‘Data Deficit’ is a CFO’s Enemy

Epicor survey sample shows CFOs that rely on empirical data for decision making as opposed to instinct had greater profits, with 72% experiencing a profit increase

Over 46 percent of CFOs rely on “gut-feel” and instinct to make business decisions in lieu of fast access to accurate internal data, a practice that can delay decision making, introduce errors, and erode profitability.

These are just a few negative outcomes stemming from the data deficit challenges CFOs face, according to new research based on a global survey* of over 1,500 financial decision makers announced today by Epicor Software Corporation.

The research reveals that an inability to access the right financial information is having a direct impact on business performance and CFOs’ reputations. Of those polled, 45 percent say poor data hampers timely decision making, and inaccurate information is the main cause of organizational mistakes. CFOs in the manufacturing/engineering sector were the most likely to have a basic/legacy financial IT infrastructure and a high necessity to rely on instinct for decision making.

Survey results demonstrate that a lack of financial information was also shown to negatively affect corporate profitability. The more the CFO relies on empirical data for decision making, the greater the chances of higher profitability. Nearly half of all CFOs (46%) said “increasing profits” was their top business objective in 2015.

Today’s business realities necessitate fast action and systems to support effective decision making. Old monolithic business systems are ill prepared to deliver the responsiveness that businesses need to succeed; mobile, social, analytics and many other technological innovations can assist organizations in this area,” said Malcolm Fox, vice president, product marketing financial management and services industry solutions, Epicor Software. “Job stress is generally considered a key factor in CFO burn out, and with more and more responsibilities given to CFOs, there is a high propensity for overload. Having the right systems in place to support financial decision making can take some of this pressure off of CFOs,” said Fox.

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