Basware Connect – What’s on the Horizon for Finance and Procurement?

Basware – the P2P process and financial management specialists – will be holding their annual event this month (which is free to attend by the way and very worthwhile for anyone involved in P2P or financial procurement, and finance practitioners, partners, and industry experts). Basware Connect takes place October 18, at CodeNode, 10 South Place in London – it’s a very large, open and ‘futuristic’ event space, so hopefully the perfect place to address the topic of The Future of Finance and Procurement.

That doesn’t sound too controversial a topic, we might think, but Basware have laid out a varied array of thought-leaders and industry experts to persuade us otherwise. They’ll be exploring the effects and impact of robotics, machine learning and predictive analytics on the finance and procurement functions. So will they tell us it’s all going to be exciting and we should look forward and embrace it all? Or might there be messages of fear and uncertainty about exactly what’s on the horizon?

Basware VP of Purchase to Pay will be updating us on what disruption, innovation and transformation might mean for Finance and Procurement, looking at the most probable trends coming our way that will shape those future roles. He’ll explore what the critical skillsets are that will be needed to take advantage of, or even just face, these challenges – or should we call them opportunities?

And a couple of external speakers we’ve seen on the agenda should prove well worth a listen: firstly, Natalie Ceeney. Natalie is Chair of Innovate Finance, an independent membership association that represents the UK's global FinTech community, and non-exec director of Countrywide plc – the UK's largest property services group. Alongside being a coach and mentor for Mentoring Business, she is also a keynote speaker and moderator with the Specialist Speaker Bureau, focusing on transformation, technology and the future of work, and is a business advisor in these areas. So plenty of expertise to back up her presentation on Change and Transformation – The Future of Finance, where she will talk about the impact of automation, AI, machine learning and technology generally on society, business and the finance function.

We asked Natalie to tell us a bit more about her topic - so here are the questions she’s going to be considering:

“Is Stephen Hawkins right to suggest that the coming technology ‘could spell the end of the human race’ or is technology actually going to liberate us? What will be the role for professionals when technology can sort through data and draw together ‘so whats’ far quicker and more effectively than any human? And what do we all need to do to stay ahead and thrive in the years ahead?

So why this particular topic, and why now? We asked.

“Well, we’ve all seen phenomenal change in our lives – most of us have lived through the birth of the internet and the mobile phone, so we’re a generation used to change. But we’re also human, and for most of us, change is scary. And the dire predictions of 30-50% of jobs being lost lead many of us to wonder what the future means for us, personally and professionally. A key part of adapting and staying ahead is to understand what’s coming – so a key part of my speech will centre on that – particularly for finance professionals who have a core role in advising the rest of the business.”

It sounds like Natalie will have some useful insight to share – and we would imagine some poignant questions to answer too. So we’ll definitely be at that slot. Another guest speaker presentation we thought sounded well worth attending is Black Box Thinking - High Performance in a Complex and Changing World, from Matthew Syed, a columnist at the Times.

Matthew Syed is known as an influential thinker in the field of high performance and cultural change. He has a pretty impressive background too, having worked with some of the world’s leading organisations to build a mindset for continuous improvement, and has been a regular feature writer for leading publications in the media. He’s got a few books behind him too – one he authored ‘Black Box Thinking’ – a new approach to high performance and finding an edge in a complex and fast-changing world - will certainly be the reference for his speech. One thing we didn’t know though – is that Matthew was also England table tennis number one for almost a decade, three times Commonwealth Champion, and twice represented Great Britain in the Olympic Games!

But back to his speech – he will be giving his take on how we approach high performance, looking at some real-life examples that have roots in sport, business, education and politics. He’ll be giving us the inside story of how success really happens – and how we cannot grow unless we are prepared to learn from our mistakes. Not to be missed – we’re sure.

So, as well as keeping up to date with what’s happening in the world of P2P, discussing topics, networking, attending workshops, seeing demos, and asking lots of questions, maybe we’ll be treated to some top notch table tennis sport too!

Register here.


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