When you have a problem, let’s say a health issue, you get it checked out by a doctor right?
Now let’s imagine you’re telling your doctor your elbow hurts; would you like him to jump straight to an assumed solution and cut your arm? Probably not.
You'd rather him analyse what is going on, identify the problem and treat you for the symptoms.
You would also want him to look at your environment because 1 problem doesn’t equal 1 solution or the same solution every time. It might be your exercising habit, your diet, a job that involve repetitive tasks and so forth. The treatment will vary considerably depending on internal and external factors.
Isn’t it funny that we don’t tend to take this step back in regards to technology and process optimisation. For instance, if your team is struggling with financial modelling, killing Excel altogether might not be the solution. You should probably look further.
What if your spreadsheets just need a bit of maintenance, a little exercise? Or maybe your staff needs a new training regime to be on top of their game. The problem might not the spreadsheet (or any tech for that matter) but the way your team is using it.
Does that mean you should stop there and rely solely on Excel once the pain starts to subside? Neither.
You can take away some of the heavy lifting if that’s what caused the pain in the first place or crank it up a notch so the pain never comes back and you end up in better shape. Everything is possible when you have a good base to build on.
By elevating your team skills in excel you make them a key part of the solution and you can show them the pathway to success using a solid plan and roadmap of how you intend to fix their problems. These are great ways to win their approval and get your team members on board of the innovation and value creation train.
The only way to make an appropriate decision instead of a “guesstimation” is to run a diagnostic, identify the roots of the problem and come up with a solid plan that will fix the issue but also grow with your business needs.
The past 18 months have definitely highlighted the need for adaptability and the fact that finance teams need to embrace the finance tech stack as an answer to complex problems and in response to scenario volatility. We’ve run a few projects with clients to get them ahead of the technology game and have a few more in the pipe.