By Jim Wong, CPA | July 6, 2016

“Hope is not a business strategy.” –Anonymous

It’s no surprise that we keep discussing how important it is for the finance function to work closely with the technology division of a business. Technological advances continue to get immersed into enterprise-wide operations, and as finance managers and leaders adjust to managing the business strategy as a whole, they must work diligently to not only understand the importance of investing in these technologies—but embrace the results of their decisions.

In fact, the finance managers and leaders who are progressive enough to digest the value that new technologies and systems bring are able to analyze and measure the subsequent return on investment in a more clear and concise manner.

The big picture this wealth of data and information provides is changing the corporate world at a rapid pace, and it’s crucial for the finance and technology functions to continue building a stronger connection.

I recently came across a e-book that discusses strategic ways for finance managers and leaders to make wiser business decisions, better technology investments and analyze the results of their data in order to maximize ROI. I’ve broken down the e-book into the 3 Ways Finance Can Maximize Tech ROI below.

1. Realize technology’s impact on the business. 
As technology evolves and continues to get more and more sophisticated, finance managers and leaders are forced to refine their understanding of this impact. By integrating technology across all facets of the business, the finance function can then collaborate with technology leaders who may not have knowledge of all business strategies to ensure proper implementation of these advancements. This strong connection can positively transform an infrastructure resulting in finance managers and leaders better tracking relevant business efforts.

2. Be transparent and go beyond basic metrics.
The technology function is becoming more complex for businesses as it infiltrates its way into more and more of the operations. Additionally, the highly-competitive digital space is disrupting many business models. Therefore, it’s imperative that the right questions are being asked—and answered. That’s why it’s beneficial for the finance and technology functions to communicate their expertise to each other, move beyond macro-level benchmarks of the past, and invest in tools that will effectively analyze the results of new software and technologies.

3. Build data-driven business intelligence.
Businesses need to leverage its data in order to ascertain important business insight. That takes proper planning. With the onslaught of avenues that data is acquired—whether that be from legacy, the cloud, finance systems, the digital space or other places—finance managers and leaders have to build a comprehensive story as to the results of this information. Being able to decipher, analyze, control, and ultimately report on such data takes patience and a plan. By organizing this data with the proper tools and resources in order to identify and analyze the relevant outcomes, they should see important business intelligence surface as a result.

What are some other ways the finance function can help maximize the return on investment from technology? Comment below and let us know!

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