Auditoria.AI’s 2020 Survey of Finance Professionals Finds the Finance Back Office Is Underserved by Automation Solutions

Auditoria.AI Releases Results of Its Survey of Finance Professionals, Showing More Than Half of Respondents Are Not Getting the Automation They Need and Shared Services Groups Are Still Largely Manual

SANTA CLARA, Calif., May 20, 2020 Auditoria.AI, a provider of AI-driven automation solutions for finance teams, today announced results of its2020 survey entitled “Automation in ERP and the Finance Back Office,” which polled hundreds of finance professionals, showing that most companies automate a small fraction of back-office processes. Further, a majority say they are not getting the automation they need from their ERP systems.

“Our survey of finance teams shows that there is a significant opportunity to increase automation in the finance back office,” says Rohit Gupta, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Auditoria.AI. “A lot of time is wasted on repetitive manual activities, including checking back-office work done by contractors or outsourced staff, following up with vendors and customers and gathering evidentiary data for audits. Auditoria.AI increases efficiencies for finance back-office professionals with its AI-driven automation platform that supercharges ERP applications while streamlining planning and audit efforts.” 

The Auditoria.AI survey, a first of its kind in the industry, asked respondents to identify the sources of friction that result in inefficiencies in the finance back office.  The obstacles cited include manual tasks, repetitive follow-ups, and checking the work of others. The survey also uncovered that finance teams spent a significant amount of time in manual data gathering activities and were challenged with delivering predictive forecasts and other analytical insights to the executive C-Suite. Lastly, the survey also identified automation and digital transformation as key post-pandemic imperatives for CFOs. 

“It’s remarkable that despite all of the advances in technology, most accounting, audit, and finance back-office processes are still largely manual activities,” states Tyler Sloat, Chief Financial Officer of Freshworks, an early adopter. “Enterprises globally, regardless of industry vertical or scale, have a significant opportunity in not just increasing automation, but in improving business resiliency and streamlining all customer and supplier interactions, from invoicing to payment processing to collections.”

The survey uncovered several challenges and inefficiencies within the corporate finance function: 

  • There is a significant opportunity to increase automation in the finance back office. A high degree of manual effort persists in finance, with a majority of respondents reporting low levels or a complete lack of automation in the finance back office. 
  • Modern ERP systems have helped with basic automation. Still, two out of three respondents are not automating a significant part of the routine tasks in the accounts payable, accounts receivable, and audit functions. 
  • Repetitive follow-up activities slow down accounting and finance teams. 82% spend up to one full day each month repeatedly following up with vendors, customers, and internal stakeholders. Lack of responsiveness is the top challenge for 52% of respondents. 
  • Checking the work of outsourced services consumes additional time, with 72% spending up to one full day each month on this activity. 
  • Audit readiness activities cause teams to work against tight timelines, the primary source of pain for 36% of respondents, as they continually seek evidentiary and supporting data. 
  • Most finance teams do not use predictive recommendation analytics and resort to manual approaches to achieve analytical insights. Automated recommendation analytics are not widely deployed in corporate finance.

To view and download the summary of the Auditoria.AI 2020 Survey: Automation in ERP and the Finance Back Office, visit https://auditoria.ai/survey