Often, when we talk about the implementation of IT tools and applications for finance, we use terms borrowed from the lexicon of architecture. For instance, phrases such as “infrastructure design,” “interface design,” “user experience,” or “database architecture” all have roots in architectural design.
Designing a building and designing an IT system have far more in common than might appear at first glance. Both activities carry great responsibilityand imply the creation of an object (tangible in the one case, intangible in the other) that will be used by hundreds of people in order to meet their own needs. Additionally, both activities should be carried out flawlessly, by leveraging all available knowledge and technology and involving specialized professionals who can best understand the needs of their respective audiences.
magine you’ve gone back in time – to 1512 in Rome. More specifically, you’re standing in the Sistine Chapel, watching the famous artist Michelangelo complete what will become known as “one of the absolute masterpieces of the Western art”.
Michelangelo has been working on the 500-square-meter painting for approximately four years. The work is painstaking and physically challenging. But finally, he is almost finished. You watch as he puts the final touches on an angel wing.
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‘Don’t get set into one form, adapt it and build your own, and let it grow, be like water.
You must be shapeless, formless, like water.
When you pour water in a cup, it becomes the cup. When you pour water in a bottle, it becomes the bottle.
When you pour water in a teapot, it becomes the teapot.
Water can drip and it can crash.
Become like water my friend.’
These Bruce Lee’s words have inspired and continue to inspire many martial artists. This concept has its origin in the Taoist philosophy and can be applied to many everyday life situations.
Corporate Performance Management systems have reached a truly remarkable and complex stage of development. Once relegated to the preparation of consolidated financial statements (very often for compliance purposes), a well-implemented CPM today is now able to manage planning and control processes, interact with business intelligence systems, and manage aspects of Corporate Social Responsibility and Governance, Risk Management and Compliance (GRC), covering a flow of information that ranges from data collection to final reporting for internal and external stakeholders.
All these processes and actors (with as many needs) are involved in the operation of a single system, generating a complexity that somehow has to be managed.
Unlike Mr. Gignac, who has been capable of assembling trash in a fascinating way, by putting it into a cube gives a consistent vision to an apparently chaotic set, financial data (as well as many other things in our ordinary life) work in a completely different way. Continue reading “TRASH-IN TRASH-OUT (PART I)”