By John Foley
Learn how Oracle Cloud for Finance is the most complete application suite.
Learn why the time is right to modernize your ERP.
Once your company has recruited and hired the best and brightest recent college graduates to join the finance team, the next step is to facilitate their success by unleashing their full potential. For that, you need to give them modern tools for new ways of working.
Today's generation of up-and-coming finance professionals are digital natives. They've advanced through school with tablets and smartphones, social media, video, modern interfaces, and cloud-based applications, and they are quick learners who latch on to new technologies. As they move into the workplace, they want and expect similar capabilities.
However, many organizations are hard-pressed to meet those expectations because so much of what they spend on information technology goes toward system maintenance rather than modernization and new capabilities. Oracle CEO Mark Hurd recently estimated that 80 percent of IT spending goes to maintenance and an additional amount to security, leaving less than 20 percent of the IT budget for innovation.
As a result, consumers are often a step ahead of businesses when it comes to the technologies they use throughout the day. New employees may be less productive and even frustrated by these old-style user experiences.
Speaking at an Oracle CloudWorld event in New York recently, Hurd identified the "old status quo" of workplace IT as an impediment to corporate growth strategies. And that is a slippery slope. Hurd pointed out that 50 percent of companies that were among the Fortune 500 are no longer among that group today.
The new generation of consumers, who are also the next wave of employees, are more tech savvy than earlier generations. "Companies are selling to consumers who are innovating like crazy," Hurd said. "Millennials are much tougher customers and much more demanding employees."
Modern, cloud-based applications help companies provide a better experience for both consumers and employees, Hurd said.
In a recent column on LinkedIn, Hurd noted that millennials comprise 38 percent of Oracle's global workforce-and technology is part of the reason Oracle is able to attract them.
"We combine the best of an established, leading technology company-modern applications and work tools, world-class research and development, and lots of opportunities-with the fresh thinking and nimbleness of smaller companies," he writes. "We are deep into mobile, social, and cloud technologies."
Closing the Gap
For companies that are behind the technology curve, cloud services are typically the fastest way to catch up. For example, Oracle Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Cloud includes collaboration and mobile capabilities and lets users set preferences for personalized experiences. So workers in a finance department can collaborate using built-in social tools and access reports from a mobile device. And cloud applications have the added benefit of frequent updates and improvements.
In addition to keeping tech-savvy workers gainfully occupied, cloud-based ERP, finance, and other enterprise applications offer many business advantages, including more-efficient supply chains and the ability to close a company's financial books in hours rather than days.