Historically, finance teams have devoted the bulk of their time and attention to ‘the basics’ — their traditional transaction processing and bookkeeping roles – and less time to the more strategic, value-adding finance activities. Finance activities can broadly be classified into three groups.
The first group of activities are finance operations. These are the most basic finance processes usually comprised of recording transactions; essentially getting the debits and credits right at the most basic level. The 2013 KPMG’s Global CFO Research estimates that most finance functions spend 50% of their time performing such activities. A majority of these activities can be automated as they require little judgement or are deterministic.
The second group of activities are aimed at financial reporting and control. These are activities that focus on weekly, monthly, annual or other regular reporting as well as activities aimed at managing or monitoring financial resources such as financial reconciliations of assets such as cash or fixed assets. It is estimated that most finance functions spend 30% of their time performing such activities.
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