This December, one of the most anticipated reboots of a blockbuster movie is set to be released. That original movie? Top Gun, with Tom Cruise. In the movie he is the one of the Navy’s top aviators, and a bit of a…Maverick. One of the great lines in movie history comes from the original though. The line? “I have a need, a need for speed.” In the finance world, truer words have never been more spoken.
In 2014, a CFO.com survey showed that 75% of organizations reported that ‘record to report’ process as one of two top strategic goals for financial improvements over the next 18 months. As recent as 2017, it was still taking organizations more than eight days to complete closing each quarter, with the time actually increasing due to an ever-growing environment of business complexity. And that’s just to close the books. Add on additional days to distribute the resulting Financial Statements, and the time for stakeholders to understand the meaning within the numbers, and you’re talking dog years. All kidding aside, here we are in 2020, and not much has changed. The fact of the matter is that organizational inertia is woven into the fabric of many businesses, thus becoming a roadblock to meaningful change. The need for speed has turned into watching paint dry.