Infosys’ blog on industry solutions, trends, business process transformation and global implementation in Oracle.

September 21, 2016

Integrated profitability analytics - The need, struggles and future

 

Introduction:

Banks have enjoyed relatively high profit margins for long time. But the recent trends in Banks profit margins have not been very encouraging.  The recent business developments like changing technological landscape, higher capital requirement on regulatory front and entry of newer payments and banking platform have led to significant decrease in profit margins and highly vulnerable customers.

 

To sustain, grow and compete with new fintech (finance technology) start-ups, financial services enterprises need to continuously evolve and provide more value to their customers at a much lower cost. This requires multidimensional profitability view across the enterprise at the most granular level and timely availability of analytics for key business decision.

Key focus of financial services enterprise

Due to the changes in business environment the focus on enterprise-wide profitability measurement has increased. The focus is more on managing information rather than accounting information - information which can be used to support business decisions based on the granular customer level analytics. This level of information helps to answer key business parameters like which parameters can be changed to increase profitability, how do a product and geography compare with other, which are my highly profitable customers etc?

Challenges on the road to achieving integrated profitability analytics

The key challenge is the complex landscape due to multiple systems operating in silos. This makes it very complex and time consuming process to bring all the data at the granular level together in same format without data quality issues. Other challenges include custom built solution which is difficult to maintain and change, static allocation engine which is very inefficient and cannot take dynamically changing driver data from multiple systems.

Therefore it is imperative to adopt the right solution which can produce the required information accurately and timely to support decision making. The solution should be able to provide a holistic view of profitability across the enterprise at an account and customer level. Typically, enterprises find it difficult to allocate indirect cost. This requires the solution to have robust and dynamic allocation framework adaptable as per business needs.

Infosys Approach for integrated profitability analytics

 

Infosys profitability analytics solution leverages oracle financial services profitability management (OFSAA) to provide integrated profitability analytics. This can be integrated with OFSAA analytics solutions such as enterprise, retail and institutional performance analytics to gain an in-depth view and ready-to-use dashboards. The enables institutions to gain an integrated and multidimensional profitability view across dimensions such as product, channel and even individual customers.

Business benefits of the solution

  • Incorporate risk into business decision making

  • Prioritize customers based on profits generated

  • Achieve a consistent view of performance across the organization

  • Get timely profitability insights for go-to-market strategy

     

Conclusion

With the ever changing business environment, intensified competition and increasing need for personalized products and services, the financial services industry would look for more detailed analytics. This would enable them to offer a bespoke product to cater to the specific needs of a customer. Infosys approach for profitability analytics solution helps enterprise achieve multidimensional integrated profitability analytics at the most granular level. The solution helps the management not only to evaluate and retain the existing avenues but also explore newer opportunities.

September 20, 2016

Improving Performance of your Sales Personnel - The Cloud Way

 

Over the years, traditional CRM solutions have expanded from being customer centric to maintaining a good health of the sales organization. Having a seamless and trustworthy system for incentivizing the Salesforce, goes a long way in improving the sales morale, thereby increasing the productivity. Further from a business standpoint, the incentivizing solution should help align the sales behavior to corporate goals. This is where Oracle sales cloud incentive compensation plugs in as a potential game changer to both the stakeholders: Salesforce and Organization. It is a global compensation management application that allows organizations to align the business objectives with sales force activities. Using OSC IC, organizations can leverage a calculation engine which can seamlessly cater to on-time and precise payments.

Sales organizations which continue to use spreadsheets, have failed to optimize sales planning and faced roadblocks in maintaining a motivated Salesforce. Some of the pain areas that have caused continual trouble to such organizations have been low sales morale, misaligned sales behavior due to lack of intersection between the organizations sales strategy and the compensation plan modelling. Also as a by-product of this, attrition in sales teams and retention of top talent has become an area of paramount concern. Henceforth having an automated, scalable and flexible commission calculation engine has attained greater importance.


Key Pain Points


 


Oracle Sales Cloud (OSC) IC as a Solution


Given the wide range of challenges that organizations have to address, Oracle Sales Cloud (OSC) IC Module provides a comprehensive solution to handle all of these aspects.





Use Case to Articulate the Benefits


Let's take an example of Sales Organization generating a revenue of 50 million dollars annually, with an average of 5 %( 2.5 million dollars) estimated towards the incentives payout/cost over the year.

