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How Technology Aids Visibility into the Supply Chain

01/21/2019 By

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Graham Kelly, PrimeRevenue’s chief revenue officer.

Gone are the days when CFOs created value solely by spending time on traditional finance activities. Today’s finance executives are involved in a range of strategy-related activities that help set their companies apart in the digital economy.

According to a recent McKinsey Global Survey, this includes setting overall corporate strategy, devising pricing plans and collaborating on digitization, analytics and talent-management initiatives.

Winning in all these areas requires technology that delivers a massive amount of connected data. But, how do you compile and use data constructively to deliver transformative results?

Technology Creates a Story

First, there’s a critical difference between raw data and insight.

Raw data answers the what, but transforming data into a more consumable and tangible form answers the why.

It’s easy to pull raw data, but the key to understanding and making information useful is to create a meaningful story.

The problem is that many companies have neither the time nor the focus to visualize data. In turn, they miss vital opportunities to better consume and dissect vital information.

For this reason, best-in-class companies partner with data solutions providers to view and understand data. These partners possess the tools to provide a holistic understanding of your data, allowing you to uncover actionable insight that impacts the top and bottom lines.

Technology Augments Your Existing Data

Technology improves the quality of data.

Automation makes data collection and reporting more efficient. Even better, technology-led analytics provide companies with up-to-date, real-time information.

But it’s not enough to have quality data. Modern companies must use technology to dive deeper into areas such as the supply chain.

Technology Helps Find the Missing Links

Knowing what data is missing can be just as important as seeing available intel.

It’s shocking how many companies haven’t shifted to a data-driven culture and aren’t fully aware of the data available to them. For instance, they don’t understand supplier spend by region or how their cash conversion cycle compares to their peers.

This creates several disadvantages. For example, knowing days payable outstanding compared to competitors allows you to optimize payment terms, reduce supply chain risk and improve cash flow.

Technology gives today’s CFOs the power to harness data meaningfully and drive innovative strategy. Enterprises that create an intelligent finance organization and understand where technology is best leveraged will find themselves at an advantage compared to those that don’t.

For companies with initiatives for growth and innovation, a technology-driven data strategy will be the key to unlocking their full potential — and coming out on top.