERP systems that were supposed to remove most of the manual effort, only 20% of finance processes are truly automated. Why is that?
It’s the automation gap. That gap around finance and accounting processes means work still needs to be done manually outside of those ERP systems, requiring additional tools or extensive ERP customization.
This results in a compromise – either accept a lower level of finance process automation and fill the gaps with manual work, or incur extra IT effort and cost for custom development and additional tools to try and fill the gaps.
There are three main causes of your finance automation gap:
1. ERP can’t automate all your finance processes
The extra work required outside of your ERP system creates a significant efficiency and automation gap for today’s complex finance and accounting processes.
2. The complexity of finance processes
The complexity of finance processes requires more effort to extract and manipulate data, create workflows for approvals and corrections, put the results back into the ERP and document the outcome and process steps for audit purposes.
3. The failure of RPA and other add-on tools to plug the gap
Integration between your ERP and point solutions or RPA tools isn’t a one-off project – it’s an ongoing challenge. What happens when your ERP is upgraded? Or the add-on solution, for that matter? Will the add-on still work? How much testing and re-training is needed?
About The Author
Shak Akhtar is the Senior Vice President of Finance Automation for Redwood Software. Cutting his teeth as an accountant at IBM before working for leading IT companies such as SAP®, BEA and iTwo, Shak Akhtar combines his abundance of financial and IT experience to fulfill his global responsibilities at Redwood Software. That includes spearheading the adoption of robotic process solutions by enterprises across their back office operations and chairing client led financial transformation workshops.