Considering the below Key Performance Indictor's (KPI)  to evaluate the Return on Investment / Net benefit by automating via OSC IC.


 





So the overall monetary gain amounts to approximately 1 million dollars. Apart from these tangible benefits, there are other non-tangible gains like maintaining a high sales morale, retaining and rewarding top performers.


End to End Incentive Compensation via OSC IC


Design & communicate incentive programs that align with corporate strategy.

Measure attainment against sales targets / goals.

Reward sales behavior.

Analyze the sales / incentive payout numbers.  

 







     




















Happy Customers with Augmented Humanity - AI

 

In today's increasingly competitive world, organizations need to do things differently, yet in a way that they stay relevant to customers. A major dimension of this is customer experience (CX) - the interaction between customers and organizations over the course of their continued relationship, eventually culminating into a purchase. Such a relationship includes attracting a customer, making them aware, and cultivating a transactional relationship with them, eventually leading to a purchase, use of a service, and advocacy for the organization by the customer.

 

A recent research by Gartner indicates that very soon, close to 89 percent of businesses will compete mainly on customer experience, making CX the differentiating factor for any business. With the advent of automation, implementing technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and cloud in business processes will become imperative for companies to enhance their reach. Consider the following facts: Google's voice recognition technology now claims 98 percent accuracy and Facebook's DeepFace boasts a 97 percent success rate in facial recognition. These are all artificial intelligence (AI) technologies and they are all successful. 

The question now is, 'how can organizations involve AI in CX?' To answer this, we need to first understand what exactly AI is (and no, it's not your typical, Hollywood Sci-Fi movie's AI that is ready to take over the Earth and overpower humans!). Artificial intelligence is in fact intelligence exhibited by a machine that evaluates its environmental factors to churn out actionable outcomes based on cognitive logic, in order to take decisions like a human. AI adds relevance to any intellectual task, and when this technique reaches mainstream-use, it is described as the 'AI effect.' 

AI in CX 1.JPG

AI is everywhere and assisting millions of users daily in the most subtle way

 

Sounds too fancy to be true? Well, AI is actually involved in our day-to-day lives in various aspects like

activity recognition, which basically determines what a person is doing and based on the activity, decides what is the appropriate response / action that needs to be taken. Then there is natural language processing (NLP), in which the machine has the ability to recognize, interpret, and synthesize speech. An extension of this technology is the deep learning approach used by Google in RankBrain, which analyzes vast amounts of digital data in order to find relevance in content and queries. It can learn all sorts of useful tasks, like identifying photos, recognizing commands spoken into a smartphone, and accordingly respond to internet search queries. In terms of self service support, AI is used to create assisted customer care, wherein the interaction with customers is handled by machines. Chatterbots are another extension of this technology, where AI talks to humans over text chats. Siri, WeChat, IBM Watson, etc. are popular examples of this technology created over different platforms, which can additionally be embedded in websites and messaging applications. There are AI tools that are designed to augment human intelligence using an AI technique known as intelligence amplification.

 

Recent advances in AI and machine learning capabilities assure that AI can help improve customer experience significantly. There are several potential use cases for AI in the CX lifecycle that can be envisaged in the near future; such as:

 

Innovative marketing

1. Targeted advertisements and campaigns: Advertisements, which are the most basic form of marketing, can be optimized to be more targeted with the help of deep learning, by detecting trends in user behavior through internet content. Artificial intelligence will help increase the likelihood that a user will click on an ad and thus achieve better cost-per-acquisition for the organization.

2. Automated product pricing: With multiple products and different business factors that impact sales, estimating a cost-to-sales ratio -- commonly known as price elasticity -- can be difficult. AI can prove to be helpful here, with its ability to work out dynamic price optimization by analyzing pricing trends and environmental factors that affect sales.

3. Lead assistant bots: Sales leads assistance bots can be developed with AI to nurture your leads through constant interactions, at various touch points. The AI engine can be configured to generate leads based on various sources and also initiate a personalized email campaign or other media interaction for the targeted segment. The AI can then nurture the leads and hand them over to sales reps when such leads turn hot.

