Today’s finance teams are challenged to achieve greater agility amidst the ever-changing business landscape heightened by the pandemic. Real-time data and insights are key to agility, yet many finance organizations have disconnected data sources and legacy accounting systems which can no longer keep pace in today’s changing world. Valuable time is spent collecting, reconciling, and validating data instead of delivering trusted insights to the organization. To address these critical challenges, Workday continues to advance its cloud planning and financial management solutions with ML and data management capabilities.
Workday Accounting Center
Workday is trying to solve a problem that has plagued the ERP industry for decades – keeping up with the ever-increasing volume of operational data and turning it into accounting and insight faster and more efficiently. Now commercially available, with early adopters such as CNA and Shelter Insurance currently in production, Workday Accounting Center represents a fundamental change in the way finance manages operational data.
Workday Accounting Center enables customers to ingest operational data, enrich it with meaningful attributes, and transform it into accounting. This allows customers to manage operational and financial data from multiple sources with a single point of control across the enterprise.
For example, with Workday Accounting Center, an insurance company is able to load its operational transactions – such as claims or policy data – into the system, create accounting (journal) entries for those transactions, and then report and analyze on those transactions with full drill down and visibility into the source transactions, which is called data lineage.
Machine learning for Workday Adaptive Planning
Planning has become even more critical for organizations managing through the pandemic. To enable forecasting with greater accuracy, Workday continues to evolve its intelligent planning capabilities, which allow planning without limits and anticipate what’s next with greater accuracy and confidence, harnessing ML at the core.
Using time series prediction – the process of modeling events over a period of time to make more accurate predictions – Workday applies the power of ML to enable predictive analytics with Workday Adaptive Planning. The ML algorithms use historical and current data to predict likely outcomes for revenue, expenses, and other critical business variables creating a predictive forecast. Predictive forecasts are created based on thousands or even hundreds of thousands of data points aggregated from across the enterprise, including sales, HR, marketing, and manufacturing data, for example. Using anomaly detection in Workday Adaptive Planning, anomalies are identified and automatically flag a planner about a potential issue. New reporting capabilities make it easy to compare an ML-driven forecast against a planner’s forecast to detect potential problems before either forecast is acted on, so organizations can make better decisions with confidence.
The latest release from Workday also includes key advances for customers in the office of the CFO focused on enabling deeper insight and accountability for performance. Notable advancements include:
- Embedded ad-hoc analysis on real-time data. With Discovery Boards, accounting and finance teams are able to see and analyze data in real time on live Workday transactions – all in one system. With access to nearly 200 data sources across core financial management and spend management, customers can easily and securely perform ad-hoc analysis with an embedded drag-and-drop visualization tool.
- Unified planning and execution. Workday customers can now publish plans from Workday Adaptive Planning directly to Workday Financial Management and vice versa, making it easy to compare actuals to plans in the same system, streamlining finance processes.