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Pandemic puts emerging technologies front and center

Even before the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic forced businesses to make a quick pivot toward realtime data analytics and work-from-home arrangements, companies and organizations have already acknowledged the importance of digital transformation as a future-proofing strategy.

But now more than ever, business leaders need emerging technologies to adapt to shifting market conditions under the new normal.

Consumers are now relying more heavily on online transactions and shipments while supply chain partners are requiring real time information to ensure efficient operations.

A recent survey
jointly conducted by Oracle and Enterprise Strategy Group, covering 700 finance and operations leaders across 13 countries, shows that cloud-based technologies for finance or supply chain operations have become widely adopted across industries. These emerging technologies are likewise exceeding expectations when it comes to improving productivity and streamlining processes as well as increasing security and preventing fraud.

More than two-thirds of the business leaders who participated in the survey concede that most financial approvals will be automated within the next five years.

An overwhelming 91 percent of the respondents consider the software delivery method SaaS (Software as a Service) an enabler of emerging technology adoption.

At least 74 percent of organizations also agree that intelligent automation will be critical to keep pace with rapidly shifting regulations within the next five years.

The benefits are outpacing expectations by a wide margin.

Specific to finance-related technology, users of artificial intelligence report an average improvement of 33 percent in productivity and 37 percent reduction in errors. Organizations that have incorporated AI into their finance systems have slashed the time needed to complete the monthly financial close process by about four days on average while as many as 88 percent those leveraging IoT data in their financial systems are achieving higher return on investment.

For supply chain management technology, 75 percent of respondents credit chatbots and intelligent voice assistants with increasing the use of apps by suppliers and customers. More than two-thirds likewise agree that the ability to verify supply chain monitoring with blockchain will reduce incidents of fraud 50 percent or more over the next five years.

Whether it be revenue growth, profitability, market share, or innovation, aggressive adopters of emerging technology for finance and operations tend to outperform and outpace their peers.

And at a time when it pays to move quickly, cloud-based solutions provide real-time data and analysis and allows organizations to scale at a faster speed. Businesses that connect and integrate intelligent data are the future, and today’s successful companies have employed these emerging technologies yesterday.