 

Accelerating sales

1. Complementary sales: AI can be used to upsell and cross-sell across product groups by providing potential customer recommendations with the help of AI-assisted analytics. The AI engine can analyze the information gathered from different sources, linking it to industry, purchase patterns, product types, etc. to suggest products to potential customers. Armed with information about different customer attributes, skillset of sales reps, and relationships with different types of customers, the engine can learn and recommend what combination of customers and sales reps yields the best results.

2. AI can recommend the most optimum territory coverage based on sales rep relationships, affinity, and strengths, alongside quotas based on industry statistics as well as historical sales.

3. With the help of social and digital platforms, AI technology can be used to enhance customer contact touch points. Different people have different preferences and adjusting your way of interacting with customers can help your business satisfy them better.

4. AI can also help in recognizing patterns and behaviors of customers to automatically generate action alerts. Additionally, by studying these patterns, AI can help recognize the most appropriate sales and service channels for a customer. AI-aided speech recognition could be used to spot key words and consequently trigger service enhancements.

6. AI can help businesses have effortless omnichannel engagement with customers across all channels, including phones, tablets, websites, etc. It can also guide sales reps to communicate with customers through the channel of their choice. This is not only a means of effective information, but also serves to elevate the quality of service and nurture better relationships with customers.

 

Powered with high-quality data, strong algorithms, and excellent computing power, AI is already paving the way for human brain-like behavior. Given the significant leaps in cloud technology, we can expect this space to witness some rapid innovation.

AI in CX 2.jpg

Critical Success factors of AI

 

It's clear that AI advancements and cognitive technologies will result in tangible results, such as upselling, increased loyalty, and cost savings. AI-driven customer experience can positively impact the bottom-line for a business and successfully make customers happy by:

  • Optimizing the selling and service time by inducing faster actions and decisions to satisfy customers who seek quicker responses

  • Providing better outcomes, be it via a resolution tailored to a customer's problem or faster diagnosis of an issue faced by the customer

  • Improving efficiency of operations and employees

  • Reducing labor costs through intelligent automation of service tasks, assignments, etc.

  • Greater scale of performing major tasks quickly that are otherwise too tedious to be performed manually.

  • Bringing innovations in products and services, such as improving customer service with personalized responses, and launching new approaches.

Rapid innovation is going to make AI a critical success factor in customer relationship management across various sectors. It will bridge the gap across digital, online, and offline channels, leading to improved efficiency, reduced costs, increased revenues and ultimately, a better and more connected customer service landscape.

Coalition loyalty: Loyalty's new definition

 

Coalition loyalty - the next-generation loyalty that increases customer satisfaction through easy earn and burn points across businesses is gaining traction quickly the world over. Coalition loyalty offers incentives / rewards to customers of two or more businesses. Although not a new concept, it is gaining traction quickly, the world over.

 

A coalition loyalty requires an anchor who brings partners from various services or product domains onto a single platform and allows the points issued by one vendor to be interchangeably used with another vendor on the same platform. It essentially works as a Loyalty Sharing group between the participating partners.

 

Next-generation loyalty offerings are fast moving in this direction with customers reopening some of their inactive loyalty accounts, with the prospect of being able to use points beyond just one brand.

 

The success of coalition loyalty lies in the usage of a settlement system that helps in reducing the settlement time between earn & burn partners in addition to helping in reducing operational costs and preventing revenue leakage, thereby enhancing customer satisfaction.

 

Infosys has implemented a solution for such settlement needs using Oracle's stack of products such as Revenue Management and Billing (RMB), Oracle BI Publisher (OBIEE) and Oracle Documaker.



  • Oracle's Revenue Management & Billing (ORMB) - rules based system for billing, payment and collections


  • Oracle's Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE)  - for management reporting needs


  • Oracle Documaker - for printing statements from ORMB


 

 

To read more about the need for Coalition Loyalty and understand the settlement solution from Infosys, please visit us at Oracle Open World 2016 to know more about this solution.

 

September 17, 2016

Decoding GST for Oracle Customers

 

As India gets ready to implement the new GST law, the question on top of most of the IT leaders, finance leaders is regarding the readiness of the IT systems to meet the new requirements.

Are the changes to the system simple or complex? How long will it take to solution and implement the change?  Has this been done before? Can you speed up the process? When do we start with work to be ready on time? These are absolute valid concerns and need immediate attention.

Infosys has been working on building the solution to help enterprises move to new GST law smoothly and quickly. The Infosys solution

-          Uses the Infosys 'Tax Assessment' framework to understand the likely impact areas.

