Traditional models are facing major disruption: Chairman of Honeywell Automation

Our Bureau Bengaluru | Updated on November 15, 2019 Published on November 15, 2019

(from left) Pradip Kanakia, Managing Partner and Assurance Leader, South India, PWC; Ganesh Shenoy, CFO, MTR Foods; Suresh Senapathy, Chairman of Honeywell Automation; Aman Choudhari, Chairman, CII-Karnataka, and K Ramesh, Director, CII-Karnataka, at the inaugural session of the conclave

For CFOs, AI is no longer in the future, it is here now, says Suresh Senapathy

“We live in an era of disruption where global forces are changing how we live and how we work. Companies that are agile, flexible and adaptable will thrive and the rest will perish,” said Suresh Senapathy, Chairman, Honeywell Automation & Member of Wipro Enterprise and Wipro GE.

Addressing the CII CFO Conclave 2019, Senapathy said, “In today’s environment, supply is in far excess of demand, new business models are forcing companies to innovate, adapt and transform for a digital customer-first world. AI is no longer in the future; it is here and now. CFOs cannot afford to spend majority of their time on traditional financial functions. We need to leverage the vast flow of data that a digitised world is generating. It is no longer whether a company will be disrupted, it is when and how?”

Talking about transformation in the accounting industry, he said, “Traditional financial functions need to be digitised to allow CFOs to spend more time in engaging with the business.”

Digital transformation

He further said, “With technological innovation at an all-time high, access to emerging markets, more empowered customers and more active government intervention, traditional business models are going to face major disruption.”

Pradip Kanakia, Managing Partner and Assurance Leader, South India, PwC, in his address, said that CFOs are best placed to drive digital transformation in an organisation as they have touch points with every function. “While CFO’s conventional role still remains and is extremely important and there cannot be any dilution, CFOs need to step-up and drive transformation in a business by leveraging the power of digital to build differentiating capabilities.”

Change agents

Ganesh Shenoy, CFO, MTR Foods said, CFOs, long seen for their role in tracking performance and efficiency, are now charged with top-to-bottom strategy, and as catalysts for transformation and growth. They must not only maintain their firms’ financial standing but serve as change agents as well. They need the foresight to incorporate technology effectively and the wisdom to re-frame technology from being a nice-to-have capital expenditure to an operational expense. Digitisation is now a realistic goal for the finance function because of a range of technological advances.

Published on November 15, 2019
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