Although finance professionals have access to a wealth of data, a lack of transparency of business processes makes it difficult to identify the most profitable business areas.

For example, in an independent survey of senior UK finance and management professionals by Exact and analyst house K2 Advisory, more than 370 UK finance professionals were interviewed to assess the effectiveness of their ability to financially manage expansion in the current economic climate.

The results were interesting and, perhaps surprisingly, positive about future economic recovery. Nearly two-thirds of the finance professionals questioned were targeting growth. Of those, the majority were anticipating growth of above 5%, while 21% of those surveyed anticipated growth of more than 10%. The main challenge was the management of profit margins while going for revenue growth; which is difficult when a lack of business transparency impairs a business’s ability to track spending.

When K2 Advisory asked which issues finance professionals experienced as a result of a lack of business transparency, 42% said that delays in reporting created “notable or significant difficulties”. Furthermore, 46% of respondents said that a lack of business transparency was affecting their organisation’s ability to make timely decisions.

45% of participants said they experienced either notable or significant difficulty in identifying and reporting on the profitable areas of their business. The implications of this in ‘the real world’ are significant. The more you know about which parts of the business are performing well – and which are performing badly – the more you can do to enhance or rectify those areas.

Clearly, where there has been consistent under-investment in the systems used by the finance department, it is reasonable to assume that insufficient tools are to blame. The current lack of transparency can preclude organisations from being agile and prevent management from gaining critical insight into the profitable areas of their business.

Take a look at our website to find out how our software tools can help improve business transparency.