-          Uses the Infosys pre-built solutions, templates to solution the requirements

-          Uses the Infosys Intrak implementation approach to implement the solutions

Note, the solution has not considered Localization patches which Oracle may come up with. As of now, Oracle is still working on the localization patches. 

Assessment - Infosys Tax Assessment framework:

The Infosys Tax Assessment framework, has been built based on our experience in implementing tax solutions across the world for VAT, Sales tax regimes in Americas, EMEA, and APAC.  The framework ensures the tax impacts - easily and in a structured way without any misses.

The Infosys Tax Assessment framework, discusses the impacts within the below five boundaries.

1.       Master Data

2.       Tax rules ( defaulting tax on business transactions)

3.       Cutover Impacts

4.       Business documents

5.       Reporting and Accounting

The provision of 'Credits and Refunds' have also created a lot of confusion and anxiety.  The Infosys framework has been tailored to assess the likely systemic requirements around credits and refunds.

1.       Master Data -

Master data like supplier master, customer master, legal entity setups, General Ledger accounts and Part master needs to be enriched with the new tax registration details and exemption details to meet the GST law requirements.

GST Requirements on Registration:

As per the Model bill, the existing dealers would be automatically migrated. The new GSTIN will be a 15-digit GSTIN based on IT PAN.

Liability to get registered: Every supplier should be registered if aggregate turnover in a Financial year exceeds 0.9 million / 9 Lakhs INR (0.4 million / 4 Lakhs INR if the business is registered in North Eastern States and Sikkim).

 

Liability to pay tax:  will be after crossing the threshold of 0. 5 Million / 5 Lakhs INR for NE states and Sikkim and 1 Million / 10 Lakhs INR for Rest of India. Small dealers having sales below 5 million INR can also adopt the Composition scheme and pay flat of about 1 to 4% tax on turnover.

The tax is also determined based on the type of item, hence the parts should also be categorized using HSN Code.

2.       Tax Rules (defaulting tax on business transactions)

The tax rules default the tax rates on different transactions - P2P transactions and O2C transactions.  The Infosys 'Tax Assessment' framework helps building a tax matrix capturing all the tax rules in a single matrix, considering all the tax determining factors like party, place, product and process. The tax matrix ensures all tax requirements are correctly captured and are easily understood. Based on the tax matrix, the tax rules will be configured.  The tax rules will cover branch transfers and job work (OSP) transactions.

GST Requirements impacting tax rules:

·         GST is based on supply of goods or services against the present concept of tax on the manufacture of goods or on sale of goods or on provision of services.

·         GST will be Destination based tax against the present concept of origin based tax.

·         Local Transactions - will attract Dual GST With the Centre and the States simultaneously levying it on a common base

·         Interstate Transactions - will attract Integrated GST (IGST) would be levied on inter-State supply (including stock transfers)

·         Import Transactions - will attract IGST would be treated as inter-State supplies.

There are also likely to be multiple rate based on the type of item

·         Merit Rate

·         Standard Rate

·         De-Merit Rate

·         Zero rate taxes for certain items

 

3.       Cutover

The cutover from an old solution to a new solution is likely to impact the transactions which are mid-way in the end to end process. For example a PO created under an old tax regime might have old tax related data. When an invoice is created by matching the invoice to the PO, it might result in multiple taxes - one with old tax rates, statuses and the other with new tax rates, statuses.

The Infosys solution is able to identify the potential areas of impacts and leverage pre-built solutions to quickly identify and resolve such issues.

  

4.       Business Document -

Tax related information for e.g. tax registration details are usually printed on business documents like shipping documents, bill of lading, AR Invoices, purchase orders. Considering the refund / credit balance, the GST TIN of the buyer and seller should be printed on the AR invoices. The Infosys 'tax assessment framework' specifically poses questions around the business documents and invoices numbering. This is critical and is often missed, leading to penalties and non-compliance issues.

 

5.       Reporting and Accounting

The Infosys 'Tax Assessment Framework' finally looks at the reporting and the accounting requirements.  The monthly, quarterly, yearly, ad-hoc reporting requirements are captured as part of this step. The reports used for reconciliation with the general ledger and the number of GL accounts needed for reconciliation and reporting.  Companies may want separate accounts for Input IGST, Input SGST, Input CGST, Output IGST, Output SGST and Output CGST for easy reconciliation and credit tracking.

