How a Financial Planning & Analysis Solution Can Impact Your Business

About a year ago, a survey of finance officers found that a financial planning & analysis (FP&A) solution was at the top of their list of key finance processes. It beat strategic planning, profitability reporting, internal controls and closing the books on the priority scale.

Financial Planning analysis - FP&A Solutions

That’s no surprise to us. In fact, at MCA Connect we believe top financial business executives’ interest in FP&A solutions are still strong and likely to increase in 2020.

Why? The reason is that the ability for CFOs to rapidly forecast short and longer-term shifts in their companies has become paramount. Waiting months, or even weeks, to identify and act upon threats and/or opportunities could be asking for trouble.

Consider this: a company that has a month or more of lead time because its FP&A solution is integrated with its enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, which together can show that customers will be increasing orders for a specific product, is a company with a distinct advantage. It has the built-in intelligence to quickly respond and manufacture and distribute that product effectively. By contrast, a CFO with real-time early warnings of softening customer demand can tighten spending across the company – long before the competition has reined in their spending.

The need for an effective FP&A solution – and finance people who are masters at using it – is clear. So is dramatically reducing the amount of manual effort that finance and other departments make to prepare budgets and forecasts. Companies that automate most of this work and use real-time insights and unified forecasts to detect changes outside and inside their company, gain a big advantage. They use effective FP&A solutions that integrate with systems which enables agile budgeting and forecasting. That, in turn, gives them the ability to reallocate assets dynamically in the areas of the business that need it most, and the least.

Planning and forecasting budgets and financial projects can become complicated by lack of flexible systems, low financial planning and analysis talent, or poor data processing and reporting. These processes are critical to your success and how they are maintained and monitored can deeply impact your bottom line.

With the right FP&A solution in place, businesses can easily and successfully manage financial projects from beginning to end, resulting in a shorter budget cycle. At MCA Connect, we’ve developed an FP&A solution to help businesses easily build their own forecasts, budgets and reports at both the operational and financial level – without the need for the IT department to get involved. Built in one consolidated data warehouse, our FP&A solution offers easy reporting and dashboards through Power BI. While, yes, we are slightly biased towards our FP&A solution (for good reason), there are many solutions out there that provide a positive impact for businesses. If you’d like to learn more or talk about how you can implement an FP&A solution into your business, contact us. Our experts would be happy to talk.

Author: David Bence, Director, Business Analytics

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