Organizations in every sector face the challenge of becoming responsive and insight-driven businesses. Consumer products firms are no exception, but they must pull this off while customer demand and distribution channels become increasingly fragmented and margins are squeezed ever tighter.
To support that transformation, the finance function must also raise its game, providing the business with deeper insights while continuing to find efficiencies. The automation of finance operations using intelligent technologies such as robotic process automation (RPA), artificial intelligence (AI), and machine learning is integral to this effort.
For many consumer products firms, finance automation is part of a broader effort to automate front- and back-office processes. In a Capgemini survey, 44% of senior finance executives from the sector say that their firm has an enterprise-wide automation strategy. The same proportion say that an agreed automation strategy is being pursued in the finance function. In terms of having a strategic focus for automation, finance teams in consumer product firms appear to be ahead of those in other sectors.
What do consumer products firms seek to achieve through automation? The reduction of operating costs is their top-ranked imperative, followed by reducing the cost of compliance and helping the company to enter new markets. Other high-ranking objectives include improving the customer experience, innovating new products and services, and improving cybersecurity.
What does the research tell consumer products firms about how to succeed at finance automation?
- A joined-up strategy provides a firm footing for automation success.
- The vision for automation should extend beyond cost efficiency.
- It may be early days for automation, but governance should be addressed now.
- There is no time to lose in building knowledge and awareness.
Read the full report to learn how intelligent automation is transforming finance in the consumer products sector.
Read our main “Reimagining finance for the digital age” report that surveys 500 senior finance executives in Europe and North America about how intelligent automation is transforming the finance function.