By Pascal Ballayer, Portugal’s CFOs Association President, and Pascal Adriao, CEO K1 Digital and past MD Accenture

From IAFEI October 2020 Quarterly report

The prestigious technology innovators magazine have just published the list of the top 50 CEOs worldwide in the field of artificial intelligence.

How is AI useful for finance and administration executives?

AI is fueling innovation across industries and has been making major steps in the fast paced world of finance and accounting, helping CFO’s and their finance teams optimize their organisations with gnu augmented capabilities, sharper and timely insights, value data backed decisions, and reduced business risk and costs.

How can augmented intelligent platforms and products help to address the top finance and accounting issues and where do they present their greatest benefits?

I will develop four issues solved by our AI platforms:

1.Uncovering patterns to produce predictions. Today, AI can review large datasets, uncovered patterns not recognized before with traditional statistic models, predict with great efficiency, supported by new augmented intelligence products able to deliver real business results, competitive advantage, and customer satisfaction. With more accurate forecasts, finance and accounting teams can better guide the business and reduce operational and capital expenditures, going far more than traditional financial reporting and adding critical value to the business.

Enabled with these AI assets, they can refocus their efforts on the analysis and alignment of finance functions like reporting, KPIs, goals an ongoing day-to-day executions with the overall business strategy and dedicate more of their time and resources on value added tasks. AI powered prescriptive EXFOR engines can spot patterns and make predictions and recommendations allowing finance teams to address strategic business questions. With AI, CFO’s support their companies’ acceleration and secure continued growth.

  1. Semi structured and unstructured data processing (Easydata): Performing document validations and exceptions processing in accounts payable (eg. invoices). while simple automation can easily take care of documents reading and matching, it will not resolve exceptions. In these cases, you will need an intelligent multi-dimensional matching platform. EasyData Platforms automatically process, collect data and reconcile a large volume of documents and exceptions, including claims [to recover revenues] or through the pattern identification and intelligence, helps the team to get more effective in conducting contract negotiations with suppliers and third parties.
  2. Smart Reporting: Transforming the traditional financial closed process: instead of spending hours fighting to get the necessary reporting data at the end of each period, finance and administration teams can have access to real time data for decision-making and period closing, getting critical time for analysis and problem solving activities.

Smart reporting allows finance teams and CFO’s the ability to solve more complex problems and uncover opportunities for their companies.

Bringing finance and admin process is up to speed to support business growth: K1 Digital evaluated existing finance operations for a set of important players of several industries and looked for the best opportunities for significant improvements supported by technology and Lean methodology. from this analysis, nearly 20 automated solutions addressing reporting, order to cash, record to report, and procure to pay process is were built, addressing the needs of high volume of data, rule based activities and the elimination of manual work usually involved in the set of companies selected. K1 Digital Combined optical character recognition and our patent recognition platform (EasyData) to process semi structured and unstructured data. With these intelligent solutions processing repetitive finance and accounting tasks, organisations will also remove nearly 100% of errors caused by manual processing. The set of major benefits among others are:

  • A 45% boost in end to end productivity
  • Forecast accuracy and savings of 30% plus
  • 24/7 finance and accounting service availability with the automated help desk (intelligent chatbot)
  • zero document duplication and backlog clearing
  • Invoice processing TMO reduction of 60% plus and accuracy 45% plus
  • Improving payment on time with important financial benefits
  • Accelerating supplier on boarding time by 80%
  • Getting purchase orders approved 50% faster
  • Improving PO matching by 60% plus.

Would you say that CFO’s will deliver a faster response to emerging business needs and generate valuable foresight to improve decision-making?

For sure, since 2017, K1 Digital invested more than 25,000 hours in R&D to create our proprietary ready to use and scale artificial intelligence platforms that respond to strategic and operational challenges of organisations operating in the markets with the most weight in the world economy. Adopting our AI platforms that respond to strategic and operational challenges of organisations operating in the markets with the most weight in the world economy. Adopting our AI platforms, especially essential in unstable market conditions, combining finance based practices with intelligent technologies – such as cloud based platforms, AI and automation – to make operations more flexible and agile, improving working capital, delivering accurate forecasts, and reducing operating costs. It also helps finance organisations to standardize an automate time consuming, repetitive manual process is.

Thanks a lot for helping us to digitalise businesses and the financial function. I guess you are also looking for investors to boost your development.

Yes, upgrading infrastructures around digital an innovation is now urgent and critical for companies continuity which makes our activity field extremely attractive for venture capital companies and, looking ahead, this will also foster our international expansion.

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