GST Requirements on reporting:

The Model GST Law proposes following reports

Monthly

Quarterly

Annual

Others

GSTR 1- Outward supplies

GSTR 4 - Quarterly return for compounding Taxpayer

GSTR 8 - Annual Return

GSTR 5 - Periodic return by Non-Resident Foreign Taxpayer (Last day of registration)

 

GSTR 2-Inward supplies received

 

 

ITC Ledger of taxpayer(Continuous)

 

GSTR 3-Monthly return

 

 

Cash Ledger of taxpayer(Continuous)

GSTR 6 - Return for Input Service Distributor (ISD)

 

 

Tax ledger of taxpayer(Continuous)

GSTR 7 - Return for Tax Deducted at Source

 

 

 

 

GST Requirements - Credits and Refunds

This is probably the most controversial change suggested by the Model GST Law. The credit claim process has been a topics of hot discussions as it could have big impact on the cash flow and even margins of the enterprises.

Below are the details of the credit and refund process.

Tax Credits to be Utilized as below

Conditions to Claim Credit

Timelines

Input CGST to be utilized against output CGST and IGST

Possession of tax invoice

One year from the invoice date

Input SGST to be utilized against output SGST and IGST

Receipt of the goods/ service

Credit pertaining to a financial year cannot be claimed after filing the return (for September) of the next financial year or the filing of the annual return for the year to which the credit pertains - whichever is earlier

Input IGST to be utilized against output IGST, CGST and SGST in the order of IGST, CGST and SGST

Payment of tax charged on the  invoice by supplier

 

 

Filing of GST return

 

 

Match the claimed credits with the vendor tax liability. In case of a difference / discrepancy, excess credits will be disallowed to the recipient.

 

 The above requirements are likely to lead to the following systemic requirements

·         A systematic way to automatically calculate the credits

·         A systematic way to do a vendor account reconciliation

·         The need to do a vendor reconciliation will need an ability to upload the vendor data from GSTN into Oracle.

·         A form to view the GST balance and ability to write-off credits which cannot be claimed

 

Solutioning using Infosys Accelerators -

We have a pre-built repository of ready-to-deploy solutions, which will help enterprises shorten the time to solution and then to develop the solutions. The solutions cover all the areas mentioned below

S Num

Item

Infosys Accelerator

1

Master Data

Re-usable solution to enrich master data

2

Tax rules ( defaulting tax on business transactions)

GST Tax Matrix, Pre-Built GST Configuration Templates

3

Cutover Impacts

Pre-identified components and pre-built solutions to correct cutover impacts.

4

Business documents

Re-usable solution to fix business documents

5

Reporting and Accounting

Pre-built reports, solutions to meet the reporting and accounting needs.

 

Refunds and Credits:

The Infosys solution for claiming refunds and credits will require developing the following programs and solutions to track credits, perform vendor reconciliation, claim credits and write-off credits.

·         Tracking Credits - A custom form will be developed to track the GST credits.

·         Vendor Reconciliation - Two custom programs will be built

1.       A custom program will be built using API provided by GSTN, to upload supplier data.

2.       Custom program will be built to automatically list the unreconciled items with reason code e.g. Goods in transit.

·         Claim Credits - A custom program will be built to automatically claim credits as per the GST rules

·         Write-off credits - The custom form to track credits, will include the ability to write-off credits.

 

Timelines:

The Infosys solution will enable enterprises to freeze the GST solution in 5-8 weeks, leveraging the Infosys 'Tax assessment framework' and pre-built solution repository.The likely timeline for the solution will be as below.

 

 

 

 

India GST Plan.PNGIn Conclusion:

Considering time frame-work of 1-2 months for solution finalization plus implementation effort of 2-4 months, it is prudent for organizations to start the work on GST immediately, to be ready for the 01-Apr-2017 launch.

 

 

 

 

 

Roadmap to become a Digital CFO

Finance function has been constantly evolving. From being a bean counter, it has become the guardian of the shareholder value and a trusted advisor.

As the guardian of the shareholder value, it is important the function considers the impact of the happening Digital revolution on the finance function. The digital revolution is toppling leaders at a pace never seen in history.  Hence, it is critical the CFO understand the Digital revolution and what it mean for the finance function.

