Reimagining the digitized accounting and finance department

By Mr. Toshihide Otani, Director of ABeam Consulting (Thailand) Ltd.

Reimagining the digitized accounting and finance department

In business, financial risk management is an ongoing consideration in normal business conditions. From monitoring several interdependent macroeconomic risks, such as exchange rates, interest rates and inflation, to accounting for more recent additions to the economic dashboard like environment, sustainability, and governance (ESG) goals. Even at the best of times setting a comprehensive risk management strategy is a mammoth task for the Chief Financial Officer (CFO).

Add a global pandemic into the mix and the uncertainty it brings with it, you can imagine the difficulties accounting and finance teams face when managing and operating critical day-to-day financial management and controls. Taking a long-term view becomes increasingly difficult and become a huge challenge for CFO’s, whichever size or type of operation they are operating in. 

Getting a clear view of the financial position of the company is critical in order to support all business activities. But in such a fast-changing world, how is it possible to get accurate, real-time and actionable information when it is needed?

Over the last 10 years many companies have brought more technology to the accounting and finance department and adopted a digital approach, but that in itself is not the answer.
To truly transform how you operate the way we work needs to be rethought to ensure the technology serves the right purpose. 

The big change over the last two years is that digital adoption has accelerated, and this makes it even more important to make sure the right areas are targeted for change, so that they serve the needs of management and executives by provide the right information in the right form, so they are able to see financial data as an insightful and informative tool for decision making.

Reimagining the digitized accounting and finance department

Getting your digital transformation right is more challenging. At ABeam Consulting we have identified three important areas for consideration in 2022 and beyond.

1. Transform labor from human to digital, especially for routine processes

There are many tasks in accounting and finance work that can be labor intensive, but they can be predictable and, at times, repetitive. Identifying which tasks have a common routine workflow and can be managed and analyzed by Artificial Intelligence (AI) can accelerate meaningful digital transformation while also letting the organization free up time for accounting and finance teams to carry out other work.

Using Robotics Process Automation (RPA) processes can be set-up for Smart Accounts Payable, e-signatures and Billing Process Automation enabling the organization to save time and reduce costs, and AI can replace the bulk of the task allowing human interaction to authenticate and approve the final work.

The merging use of technology and accounting is increasing every day and business leaders need to stay ahead of this change and understand that technology is quickly changing the way accounting functions within an organization. 

2. Integrate digital solutions to make financial data more accessible

Not all management teams have a finance background, but they need to understand their financial performance to be able to make better plans and better decisions. Accounting and finance teams now have access to the digital tools they need to be able to share real-time financial data in a meaningful way to other departments.

Now is the time to move away from traditional tables and graphs and spread sheets and embrace data visualization as a better way of presenting information. This will help business leaders from all departments get a clearer understanding of financial performance, whether its production, marketing, IT or the CEO themselves.

Now complex financial data for ERP, Enhanced Cash Management & Analysis, and others can now be shown in real-time as a dashboard, and this will help improve understanding and decision making.

3. Quantifying the intangibles

An increasing number of companies are now investing in apparently less tangible financial outcomes as commitments to Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) goals, and this provides a challenge for CFOs. ESG metrics are not commonly part of mandatory financial reporting, though companies are increasingly making disclosures in their annual report or in a standalone sustainability report, but how can this investment be measured?

Whether it’s corporate social responsibility programs, aiming for zero carbon output, or any other similar activities they often don’t directly relate to company profit, but they do need to show their value. This is especially true for companies looking for new funding, as investors are increasingly applying these non-financial factors as part of their analysis process to identify material risks and growth opportunities.

Technology is now available to help companies measure their efforts. For example, Connected Enterprise® Digital ESG can help collect, assess and quantify disconnected ESG information and present it in a form that shows ROI and tracks performance on an on-going basis.

Quantifying the intangibles

Assessing options to enhance your functions

Enhancing your accounting and finance functions is one of the critical steps when planning your Digital Transformation Roadmap. Importantly, when making the right decisions when re-structuring or re-designing the accounting and finance function with appropriate digital solutions, the best approach is to do a Business Process Reengineering (BPR) to identify pain points, bottle necks, and areas of value proposition to the company.  

This BPR and subsequent digital transformation activity can result in a variety of time-and-cost saving solutions, reduce workload and make current operations more efficient so accounting and finance staff can move to more valuable tasks for the department.

Ensuring your CFO clearly understands the implications of any digital transformation should be paramount, as this will help change their role from being a provider of financial reports into a trusted advisor to the CEO and executive management, with a clear understanding of the company’s strategy and goals.

About ABeam Consulting (Thailand) Ltd.

ABeam Consulting (Thailand) Ltd. is a subsidiary of ABeam Consulting Ltd. – headquartered in Tokyo having 6,600 people serve more than 1,100 clients throughout Asia, the Americas and Europe providing consulting services in Thailand since 2005, ABeam Consulting (Thailand) has more than 400 professionals serving more than 200 clients in Thailand with expertise in business and digital transformation services that create strategic advantage, improve business processes, leverage technology innovation and enhance organizational performance. 

Please contact us at or visit for more details.

Japanese version is as follows.







この10数年にわたり、多くの企業がERP(Enterprise Resources Planning)システムを採用し導入してきたが、それ自体は必ずしも企業の財務・会計リスク低減に対する解決策とは言えない。経理・財務事業部門運営における真の変革、言い換えれば経理・財務部門による適切な財務・会計リスク管理を実現するためには、経理・財務部門が担う機能・人財の再定義、及びそれを支えるシステムの見直しが必要となる。




​​​​​​​1. ルーティン業務のデジタル化




2. 経理・財務データの可視化・経営判断への有効利用




3. 見えない企業価値(非財務情報)の可視化



例えば、当社が提供するConnected Enterprise® Digital ESGを活用して、散在している製造ラインからの環境コスト情報や社内の人的資本の労働環境情報といった様々なESG関連情報を収集、評価、定量化し、投資利益率(ROI)を示すことで、投資家は企業のESGに対するパフォーマンスを継続的に追跡することができる。






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