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Data Strategy

Single Source of Truth: A Must-Have for CFOs

Heather Holst-Knudsen
May 22, 2023

Discover the benefits of implementing a Single Source of Truth (SSOT) for your data in information, media, and event businesses. Improve data quality, save time and money, and make more accurate data-driven decisions with this unified data architecture and system of management.

As a senior finance executive, you’re being tasked with finding ways to accelerate growth and increase profits, and a better understanding of data points like cost efficiency and customer acquisition costs are integral to that goal. This is particularly true in information, media, and event businesses - and at marketing service providers that serve them - because data is the lifeblood of your business. 

However, in our recent survey of over 100 leaders in the industry, we found that less than ½ of all senior executives have high confidence in the trustworthiness of their company’s data. ⅔ of these executives included CEOs and CFOS. If you and your CEO do not have high confidence in your data, then there is a fundamental issue to tackle. 

76% of CFOs agree that objectives cannot be met without "one version of the truth."

It begins with a Single Source of Truth for your data (SSOT).

According to Accenture, 76% of CFOs agree that their organization will struggle to meet objectives without one version of the truth across business units.

What is an SSOT, exactly? It is a trusted, unified data architecture and system of management that supports comprehensive, automated financial reporting. It gives finance leaders a place to manage pro forma analysis. Through it, users can clearly see what data has changed, how it was changed, and who made it. Having an SSOT means no longer needing multiple parties to review and validate data sets each time a report needs to be published or shared. Instead, users can feel confident about the integrity of their data, with the information automatically pre-verified.

The Benefits of SSOT for CFOs and Other leaders

  • Improve data quality and integrity. Minimize human error.
  • Save money. Our internal analysis indicates that if organizations optimized data across functions, they could save $250,000 or more in operating expenses annually, through a reduction of resource time expended and the removal of redundant and underutilized systems.
  • Save time.. Data is difficult to manage when it is spread across various systems. Managing decentralized data in silos forces staff to devote significant time to data preparation activities. According to a CrowdFlower survey, data analysts spend 19 percent of their time collecting data and an additional 60 percent of their time cleaning and organizing the dataset
  • Improve accuracy of forecasting. Enough said.
  • More visibility to make data-driven decisions and add value. When you lack visibility due to data issues, it can limit your ability to see the complete picture of your company’s revenue, sales pipeline, marketing conversion rates, and more. This limited field of vision hurts your ability to add value. A recent report by Accenture found that 81 percent of all CFOs see identifying and targeting areas of new value across the business as one of their main responsibilities.

One example of data-driven decisions from an SSOT is improving your unit economics to improve profitability. Over 8 in 10 leaders at Information, Media and Event companies believe that challenges with improving unit economics based on analytics will have a significant or very significant impact on growth. The inability to get the data house in order is affecting your growth.  You need to synthesize customer data, program data, financial data and other info from disparate sources to do it effectively. Again, it is challenging but very doable, with the right data strategy and platforms. Naturally, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention Insightify, a data platform specifically designed to meet these and other needs for executives in our industry.

CFOs are Leading the way and Our Roadmap Can Help

In order to minimize the challenges of data management and give CFOs and finance teams access to reliable intelligence, many organizations are moving toward a single source of truth. Increasingly, CFOs are becoming more influential in getting there.

What’s the best path?

Download our E-Book:  Achieving a Single Source of Truth: A New Standard for CFOs and Finance Teams.

We’ll take you through what’s involved in the process, drawing from our 30 years of experience with data strategy and data-driven growth in the industry.

Need help?

H2K Labs has developed a data-first, modular, continuous improvement framework to help customers make revenue a core business process and a center of operational excellence. 

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