Digitalization is often understood in a very narrow sense as the automation of the business operation or moving away from using physical documents to digital documents. While this is correct, the Digital revolution is a much bigger exercise.

Gartner defines Digitalization as "the use of digital technologies to change a business model and provide new revenue and value-producing opportunities; it is the process of moving to a digital business".  The 'Infosys Digital' solution helps enterprises redefine consumer experiences, renew and amplify their technology core, and ensure unified orchestration and management across the digital ecosystem.

What does this mean for the finance function?

The change in business models will require the finance function to build, evaluate and guide enterprises in decision-making.  Failure to do so, will mean non-performance of the most critical function of the CFO i.e. safe guarding the shareholder value. Numerous surveys have also repeatedly called out the CFO as a major decision maker in IT investments and in big number of cases the CFO has direct responsibility of the IT function. This further strengthens the case for the CFO to understand and probably push the enterprises into the digital revolution. The digital leaders will not be able to able to increase increased revenue and margins, it will also lead to a significant reduction in cost. An Oracle-FERF survey put the cost saving as 20% of the cost base.

While the CFO office gets involved in pushing for the Digital revolution and advising on the new business models it is also necessary for the 'Finance' function to be flexible and innovative is using the digital age knowledge to reach the next level of maturity.

 What is digital finance?

 To assess the current level we should look at the four attributes of the a 'Digital Finance' function

1.       Leverage of Cloud - Strategically leverage cloud to modernize finance

2.       Leverage of Mobility - Leverage mobility to automate, speed the processes and provide real time data

3.       Leverage of Data age Big and Analytics - to improve business decisions, be able to present diagnostic, predictive and prescriptive insights.

4.       Leverage of Internet of Things, Social Media - to deliver real-time information using mobile devices and social media.

How to reach the Aspired Digital Levels?

The Process:

The 'Infosys Digital Finance Capability- Maturity Model' -helps an enterprise to assess the current 'Digital level' of its finance function. The assessment is done for the various processes within the finance function like Payables, Receivables, General Ledger etc. Next,

Digital_Fin_Process.PNG

based on the enterprise business environment the target levels will be set by the business with recommendations from Infosys. Enterprises may take a step-by-step approach to move from one level to another to ease the change management, budget availability, criticality and other business realities. Infosys will also help the enterprise set the new KPI to track the progress and assess the performance of the digitized function.

 

The Solution:

The Oracle Cloud set of solutions along with Infosys Mana solution provides numerous options to build the Digital enterprise. These solutions can be deployed on cloud.  Infosys will also help the enterprises build other solution levering the 'Infosys Digital' expertise to build solutions not covered by Oracle Cloud or Infosys Mana solutions.

Oracle Cloud:

Modern cloud applications from Oracle help you speed your digitization journey. These applications are integrated with social, mobile and possess analytic capabilities to help you deliver enhanced customer experiences.

Below are some of the Out-of-the-Box solutions offered by Oracle cloud, to speed up the Digital journey

·         Oracle Financial Consolidation and Close Cloud - built to optimize the close. Financial Consolidation and Close Cloud is designed to help minimize risk, provide transparency to the process, and accuracy to the results. Provide real-time insight and access to data with interactive process and financial dashboards.

·         Oracle Analytics Cloud delivers business analytics for traditional data and big data across the entire enterprise.

·         Account Reconciliation Cloud - helps management and improvement of global account reconciliation.

·         Accounting Hub Reporting Cloud - improves reporting by providing multi-dimensional and analytical capabilities.

·         Use Financial Reporting Compliance Cloud Service to optimize controls within and outside your financial processes using an integrated solution as part of your Oracle ERP Cloud deployment.

Infosys Mana:

Mana is a knowledge-based AI platform. It brings machine learning together with the deep knowledge of an organization to drive automation and innovation. M

Mana does Data Collection from different integrated sources by using the information platform (IIP) and relaying it for further analysis. MANA then utilizes the  'Knowledge platform' (IKP) of Mana to analyze the data and detect anomalies. Next, the Automation platform (IAP) of Mana is used for 'Automated strategy' update, Automating fixing of the upstream processes. Mana also provides numerous dashboard to view real time data showing views across regions in real time with predictive and prescriptive analytics.

