2024 Finance Software Selection: a CFO’s roadmap to avoiding 10 costly mistakes

2024 Finance Software Selection: a CFO’s roadmap to avoiding 10 costly mistakes

As a CFO or financial leader, it's crucial to navigate the selection process of a robust finance management software with a clear understanding of your organisation's specific goals, business needs, and potential challenges. But there are so many other aspects to keep in mind.

To help you steer clear of common mistakes, we've highlighted 10 key areas to consider when selecting an Enterprise Resource Planning system (ERP). 


In today's dynamic business environment, effective financial management is paramount to driving organisational success. However, the selection of a robust finance management software can be a daunting task, often fraught with potential pitfalls. 

Starting with the less critical considerations when researching an ERP for your organisation, and gradually progressing to the most pressing, we'll provide insights into why these pitfalls should be avoided and how Sage Intacct, coupled with BDO's expertise, can help you make informed decisions.

Consideration #1: Craft clear objectives specific to your business needs

Without a defined set of objectives and a deep understanding of your organisation's unique requirements, you risk selecting a finance management system that doesn't align with your strategic goals or address your specific needs. This can lead to a system that doesn't fit your business processes, lacks the necessary features, and hinders your ability to achieve financial excellence.


Before embarking on your finance technology search, take the time to clearly define your organisation's financial objectives, operational needs, and pain points. This will help you narrow down your options and identify the system that best meets your unique requirements. 

Sage Intacct's versatility ensures that it can be tailored to meet a wide range of organisational objectives, from growing startups to established enterprises. Our team will ensure that the customisation process aligns seamlessly with your specific business processes and industry best practices so that your software meets your unique needs and exceeds your expectations.


Consideration #2: Prioritise customisation and scalability features

As your organisation grows, your financial needs evolve. A finance management software that doesn't scale with your growth can become a bottleneck, hindering your ability to adapt and expand. Ignoring the importance of scalability can result in future challenges, requiring costly transitions and adjustments.


Prioritise scalability when selecting your finance technology. Consider how your organisation's financial needs are likely to change in the future and choose a system that can accommodate these changes without becoming a burden. 

Sage Intacct is a highly scalable software that can seamlessly grow alongside your organisation's needs. Its scalability ensures that your finance solution can seamlessly grow alongside your organisation. 


Consideration #3: Emphasise meticulous data migration planning

Overlooking the complexities of data migration can result in the loss or corruption of historical financial data during the transition to a new system. This can lead to inaccurate reporting, compliance issues, and operational disruptions. The impact of this is significant, as inaccurate financial data can compromise decision-making, hinder regulatory compliance, and erode trust in financial reporting.


Prioritise a meticulous data migration plan, ensuring a comprehensive understanding of existing data structures, formats, and dependencies. Engage a reputable data migration partner to ensure a smooth and accurate transition of your financial data. Consider factors such as data volume, data format compatibility, and existing data security protocols when selecting your migration partner. 

Sage Intacct provides robust data migration tools and support to help minimise the risk of data loss or corruption and ensure a smooth transition. Its data import functionalities and mapping capabilities streamline the process, minimising the risk of data inaccuracies.


Consideration #4: Invest in comprehensive team training

Inadequate training for your finance team can hinder their ability to fully utilise the software's capabilities, ultimately slowing down your organisation's adoption and implementation process.


Invest in comprehensive training for your finance team to ensure they are comfortable using the new finance technology. Before deciding on software, investigate what is their approach to training – some hand you a PDF, others go all the way. Consider hands-on training sessions in real-life scenarios and ongoing support to help your team maximise the software's potential. 


Consideration #5: Recognise the significance of a smooth implementation by an experienced vendor

A smooth implementation process is crucial for a successful software rollout. Underestimating the complexities of implementation can lead to disruptions in daily operations, hindering your team's productivity and ultimately delaying the realisation of the software's benefits.


Partner with a reputable finance technology implementation partner to ensure a seamless transition to your chosen system. Choose a partner with a proven track record of implementing Sage Intacct across various industries and business sizes. It’s important to also ensure they are capable of integrating Sage Intacct within your existing infrastructure if that’s what you need. 

BDO's implementation expertise ensures a seamless transition to Sage Intacct. Our meticulous understanding of your business processes and deep knowledge of Sage Intacct's features will minimise downtime and allow your team to adapt quickly. Our team’s expertise not only mitigates complexities, but also ensures that the transition is swift and hassle-free.

Contact our team today for seamless implementation and integration of your chosen ERP and finance management software.

Consideration #6: Foster a culture of collaboration

Finance plays a pivotal role in driving overall organisational success. Collaborative aspects within the finance team and with other departments are crucial for streamlined operations and informed decision-making. Neglecting collaboration can hinder communication, slow down processes, and lead to suboptimal outcomes.


