Search Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) on Google, and you’ll find tales of epic failure outnumber success stories seven to one. If I had a $100 bill for every CFO I have heard complain about his or her frustration with an ERP platform, I’d have a serious bankroll on my hands. Today I thought I’d even the score a little by offering my two cents (since I don’t have that bankroll, unfortunately) – much of this courtesy of Protiviti’s own ERP leaders and experts – on how to make your ERP selection succeed.
The keys, you’ll see, are to address critical areas before selecting and designing your ERP system.
Key 1: Manage Change
I could spend days debating the fine points of SAP versus Oracle and Microsoft. But frankly, that’s their job. Success or failure, more often, depends not on functionality, but on management’s ability to get employees, suppliers and buyers aligned behind the implementation effort. Continue reading
Today, Protiviti released the results of its 2014 Finance Priorities Survey. As the title implies, we conduct this research annually to identify the top challenges and key areas of focus for CFOs and finance executives and professionals as they prepare for the coming year. Major findings from our just-released research include:
– Managing cash flow and working capital efficiently and effectively is key – As many of our respondents commented, “Cash is king.”
– There continues to be a strong focus on streamlining the financial close – From improving account reconciliation and financial consolidation processes to the period-end close, finance functions want to achieve greater efficiency.
– Harnessing business intelligence and “big data” is critical for strategic planning, forecasting, budgeting and profitability analysis – There is a major drive within more organizations to understand in minute detail the performance and profitability of product and service lines, customers, customer segments, and sales channels, thus strengthening executive management’s strategic decision-making regarding investments and resource allocation.
– Changes to U.S. healthcare regulations are having a major impact – This is no surprise given the many questions that remain open for companies related to the Affordable Care Act, from compliance to short- and long-term costs.
– Major and looming changes to U.S. tax laws and business regulations represent significant concerns – These changes will have significant implications on tax planning and forecasting. Continue reading
For those of you who have responsibility for your organization’s IT security, there’s some major news on the standards front. In November, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) will formally release their much-anticipated updates to ISO/IEC 27001 and 27002, both of which are long-recognized standards for information security. The last time these standards were updated was in 2005.
We’ve published a Flash Report that will help companies anticipate the requirements of the new standards and the possible ramifications for organizations. This should serve as a helpful primer to assess the updates in these standards and begin preparations for changes you’ll need to make in your information security policies, practices and processes. Read more here.
I really look forward to football season. Many weekends you’ll find me enjoying both college and pro gridiron games, including those of my beloved Texas Longhorns and Dallas Cowboys. While I wish they were better (I am close to wearing a paper bag over my head!), I still enjoy the camaraderie of the tailgating and game experiences with my family and friends. And I really enjoy a well-played game, no matter who is playing. It’s what many of us live for, right?
Not surprisingly, I’ve observed a number of parallels between successful football teams and corporate ones. The old, shopworn adage that the best offense is a good defense holds true not only in football (and many other sports, for that matter), but also as part of a sound business strategy. But in football there is one thing I have noticed in particular: defense wins championships. Continue reading
As I mentioned in my blog on the 2013-2014 Global Competitiveness Index (GCI), the World Economic Forum (WEF) ranked Switzerland for the fifth consecutive year as the world’s most competitive country. Such consistent success in the face of global economic turmoil is noteworthy, particularly when you consider that the United States was the last country to hold the leadership position.
Switzerland has, for some time, benefited from a positive public image. When most people think of that country, they imagine chocolates, watches, banks or skiing. Even the name is Disneyesque with an air of romanticism about it. The country’s rapid accumulation of wealth in the 20th century is commonly referred to as “The Swiss Miracle.”
In this context, it would be easy to dismiss the country’s latest accolade as hyperbole. But the GCI isn’t a popularity contest. It is based on an objective evaluation of 100 factors in 12 competitive performance categories that ranks 148 countries. And while other countries in the top 10 have fluctuated over the years, Switzerland has remained at or near the top. Continue reading
Managing Director, Protiviti
In May Protiviti was proud to gold sponsor TEDx Midwest 2013 – an independently organized TED gathering of remarkable people who met to skillfully communicate ideas, innovations and issues that affect most everybody. Continue reading