Below is the how Mana solution works for business case , where the enterprise wants to improve the DSO by automatically updating the collection strategy based on statistical, text and econometric analysis of the data fed from the various application like - Cloud ERP, Credit agencies like D&B, financial information providers like Bloomberg and third party applications.

 

Mana_Process.PNGMana provides similar solution for other finance pain-points. Below is the current set of Mana finance solutions.

S Num

Mana Solution

1

Improving DSO by reducing propensity to default

2

Eliminating disputes through dynamic systemic controls model

3

Increase First Pass Match % & Exception Invoice Management

4

Re-imagining T & E process for World-Class Performance

5

T & E - Fraudulent Claim Detection Management

6

General Ledger & FPnA -  Acceleration of Close process

7

General Ledger & FPnA- Improving  Effectiveness of Balance Sheet Account Reconciliations (BSAR)

8

General Ledger & FPnA- Reducing market risk by real time monitoring of foreign exchange

 

Conclusion:

Where do you see your organization in terms of Digital maturity of the finance function? In our discussions with the finance leaders, the finance related digital work does not seem a priority item. Moreover, many CFO's also feel with the automation of the operation tasks and creation of shared services, the finance functions are now fully matured with no scope for drastic improvement.  There is also a reluctance to move decision-making tasks to machine intelligence. The CFO needs to overcome these inhibitions is using the new technologies of machine learning, robotics process automation, artificial intelligence. Leveraging the new solutions will make the decisions better, faster and also free-up the bandwidth of some of the always-in-shortage finance staff for more critical analysis needed to explore new lines of business , expand the core business. Thus, helping the CFO in guarding and enhancing the share-holder value.

 

 

 

Are you still creating quotes in Excel?

Most times, Microsoft Excel can be a perfectly convinient tool to capture details in a well-fomatted manner and macro-programmed Excel may even provide quick automation. However, is it good enough to be used as a CPQ tool?

Let us understand how Excel helps sales reps and sales managers to take quotes, in the first place.

To begin with, it is an easy option to choose when it costs less with the current volume of data and given that sales reps are well-accustomed to using it. Additionally, it provides the following perceived advantages:

  • They can save their local copies with some values prefilled, as per the products / models they sell, and use that version every time they need to create a new quote

  • They can have a local copy of the Excel sheet available on their devices, allowing them to update the quote details whenever required

  • Excel presents the least IT spend - because not many executives or specific skills are required for any system management

Though it all seems to work now, there are some challenges that keep sales teams wishing for a more streamlined CPQ (configure, quote, and price) tool in the organization. These challenges could be any or all of the following:

  • Sales reps may have multiple versions of the same quote, across multiple Excel sheets. The quotes generated may have inconsistencies and human errors - like usage of obsolete parts, misspelt attributes, and unchecked parts compatibility

  • With sales reps using their own local copies, there is no guarantee that they are using the latest versions (with updated parts and rules). This may lead to integration issues when the quote is being imported into the order management system, causing errors and failures

  • The sales manager cannot view all the quotes being worked upon by his/her team, even though individual sales reps have details of their work

  • Sales reps may face inconsistencies with Excel versions, depending on the OS in the system they use

Hence, organizations need a CPQ tool in order to achieve:

  • A streamlined quotation process

  • Quote accuracy and integrity

  • Ease of product configuration, pricing, and approvals

  • Agility and mobility

What better tool to achieve these benefits, than Oracle CPQ Cloud - one of the best tools in its class!

Oracle CPQ Cloud: Features Unexplored

Everyone knows that Oracle CPQ Cloud offers configuration (C), pricing (P), and quotation (Q) capabilities, alongside a powerful configurator, documents engine, and quote management tool for approvals, pricing, etc., like any other CPQ tool. However, does it really have anything additional?

As a matter of fact, it does. While streamlining the 'quote management' business process is the first step in the process, there are some features that present several business benefits in the long run. Here, we take take a look at some of them:

  1. Ecommerce registration

  • This feature allows resgistered as well as guest users to configure and get price for products without login. The process can be defined to either limit users to this step, or let them move ahead with a 'quick registration' option

  • If a user clicks 'register,' he is redirected to a 'quick registration' page where he can fill in his details, login, and then proceed with quote creation (commerce flow) from the product he configured earlier

  • Ecommerce registration can be enabled / disabled from the 'administration' option. The process can be set up during implementation

While large enterprises may look at integrating CPQ with their ecommerce applications, this CPQ capability (quick registration) may still suffice the needs of some. Oracle offers some standardised, basic integration with Oracle Commerce (on-premise).

