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From Scorekeeper to Trusted Advisor: The evolution of the FP&A Business Partner

By Gemma DavieSenior Director, Financial Planning & Analysis at CA Technologies, member of London FP&A Board

We only need to look at the evolution of the mobile phone to understand why the role of the FP&A business partner has changed. In 2000, I began my career in FP&A as an analyst at Silicon Graphics, the same year that the iconic Nokia 6210 was launched.  Back then the functionality of the mobile phone was limited to voice calls and simple text messages. Who would have thought that 16 years later, we would be using mobile phones to pay our bills, control our heating, take part in video conferences and monitor our health?  The mobile phone “app” economy has transformed our day to day lives.

As technology has continued to evolve at an increasing speed and the business environment has become so complex and volatile, decisions have to be made quickly and the demand for timely, flexible, forward-looking analysis has transformed the role of the FP&A business partner.

A New Approach to Business Forecasting

By Steve Morlidge, Business Forecasting thought leader, author of "Future Ready: How to Master Business Forecasting" and  "The Little Book of Beyond Budgeting" 

Many millions of people are stuck with the habit of smoking. They know its bad for them and it will eventually kill them, yet they continue. They may have tried to quit many times but they are stuck in a rut. Experience has shown that to successfully break habits you must stop things as well as start doing new things.

The current practice of management exhibits some very bad habits. One key cause is an underlying philosophy of “command and control.” Managers know it is bad for them and it kills motivation, initiative, flexibility and innovation on a daily basis.

Why is the ROI of your FP&A team so hard to measure?

By James Myers, Global Finance Executive and FInance Transformation Consultant

Financial Planning and Analysis (FP&A), play a pivotal role between Strategy, Business and Data: a business partner advisor, helping to form a pathway that navigates an uncertain future, but in reality the value created is very difficult to measure. It’s critical to the health of the organization, much the way supplements build up the immune system for a healthier life.

Supplements and Vitamins are an essential part of our daily life, giving us the ability to get up and go - but how do we measure these benefit? Most of the benefits are long term: living healthier, happier, more successful lives. That has been the fundamental issue with FP&A, it’s often difficult for a company to invest in building future capabilities as the ROI is not obvious or difficult to calculate.

James Myers is the founder and CEO of FP&A Strategy Consulting, helping to accelerate finance transformation resulting in smarter organizations that focus their talent on issues that matter.

James is a thought leader in FP&A and has presented at many Finance summits.  He has also held various finance and operations leadership roles in multinationals such as Dell and Nokia and has clients such as Hewlett Packard Enterprise.  James holds advanced degrees in finance and accounting and is a qualified Chartered Accountant.  In his spare time he is also a Co-Program lead for the Silicon Valley Startup Leadership Program and runs the Silicon Valley Power BI User Group.

LinkedInwww.linkedin.com/in/jamesmyersw

 

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How to Become an FP&A Professional

By Simone da Silva Collins, Finance Manager, Polycom

Have you thought of becoming an FP&A professional?

When I was studying for my accounting qualification, I assumed I would become a traditional accountant. I did not know then how wrong this assumption would prove to be. This article gives an insight to my path in becoming an FP&A professional and short guide on how to become one.

Simone da Silva Collins is an FP&A professional working in Polycom, an industry leader in unified collaboration solutions.

She provides business partnering to various departments of Polycom in EMEA. She was previously the Group Finance Analyst supporting the Executive Team at Intec (now part of CSG), a provider of Business Support System (BSS) software and related services, primarily for the telecommunications industry. She also worked for Telewest (now part of Virgin Media) for over 7 years providing commercial and financial support to the Interconnect team.

Simone is originally from Macau in SE Asia. She gained her Masters at Manchester Business School. She has also recently achieved FP&A accreditation.

Movie Sequel – “Accountant Pirates of the Caribbean”

By Gary CokinsFounder and CEO: Analytics-Based Performance Management LLC

Please forgive me for my persistent rant and criticism against accountants who budget poorly or continue to calculate the substantial and growing high indirect and shared costs originating from resource expenses such as salaries, supplies, power, information technologies, and travel. I cannot seem to hold back my frustration. 

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