Financial Planning and Analysis

A new role for financial planning and analysis

During the global COVID-19 pandemic, companies have been relying heavily on their financial planning and analysis (FP&A) teams to help keep up with rapidly changing conditions. A transition to a more integrated and collaborative FP&A service delivery model has been in the works for years, and the pandemic has accelerated the need for financial planning and analysis professionals to work more closely with their business counterparts as strategic advisors in the business. However, many of today’s FP&A organizations are not where they need to be to play this role.

The Hackett Group® can help. As a leading global strategy and operations consulting firm, The Hackett Group provides benchmarking, best practices and executive advisory programs to help FP&A improve analytics and modeling capabilities, align skills with talent needs, and implement required technologies to become a strategic advisor to the business.

A new FP&A operating model

To navigate a post-pandemic economy, businesses need a next-generation financial planning and analysis organization. The unparalleled level of business and economic disruption, along with accelerated digital transformation, has made FP&A functions critical to overall business planning. Business leaders and senior management need help from FP&A organizations to understand current performance, dig into root causes, keep pace with fast-changing conditions, and make more informed decisions on how to transition the business to the next normal.

To fulfill this role, financial planning and analysis teams require a new operating model, moving away from the traditional accounting mindset. Staff and management accountants must develop new skills, adopt new technologies and embrace new engagement models with their business counterparts. Most importantly, FP&A teams must adapt by becoming more agile.

Transforming financial planning and analysis with The Hackett Group

The Hackett Group is an intellectual property-based strategic consultancy, offering digital transformation services and enterprise benchmarking to global companies. Drawing from unparalleled IP from more than 26,000 benchmark studies with the world’s leading businesses, we accelerate the implementation of best practices and provide dedicated expertise in business strategy, integrated business planning, operations, business partnering, finance, human capital management, strategic sourcing, and other areas of business.

To help financial planning and analysis organizations become strategic advisors to the business, we work with teams to achieve four key objectives:

  • Gain a permanent seat at the decision-making table, serving as prime leaders of business enablement when making investment decisions, selecting projects and planning head count.
  • Expand the delivery scope of analytics to all functions and business units, becoming the analytics hub of the organization.
  • Standardize and automate much of the repetitive reporting activity and first-line analytics, migrating many of those activities to shared services centers (SSCs).
  • Provide self-service analytics tools to business users so they can secure quick answers to their most pressing business questions.

Critical areas of development

To play a major role in enabling finance to realize its top objectives, financial planning and analysis organizations must:

  • Move beyond the traditional reporting mindset to support top-line growth and informed decision-making with timely and relevant insight and foresight.
  • Act as an independent voice by challenging long-held assumptions.
  • Find innovative ways to solve business problems.
  • Improve analytics by establishing a robust data management platform with clearly defined governance rules.
  • Upskill staff to become fluent in advanced analytics methodologies and modeling techniques.
  • Enhance finance agility by migrating data into a single repository and democratizing access, allowing different parts of the organization to pull real-time, quality information.
  • Push more analytics capabilities closer to the business by deploying self-service tools.
  • Integrate planning processes by reviewing disparate planning activities throughout the company, coordinating planning events and orchestrating the information value chain.
  • Transition EPM activities to the cloud, enabling remote work and better access to advanced functionality.

Why customers choose The Hackett Group

Founded in 1997, The Hackett Group is an intellectual property-based strategic consultancy that is publicly traded on the NASDAQ as HCKT. As a leading benchmarking firm to global companies, The Hackett Group enables digital transformation through implementation of leading enterprise cloud services and applications, workflow automation, and analytics that enable world-class performance.

Our consulting and advising services are based on insights drawn from more than 26,600 benchmark studies with the world’s leading businesses, including 97% of the Dow Jones Industrials, 89% of the Fortune 100, 70% of the DAX 40 and 55% of the FTSE 100.

In addition to services in a range of areas – including order-to-cash optimization, reduction of SG&A expenses and consulting on zero-based budgeting – we offer programs that include:

  • Quantum Leap®, a platform that automates data collection and significantly reduces the effort required for benchmarking
  • Hackett-Certified® Best Practices, a collection of proven, repeatable, documented techniques that deliver measurable improvements in business performance management
  • Digital Transformation Platform, a solution that aligns cloud functionality with best practices and configuration guidance
  • The Hackett Institute, offering professional development and certification programs
  • Best Practices Intelligence Center™, the world’s largest searchable online repository of empirically proven business best practices, performance metrics, implementation tools and associated research


What is financial planning and analysis?

Financial planning and analysis (FP&A) comprises four areas of activity: integrated financial planning, planning and budgeting, management and performance reporting, and forecasting and modeling.

What is the value of financial planning and analysis?

FP&A teams support the business plan and establish a process for ensuring that the business’s objectives are achievable from a financial standpoint. Finance planning and analysis provides projections for how well the business will perform and measures success/projections.

What is The Hackett Group?

The Hackett Group is an intellectual property-based strategic consultancy and leading enterprise benchmarking firm offering best practices digital transformation for global companies. Services include business transformation, enterprise analytics, working capital management and global business services.