2. Shopping carts
  • The 'shopping cart' can be enabled by configuring the options in 'commerce process' for CPQ Cloud application.

  • This feature provides users the flexibility to add multiple products that can be configured and added to the cart at checkout

This may be useful for users creating quotes with multiple products, as it can reduce unnecessary navigation between configuration and commerce flow for each product added.

3. Reporting manager
  • CPQ Cloud offers a reporting tool to enable reporting on commerce transactions (quotes) and quote line items

  • Reports can be arranged in folders within the 'reporting manager'

  • It provides an easy drag-and-drop interface to create the report, apply filters, add calculated columns, and more

  • Charts and graphs can be plotted dynamically

  • The 'reporting manager' has scheduling capability as well, in order to schedule reports on a regular basis

  • Reports can be sent as attachments to specified email addresses

While this has some limitations, it can serve the routine reporting requirements of sales managers.

4. Guided selling
  • A guided selling experice can be configured in CPQ using the 'search flow' / 'selector,' prior to even configuration flow

  • It can automatically select the right products based on the user's selections

This helps when the user doesn't know which product to configure and answering a few questions can direct him to the right product / model

September 16, 2016

Banks Regulatory Reporting Compliance - The Challenges and the Solution

 

Introduction

The economic stressed conditions which financial institutions have passed through, have led to increased scrutiny with stricter and more complex regulatory requirements. Regulators, besides shortening the time, have also doubled the information sought. With no compromise on data and reporting quality standards, these compliance requirements call for a cultural transformation with heavy implications for risk and finance data and technology.



Key Challenges in Regulatory Compliance


Currently most of the activities like data enrichment, lineage & reporting are handled manually and in silos, leading to an error prone and time consuming process. Other technical challenges are multiple jurisdiction regulatory requirements, huge complexity in data standardization in terms of managing the data granularity, data quality and consistency, completeness though reconciliations and adjustments and data validations. Siloes application results in inaccuracies of data aggregation and reporting and absence of integrated platform and advanced technologies worsens the situation.


Approaches to Remediation


For compliance, banks can either follow a focused approach or design an enterprise wide transformation strategy which would call for architecting data for all use cases. Some features that banks should look at when setting up an enterprise-wide framework include Integrated Platform to bring uniformity and consistency, scalable architecture, robust data quality framework to provide best in class quality checked data, strong controlled mechanism and automated flow to avoid errors of manual intervention


Continue reading " Banks Regulatory Reporting Compliance - The Challenges and the Solution " »

 

Risk-based Monitoring: A New Paradigm in Clinical Trial Monitoring

In today's competitive environment, life sciences companies are under tremendous pressure to launch drugs faster and make them cheaper, without compromising on their quality. This requires a highly efficient and robust clinical trial monitoring process, as clinical trials are key to patient safety and drug discovery. However, this is currently a very time-consuming process and at times can go on for years before the drug is certified as fit for human use. Furthermore, site monitoring by deploying people at various trial sites is a time-consuming and expensive affair.

 

Risk-based monitoring (RBM) attempts to solve some of these problems. Drug authorities across the world have now given pharma companies the flexibility to decide the level of onsite monitoring required during a clinical trial. This means that pharma companies can now optimize the trial monitoring process and monitor trials centrally by leveraging a risk-based monitoring mechanism; that is, they can build a risk profile of the sites based on critical study parameters and determine the level of monitoring required for a particular site. This can help companies save a lot of money, develop drugs faster, and keep them affordable.

 

Information technology (IT) plays a pivotal role in supporting this process. Given the latest tools and techniques, it is very easy for pharma companies to sift through a lot of structured and unstructured data that can impact the trial process. With the usage of statistical modeling and machine learning techniques, it is now very easy to predict the risk quotient of a site where a trial will be conducted and thus decide the level of monitoring required.View image 

 

Infosys has built a risk-based monitoring solution using Oracle technologies that integrates with your existing data sources and applications to provide the desired outcome. It provides better returns to the clients, already using Oracle products, as they do not need to invest in product licenses.

 

Visit us at Oracle OpenWorld 2016 to know more about this solution.

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