In the past 15 years, finance shared service centers have become so widespread that the idea of running a top-flight finance function without one is almost unimaginable. But now that the model is so well entrenched, finance leaders appear to give less priority to how they can harness emerging practices to adjust their shared services and gain even more value.
Shared service models are still relatively new, and they are evolving quickly. We have observed significant technology shifts every few years in the tools and processes that support these business models – which in turn enable more strategic sourcing practices for both basic and higher-value finance activities.
Based on KPMG’s 2013 survey of finance executives, many of them seem to believe their shared service operations are sufficiently mature and that no further reorganization or investment is needed. This can prove a dangerous position to take.
As new technologies, business models and market opportunities emerge, companies that stand still run the risk of losing competitive advantage.
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The finance organization of the future, and indeed of today, must go beyond its business-as-usual.