Accenture at the Finance Indaba: crucial insights into Zero-Based budgeting

"Zero-Based Budgeting is a new way of budgeting annually to allow business to prioritise and investing in activities that will drive competitive advantage and revenue growth," says Dr Madeleine Joubert, Finance and Enterprise Performance Lead at Accenture. "Companies should consider removing waste and freeing up capital that can then be turned to more lucrative activities. At the Indaba, we’ll provide them with the insights and expertise on how to achieve exactly that."

Why is Accenture presenting at the Finance Indaba and what will the company be talking about?
"Our focus really is around the future of finance, looking at using Zero-Based Budgeting (ZBB) to fuel growth. Most companies need a growth injection and we encourage them to consider breaking with the historical view on budgeting. Gone are the days of just about cutting costs or pinching pennies."

"Companies should consider removing waste and freeing up capital that can then be turned to more lucrative activities. At the Indaba, we'll provide them with the insights and expertise on how to achieve exactly that."

"We will also be looking at digital finance. Tomorrow's digital finance organisation is a radical departure from the status quo. Digital will reconfigure today's process-focused model into a predictive insight-driven engine for any business. We will discuss how digital is evolving the finance organisation, how it will impact the role of the CFO and the function of finance, as well as the people companies will hire in future."

Why should finance professionals know about zero-based budgeting?
"Growth is on the agenda for businesses across sectors - even as market volatility remains at an all-time high. CEOs, CFOs and COOs recognise that their organisations must get fit and stay fit to compete amid several disruptive changes, such as rising costs, globalised competition, and decreasing Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA). However, gaining the agility to compete isn't a one-time exercise, and it's not about just cutting costs or pinching pennies."

"ZBB is a new way of budgeting annually to allow business to prioritise and investing in activities that will drive competitive advantage and revenue growth."

"In order to gain the agility to compete, finance professionals need to create a more efficient operating model that delivers on the business strategy, embed process excellence throughout the organisation to drive effectiveness and differentiate by building leading-edge capabilities."

What are the biggest challenges faced by finance professionals?
"Finance professionals are challenged by complex legacy systems and environment, managing the complex needs of a growing number of stakeholders, and managing new and complex risks. Successful businesses must find ways of embracing and navigating complexity - by optimising processes and operating models to streamline and simplify the organisation."

"Digital has the potential to help businesses navigate such complexities. Digital technologies - such as cloud computing, software as a service (SaaS), big data and analytics, mobility and social media - are having a significant impact on the finance function's performance. The evolution of such digital assets, software and services is an opportunity for CFOs to accept and exploit the digital revolution, given their unique position at the intersection of finance, technology and strategy."

What can Accenture do that no other company can do?
"Accenture is able to assist businesses to establish an effective underlying operating model to unlock value, as well as making them understand how to make each area of the value chain as effective as possible. Current processes are often inefficient. For instance, a business hires a person through one function, pays them through another function and tracks their performance through another function. This disjointed way of working is costly, and teams may not be aligned with the company's business strategy. Success stems from breaking down internal silos that make processes disjointed, and instead focus on creating end-to-end processes."