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Report: CFOs Turning to Technology as their Roles Expand

accentureA majority of chief financial officers have put more emphasis on technology t0 help meet their expanding strategic responsibilities and roles as they work to grow their companies and save money, according to an Accenture Plc report.

A joint report by Accenture and Oracle Corp., “The CFO as Catalyst for Change,” showed 71 percent of CFOs believed their influence had broadened over the past three years and regarded big data, cloud computing, mobile and social media as key components to fulfilling business expectations.

Accenture and Oracle collaborated with Longitude Research to survey 930 CFOs worldwide, including 30 percent from Western Europe, 22 percent from North America, 17 percent from Eastern Europe, 16 percent from the Asia-Pacific region, 10 percent from the Middle East and Africa and 5 percent from Latin America.oracle

Donniel Schulman, managing director of finance and enterprise performance at Accenture, said finance officers use back office processes, controls and analytics to execute changes in the organization.

The survey revealed 79 percent of CFOs prioritized access to information to drive organizations while 57 percent believed big data investments could spur competitiveness.

Meanwhile, finance officers currently face challenges which can stall them from carrying out strategies including q tough economic environment, inadequate time and lack of financial integration into other organizational functions, according to the report.

The report also noted that while CFOs continue to underscore profitability, cost management, cash flow and working capital, a majority are shifting focus to strategies, operations and professional goals from information technology maintenance and integration.

“As this study shows, CFOs realize that while their role has evolved, there is still scope to expand their influence within the business and further utilize their unique skillset,” said John O’Rourke, vice president of product marketing at Oracle.

“Technology can play an important part in helping CFOs realize this potential and we hope the insights delivered in this report can help facilitate that process,” O’Rourke added.

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