Leverage the collaboration features of your chosen finance technology to break down silos and foster a culture of shared insights. Encourage regular communication and knowledge sharing between the finance team and other departments to optimise decision-making and streamline operations. On the same note as sharing access to information, it’s important to also have the option to deny/ restrict user access to some features of the software platform. By ensuring that user restrictions are in place, you can add another security layer to your financial data. 


Consideration #7: Leverage Real-time data and visibility capabilities

In today's fast-paced business environment, real-time visibility into financial data is crucial for making informed decisions and responding to market trends promptly. Relying on outdated or manual reporting systems can hinder your organisation's agility and competitive edge.


Choose a finance technology that provides real-time data access and insights. This will enable you to monitor your financial performance closely, identify trends early on, and make proactive adjustments to maintain a competitive edge. Sage Intacct offers real-time data reporting and dashboards, allowing you to stay up-to-date on your financial health and make informed decisions in real time.


Consideration #8: Prioritise Cloud-based Accessibility

In today's dynamic business environment, flexibility and mobility are paramount. A cloud-based finance management system ensures that your team can access critical data securely from anywhere.


Opt for a cloud-based finance technology that provides your team with real-time data access and seamless collaboration capabilities. This will allow your team to stay productive and agile, regardless of their location or device. Sage Intacct is a cloud-based software that provides your team with secure access to financial data from anywhere in the world. This accessibility not only enhances productivity but also future-proofs your financial operations.

Additionally, ensure that your implementation partners have the expertise to carry out a secure and efficient transition to the cloud. This will eliminate the risk of data errors and downtime, allowing your team to focus on strategic financial activities while they manage the implementation.


Consideration #9: Plan for ongoing maintenance and support costs

Financial management software is not a one-time purchase; it requires ongoing maintenance and support to ensure it remains up-to-date, secure, and functioning effectively. Neglecting to factor in these ongoing costs can lead to unexpected financial strain and hinder your organisation's ability to fully utilise the software's potential.


Choose a finance technology provider that offers comprehensive ongoing maintenance and support services. This will help you avoid unexpected costs and ensure your software is always up-to-date and functioning optimally. Sage Intacct offers a range of maintenance and support options to suit your organisation's needs.

In some cases, your implementation partner’s expertise extends beyond the initial implementation phase, encompassing ongoing support and maintenance services. Our team, for example, monitors the implemented Sage Intacct system, addresses any technical issues, and ensures that you receive the necessary guidance to maximise the software's capabilities. This proactive approach helps prevent disruptions and ensures your organisation achieves the full value of its investment.

Consideration #10: Strengthen security measures 

In an era of increasing cyber threats, security is paramount in financial management. Overlooking security measures can expose your organisation to significant risks, including data breaches, financial losses, and reputational damage.


Prioritize security when selecting your finance technology. Choose a system that incorporates robust security features, such as data encryption, multi-factor authentication, and intrusion detection systems. Sage Intacct incorporates cutting-edge security measures, including vulnerability and threat management scans, internal vulnerability assessments, and business continuity and disaster recovery plans. 

At BDO, our implementation ensures strict adherence to these and other security protocols, providing an extra layer of protection for your organisation. Additionally, our cybersecurity team is part of one of only 5 global organisations to implement Palo Alto's AI-based continuous security operations platform, CORTEX XDR. This additional service exemplifies the dedication and expertise our BDO teams bring to safeguarding your organisation's financial data.

Partner with BDO and Sage Intacct to ensure your financial management system is robust and secure against cyber threats.


In the ever-evolving finance landscape, ignoring the impact of software on time, team productivity, and ease of use can hinder operational efficiency. A complex software can lead to increased training costs, reduced productivity, and frustration among team members.

BDO prioritises technology ease of use, collaborating with you to implement Sage Intacct, reducing cycle times, and enhancing financial reporting. The cloud-based nature of Sage Intacct ensures flexibility, optimising team productivity and enabling your finance team to focus on strategic initiatives rather than managing complex software implementation.


Partnering with BDO for a Smooth and Successful Software Rollout


By avoiding these common pitfalls and partnering with BDO and Sage Intacct, you can ensure you’re selecting the right ERP solution and finance management software that aligns with your unique needs and strategic objectives.

With BDO's extensive expertise and proven track record in implementing Sage Intacct, you can navigate the labyrinth of financial management software with confidence. At BDO, our team of experts will guide you through every step of the process, from defining your objectives to training your team and ensuring a seamless transition to Sage Intacct.


Embrace the Future of Finance with Sage Intacct and BDO


By partnering with BDO and Sage Intacct, you can empower your finance team with the tools and insights they need to drive your organisation's success. Sage Intacct's powerful capabilities, coupled with BDO's expertise and commitment to excellence, will help you achieve your financial objectives and navigate the ever-changing business landscape with agility and confidence.

Contact our expert today to discuss the best ERP and finance management software for your business to help you achieve your strategic goals.

Conor MacManus

Conor MacManus

Director of Technology Consulting, BDO Eaton Square, BDO Dublin
personView bio