The Tech Stack of a CFO – Why ERPs and “One Size Fits All” Solutions Are Dying

This interview is taken from an episode of the Spend Culture Stories podcast.

About the Podcast:

Your company culture might attract talent, but your Spend Culture will make or break your company.
Spend Culture Stories is a female-hosted and produced podcast that helps finance leaders learn the tactics, strategies, and processes to build a proactive Spend Culture.
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The Tech Stack of a CFO – Why ERPs and “One Size Fits All” Solutions Are Dying – Paul Riegel, Regional Director of the CFO Centre

CFO. Finance Consultant. Digital Evangelist. Regional Director of the CFO Centre.

Paul Riegel, CPA, CGA is the Regional Director at the CFO Centre, a firm that provides the skills and experience of large company CFOs to small & medium sized enterprises on a part-time basis. He is an experienced executive leader with a successful history of leading change and driving profitability and cost savings in the private and public sectors.
From startups to SMEs, Paul’s seen it all – and the mistakes they’ve made with their spending and tech stack.

In this episode, Paul shares the red flags to look for when it comes to poor spend management, and the tech stack recommended for CFOs to cultivate a healthy Spend Culture.

Speakers: Paul Riegel, Regional Director of the CFO Centre

Listen to the Episode Now:

Notable Quotes:

So based on your experience and the things that you’ve seen throughout your career are there some common mistakes that companies are making in terms of their spending that you’re kind of seeing as a reoccurring trend?

“I recall a couple of instances in my background where there’s been, you know (as some would call), “horror stories” around company spending. And I think that some of the most significant stories in my career have been project over expenditures. These are either in major systems implementations or construction projects, and I’ve actually seen some fairly significant over expenditures in both of these areas.

It seemed to me that it stemmed from a few things: a lack of adequate project monitoring, controls, reporting, and communication system in the organization. And an organization on personal stress in the business seeks to recalibrate and recover from the situation.

So, generally it’s just really either not having the tools to monitor spanned data quickly, or just not the rigour of analyzing and reporting and communicating the spend. The results also span to the people that are decision makers in your organization.”

 

In terms of technology are there any key pieces of technology that you think a CFO should have to be able to do their job most effectively?

“As far as systems are concerned, I’ve also seen a trend – to migrate to the best of breed and systems away from the one size fits all ERP solutions that businesses used to prefer, say, 5-10 years ago.
Nowadays, companies may have a base accounting system, but however, may choose to go with a different brand for other related software solutions such as purchasing or spend management. But regardless of its size, any business needs a base system.”

Organizations are moving away from the one size fits all solution. Why do you think that is?

“Let’s face it. No one developer can build an application that meets all of the needs all of the time in the best way possible. So there are other companies that have decided to branch out and develop software that meets a particular niche such as payroll applications or purchasing applications, and that sort of thing. And by doing that, they have actually offered more functionality that better suits the needs of the business than those that are native to the ERP or one size fits all applications.”

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