5 tech predictions for finance in 2017

Technology is regularly revolutionizing the work of the accounting and finance departments at companies of all sizes, and 2017 looks likely to deliver more of the same.

To help you and your clients stay on top of the emerging trends, Don Mal, CEO of Vena Solutions, a provider of corporate performance management software, put together this list of top predictions for finance and corporate performance management.

Tech Predictions list cover
A guide to the coming year for you and your clients
Technology is regularly revolutionizing the work of the accounting and finance departments at companies of all sizes, and 2017 looks likely to deliver more of the same.

To help you and your clients stay on top of the emerging trends, Don Mal, CEO of Vena Solutions, a provider of corporate performance management software, put together this list of top predictions for finance and corporate performance management.
Computer with spreadsheet
1. Spreadsheets will become sexy again
Recent years have brought cries of Excel's demise, but they couldn't be more unfounded. In fact, more than 90 percent of enterprise finance departments in 2017 will rely heavily on Excel for mission-critical functions, from automated budgeting to account reconciliations.

Even vendors who have spent the last decade disparaging Excel are reversing course to embrace the world's most intuitive, powerful and popular spreadsheet software. Long live Excel!
2017 in skywriting
2. Mega-vendors will lose more market share to nimble cloud vendors
Today, the benefits of cloud computing (security, scalability, accessibility, and more) are proven and validated beyond a reasonable doubt. It’s not surprising that the cloud has become a mainstay in finance, IT and operational departments worldwide. Indeed, 93 percent of businesses are already using cloud technology in some form today.

While Oracle, SAP and other mega-vendors continue their slow migration to cloud software delivery, their customers remain months or quarters away from being able to implement or migrate to cloud solutions. In 2017, forward-thinking finance departments will increasingly look to more nimble technology innovators to replace or complement their mega-vendor solutions.
Clouds and skyscrapers
3. The cloud will continue its march to domination in enterprise software
During the past decade, cloud computing has gone from promising disrupter to essential tool for worldwide organizations, both large and small. Cloud technologies today know no barriers – supporting and powering countless applications and data, from ERP systems to customer-facing mobile apps. In 2017, we will see the cloud’s influence and value continue to grow, with far-reaching impacts on the enterprise software market.
Tablet with 3D financial data
4. Finance teams will own their technology (and not be beholden to IT)
Until recently, finance leaders from enterprise organizations have had to rely on IT personnel and teams to assist with even simple financial queries or reporting projects. 2017 will see finance leaders getting empowered and seeking to own their software completely, no longer relying on IT for everything from initial installation to customization.

Given the ease in deploying cloud solutions that work today, it’s easier than ever to circumvent IT in picking the right software solutions for a business. Going forward, finance enterprise applications will be increasingly built for business users, not IT administrators.
Performance management
5. Performance management evolves to performance transformation
More and more CFOs are recognizing finance’s value in providing performance transformation. This means going beyond producing fancy charts and graphs on trends, to actually analyzing and using data to derive actionable business insights that will benefit the company. 2017 will see this trend continue, as the CFO becomes an even greater player in the C-suite. Consequently, finance teams will choose flexible corporate performance management solutions over the traditional out-of-the-box options.