Optimising financial processes

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Something to Consider: Finance Fails to get Full Value from Shared Services

Something to Consider August 2019 4

Finance Fails to Get Full Value From Shared Services

You might think that the relationship between Shared Services and Finance should be a “no brainer”. However, according to a Gartner survey, there are significant barriers thwarting this partnership in more than half of organisations.

According to a recent Deloitte survey, 68% of participating companies said they realize an average annual productivity boost of at least 5% from their shared service centers. For 28% of the respondents, the productivity premium is at least 10%; and it’s 15% or more for about one in eight of the companies.

So what is holding the other half of companies back from driving these relationships to realise greater value?

A lot of those surveyed in finance were simply indifferent about what value shared services could add.

It seems that Change Management may be an issue. The “most powerful” objections to shared services, reported by 58% of survey participants, relate to loss — of jobs, information, and finance departmental control over key processes. We know that in managing change, we don’t fear change itself, but the perceived loss associated.

We need to raise our game in working as partners in Finance and Shared Services (and other functions too!).

Otherwise, we risk missing out on delivering the broader business value, beyond cost cutting, of shared services. Deeper Business Partnering skills are just one of the key capabilities that need developing.

You can find both surveys, results and comments here.

Our ‘Something To Consider’ snippets are framed as small, digestible, ‘dashes of insight’ around the pillars of what we define as “World Class Finance” – Process Optimization, Financial Control and Compliance, and Risk Assurance, all underpinned by technology enablement and integration.