Getting the Most from Technology: Keys to Better Decision-Making

Article excerpt

Leveraging technology is a popular concept that is often misunderstood. How do you know whether your technology investments are worth the time, effort, and cost?

Asking questions about the following points can help you see where you are on the technology curve and identify strengths and weaknesses.

* Percent of data input, transaction processing, and standardized document generation that is automated or outsourced.

* Percent of semi-repetitive task processes, including customized report and analysis generation, that are integrated and automated.

* Confidence that processing and report-generation costs (as a percent of assets, deposits or reserves) will decline over the next two years without sacrificing quality.

* Satisfaction with the amount of data available for reporting and decision analysis (including performance and risk analysis, internal, and external reports).

* Confidence in your ability to convert data into useful information for reporting and decision-making (trend and performance analysis; competitive benchmarking; performance driver drill-down; and metric calibration such as capital at risk and risk-adjusted return on capital) in a timely and cost-efficient manner.

Percent of staff using software applications to generate customized analyses and reports promptly and cost-efficiently.

* Percent of staff that uses software applications to design and facilitate project and decision management.

* Confidence in your deployment of technology to facilitate information-sharing and collaboration across functional areas and within project teams.

* Satisfaction in your ability to track cause and effect across key decision processes and actions (loan approval, risk management, for instance).

* Confidence in your ability to improve process applications quickly and at relatively low cost.

Here are some general guidelines for making better use of technology:

Initiate task automation. …