When discussing the case for artificial intelligence, Oracle CEO Mark Hurd argues that “the way to ensure that it gets the kind of business and social results we’re all looking for is to embed machine learning into existing applications.” Automation is being integrated in a similar fashion within current enterprise financial applications to increase efficiency, reduce error and keep data secure. Oracle ERP Cloud and Oracle EPM Cloud are already utilizing automation to their benefit, and new applications of automation are becoming essential to today’s businesses.
The financial close process can be intense, requiring extensive planning and organization across teams. Oracle EPM Cloud automates the simpler tasks and triggers dependent processes to keep processes flowing. Automatically tracking task status and events frees up time for accounting staff to stay focused on more complex assignments, directing human brain power where it can achieve the most.
For more routine tasks, Oracle Account Reconciliation Cloud can automate subroutines during the reconciliation process to improve staff efficiencies. This tool also empowers customers, offering custom rule sets for the thousands of reconciliations many organizations process throughout the year.
Blending capabilities from AI and automation, Oracle Financials Cloud integrates optical character recognition (OCR) into invoice entry. Automating this process step can reduce both manual errors and processing costs. Further automation can validate and pay invoices completely independently, flagging those needing human intervention and sending them to appropriate personnel.
Autonomous Cloud services are changing the game in several fields, but one of the most compelling to executives is cybersecurity. Oracle’s new Autonomous Database automatically protects itself with the latest patches and security updates while self-tuning and self-repairing. The impact of immediate access to patches shouldn’t be understated–it could mean the difference between your customers’ data staying protected or your company joining the 89% of organizations that have experienced a data breach. Minimizing patch implementation lag time is a vital component of cybersecurity strategy, and cloud services are using automated capabilities to close the gap faster than ever before.
These process innovations showcase how automation and AI can be used as additional tools available through enterprise financial applications rather than to replace humans entirely. The continued dependence on human managers and oversight exhibited by automation implementations provides a strong case for how these tools are augmenting workflow processes across industries while freeing employees to tackle larger problems and initiatives. For financial applications, the future is integration.