3 Strategies for Rapid, Low-risk Change in Finance
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3 Strategies for Rapid, Low-risk Change in Finance: Break Free from your Tech

With every finance organisation at a different stage of digital evolvement and innovation coming to the fore every month, there’s no static change roadmap to follow.

Digital disruption is everywhere. In your customers’ businesses, your organisation and the wider economy. Although finance is no stranger to game-changing technology adoption, it faces pressure to rival any sector.

As such, leaders are prioritising low-risk IT change to remain agile, competitive and relevant as business needs grow and infrastructure dramatically shifts. 

However, with every finance organisation at a different stage of digital evolvement and innovation coming to the fore every month, there’s no static change roadmap to follow.

Not having a blueprint can be daunting, but it’s also an opportunity to think outside the box, investigating how to achieve rapid, low-risk IT change without reinventing the wheel. Here, we share three practical strategies for change that deliver significant impact without worry.


Imagine this – automation has all but concluded traditional, time-hungry finance processes. Unified Business Intelligence is getting decisions made at lightspeed and you’re servicing more clients in record time, thanks to your revamped app.

Everything is going perfectly to plan. That is, until the Head of Compliance calls you out of the blue, reporting that customers are receiving incorrect documentation after updating their online accounts. It’s a major problem.

You don’t understand how this could have happened. The AI and BI applications that expedite customer admin processes haven’t experienced downtime, and internal users haven’t encountered problems.

After investigation, it emerges that the databases powering your AI and BI tools are poorly optimised for their workloads. Slight performance lags caused delays in data communication, resulting in incorrect, sensitive information shared without authorisation – and a small pool of seriously unhappy customers.

It’s too risky to rip databases apart and start over, but action clearly must be taken.

databases: how to achieve low-risk it change

A practical steppingstone to full-scale Intelligent Data transformation is to rethink how you manage databases. Database Managed Services are an ideal option for delivering improvement fast while you work toward consolidating data and overhauling insights.

  • Managed Database Services ensure that databases are optimised, configured to your organisation’s best practices and continuously fine-tuned to cope with the expanding volume and variety of financial operations data.
  • These services can be staggered with your required speed of development Current database investment is evaluated and improved upon immediately alongside developing a long-term strategy.
  • Hybrid platform and multi-cloud options can be fully harnessed to maximise the value opportunity whilst mitigating the challenges associated with retaining this breadth of technical skills within an internal team.
  • Advanced technology such as predictive analytics detect patterns and generate insights to enable a more efficient, more effective use of databases.
  • Agile and proactive management allows for quick pivots, meaning finance leaders and application owners can adapt quickly using the technology they already have.

Database management is full-time, so trust experts to do it for you. Read more about Node4’s Intelligent Data Solutions here.


Let’s say that it’s a year from now – you’ve adopted Machine Learning to customise client product offers, use predictive analytics to refine scenario planning, launched an app to speed up customer payment cycles and scaled the whole thing by 50%.

You realise you’ve achieved all this digital evolution without worrying or wrestling with your IT. If we told you this was your future today, do you think you’d believe us? If we told you this was possible, would you believe us?

But with the public cloud in your corner, this future is very much a reality. Once a black sheep but a critical facet of the reimagined financial organisation, public cloud infrastructure can transform how low-risk, high-impact change is delivered.

When managed, secured, integrated and connected by an accredited Managed Service Provider, compliance and data protection risk with a public cloud is exceptionally low. Public clouds like Azure have unrivalled security credentials. As such, finance leaders are turning to public clouds to:

  • Reduce operational expenditure and overall costs
  • Adopt and scale new technologies that enable organisational and customer innovation
  • Easily facilitate new necessities such as compliance measures and analytics
  • Pursue more frequent change cycles by using public cloud scalability
  • Experiment with new technologies and products in a safe environment

The above benefits make it clear that for finance leaders, public cloud is synonymous with secure, stable and effective business change. This is especially true for the adoption and adaptation that public cloud enables concerning untapped technologies.


However advantageous public clouds are, they’re not suitable for every function. Therefore, your responsibility as a finance leader is to team up with IT and compliance and assess data sovereignty and latency requirements. In short, ask if public cloud is the right home for your data and workloads.

For example; newer, cloud-native or lesser-used applications may be lower risk to migrate due to their position on the periphery of legacy infrastructure. Conversely, mission-critical workloads with tight data sovereignty requirements and complicated interoperability are likely a bad fit for public cloud without significant, high-risk modernisation.

By taking the “right workload, right place” approach, finance leaders can put their IT to work more effectively, efficiently and sustainably, without tearing up and starting again.


“Adopt and adapt” is a practised mantra in finance because your services often determine the extent of progress.

So, being agile to demand is an inherent challenge, with pressure coming simultaneously from consumers wanting easier lives and business wanting demonstrable change.

Thankfully, “adopt and adapt” no longer means expensive upfront investments in ERP technology that may quickly cease being fit for purpose. Instead, we predict challenger solutions, such as specialised applications and microservices, will join forces with cloud ERP to lessen change risk.

  • Think of it this way: ERP is mission-critical and particularly complex in finance. This complexity stems partly from finance entwining everything, and mergers and acquisitions are commonplace (bringing extra technology).
  • Finance also fights an ERP dichotomy: it’s too important to risk disrupting with change and too important to risk falling behind.
  • As a result, finance leaders can become frozen in their approach to ERP. However, applications and microservices which sit on and integrate with cloud ERP will change the game.


Instead of embarking on a high-risk (but high reward) ERP modernisation project, businesses can deliver comparable value by tapping into the growing market of apps and microservices.

These solutions, covering everything from automation to blockchain and cognitive analytics, can help streamline processes and enhance decision-making insight without disruptive core ERP change.

This means that finance leaders can live more harmoniously with their legacy technology while it’s phased out to a safe timeline, achieving change faster without reinventing the wheel.

Thinking smart about technology will help finance leaders remain competitive, compliant and customer focused as the financial landscape shifts. Moreover, finance can lay a path to a productive, sustainable future by strategically combining technologies and making discreet but impactful management tweaks.

For advice on delivering digital change that matters, check out our finance digitalisation resource hub here.