With Finance moving towards becoming a more data-driven function, organisations are increasingly looking to derive more prescriptive insights rather than descriptive insights from their data. Its important that finance equips itself with the right tools, skills and capabilities to address critical questions with newfound speed, accuracy and effectiveness.
Of these areas, KPMG has identified investments in finance analytics technology tools as one of the main areas of focus for financial services organisations. These technology tools are spread across five distinct layers which include:
Provides visualisations that integrate with various tools. This enables users to obtain pre-defined reports, secure access to dynamic visuals to communicate business performance, and ability to develop customised visualisations.
Helps finance users to perform complex modelling (e.g. scenario modelling and primary predictive analytics) prior to visualisation without programming or scriptting knowledge.
Provides data exploration and modelling tools, pre-trained algorithms, artificial intelligenceand data science platforms to support enhanced analysis on data for both predictive and prescriptive requirements.
ETL (Extract, Transform, Load)
Allows flexible interfaces to extract data from sources, transformation to cleanse and structure data and data management, governance and integration.
Offers organisations with an ecosystem of applications, services and data via multiple integration points. It enables scalable, expandable and almost perfectly elastic software servicesthrough solutions like infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS) and software as a service (SaaS).
It is crucial to conduct a thorough market analysis to evaluate the suitability of vendor tools across the five technology layers; identify the ‘best of breed’ and market-leading solutions and determine the tools that best fit your organisation’s needs. The key criteria for this analysis should include the tools capability to support:
Inside-out requirement categories
Once the shortlist of tools has been agreed based on the market scan, its important to overlay your specific business needs along with your current base of deployed solutions across these technology layers. Criteria and weightages for each of these tools may vary for various organisations based on how you want to deploy these.
Vendor solution evaluation
To ensure that the vendor solution addresses your requirements holistically, organisations should also conduct proof of concept/hackathons to compare vendor offerings and make a more informed decision before committing to any long-term contracts.
KPMG has performed market scan and vendor selection for several clients based on their specific organisational requirements. Some of the key findings from our experiences of market scan/vendor selection are: