The Modern Finance Experience – Setting the Stage for Modern Business Success
May 1, 2017 - By: SC&H Group
SC&H Group’s Oracle-Hyperion EPM, ERP, and BI Experts took the stage at Oracle’s Modern Finance Experience to help C-suite executives better understand how to navigate the ever-changing digital financial landscape. The team honed in on some of our more recent cloud-based Oracle EPM implementations and how we successfully conquered unique client challenges with collaborative discussions and targeted strategies.
The three-day event kicked off with Oracle CEO Mark Hurd’s Keynote Address, which focused on the need for CEO’s to have an immediate impact at the beginning of their tenures. Hurd advocated for pairing their agility with their comfortability with pivoting in the face of market disruptions – a key intersection point the Finance suite needs to be prepared to navigate – for maximum success.
A recent study conducted by Oracle and the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA), “Agile Finance Revealed: The New Operating Model for Modern Finance,” notes the shift to enhanced agile finance departments. This shift has led to an increase in profitability and an increase in revenues, aligning with the support required from the CEO’s perspective. Additionally, the report’s research includes insights around the shift to the cloud – an area that SC&H Group was able to contribute experience and expertise during our conference presentations.
Kevin Hebbel (SC&H Group) and Al Marciante (Oracle) led a joint discussion on the first-ever live Oracle Financial Consolidation and Close Cloud Service (FCCS) implementation. Our client was challenged with increased reporting demands within a manual and inefficient close process. They were not alone in this problem, as Hebbel noted:
- 86% of companies use Excel or Email to track the financial close
- More than 70% of companies have 5+ reporting standards, which can lead to inefficiencies
- 75% of finance managers believe their financial close processes are ineffective
Hebbel walked the audience through the end-to-end solution that reduced the dependency on Excel as the primary data collection and reporting tool, while increasing speed and confidence in the results. These benefits were created by implementing an enterprise software solution to address the entire extended financial close. This strategic decision to transform their finance initiatives allowed the company to move from a 12-day close process to a 6-day close process.
In building upon the theme of unique Oracle deployments, SC&H’s own Luke Sinnen presented with Brian Hargreaves from Hilton. Their presentation discussed how the largest deployment of an Oracle EPM Cloud solution empowered Hilton to leverage the cloud to improve reporting and gain new insights and greater forecast accuracy in their planning and forecasting processes. Sinnen and Hargreaves highlighted how modern planning in the cloud connects strategy with execution and gives business owners in HR, sales, finance, and other business industries full autonomy to synchronize planning processes across the enterprise.
Hilton shared a long list of benefits from their conversion to Oracle Planning and Budgeting Cloud Service, and a few that stood out were:
- Improved forecasting accuracy
- Intuitive, easy to use, and scalable solution
- More time to focus more on data analysis and trends for enhanced decision making
The Modern Finance Experience ended on the note of recognizing and awarding Change Agents within the Finance realm. Every company has a finance organization, but not every team has a change agent dedicated to taking their organization to the next level. We would like to congratulate everyone who received an award but specifically would like to highlight the following awards for which our client, Hilton, was recognized:
- Roll With It Award which recognized significant increase in agility using the rolling forecast capability in the Oracle EPM Cloud best-in-class service delivery — Kristen Stampe,Vice President Finance Operations, Hilton
- Frugal Finance Award which recognized dramatic cost savings using Oracle ERP and EPM solutions — Renee Thomas, Senior Director, Technology and Planning for Finance Operations, Hilton
There were many takeaways to consider from The Modern Finance Experience. However, a key theme remained throughout – in today’s high paced business environment, organizations are seeking tools that set them up to outpace the competition. Without making a strategic transition through utilization of the cloud and data analytics, organizations risk their relevance in the extremely competitive market we work in today.
To gain more insights into SC&H Group’s Oracle-Hyperion EPM, ERP, and BI Consulting practice, please click here. If you’re looking to follow in Thayer Lodging or Hilton’s footsteps and make a seamless transition, please reach out to us today.