An in-depth look at FP&A-related topics that are developed via interviews with finance professionals. Presented as quarterly case studies with practical applications and tools to help you make informed decisions about key FP&A methods.

AFP FP&A Guide: Get Your Data Right

Underwritten by Workday

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The 2022 AFP FP&A Guide: Get Your Data Right, underwritten by Workday, presents six case studies that show how others have addressed common data challenges of creating consistency and clarity out of the multiple sources, varieties and tools in the data value chain. The guide creates a progression through the critical steps in the digital transformation process.

While data permeates every facet of life and work, many finance professionals say they still struggle to get their data right. These case studies are led by finance and represent companies of different sizes and industries. They recognize that quality data is central to FP&A, and that FP&A is central to quality data: 

  1. A Digital Transformation Is Not a Project – AARP   
  2. Business Drives Data, Not the Other Way – ABM Industries  
  3. Delivering Data as a Service – Microsoft  
  4. Create a Center of Excellence Around Reporting – Collectiv   
  5. Data Changes Your People Strategy – Dell  
  6. Leverage Outside Forces as Catalysts for Change – Chick-Fil-A  


A Digital Transformation Is Not a Project

How do you maintain the success you had for the first 60 years of existence for the next 60 years of existence? AARP first changed its mindset from a project-centered approach to one of permanent transformation to meet its customer needs. This relied on excellence in three areas:  

  1. Infrastructure and mobility
  2. Customer facing data    
  3. Analytics   

Learn more about AARP's transformation

Business Drives Data, Not the Other Way  

ABM Industries’ first attempt at a digital transformation demonstrated that data would revert to a disordered state without proper enabling components. The second attempt prioritized business objectives and execution of  those plans.  

See how ABM Industries drives data


Delivering Data as a Service

Delivering data means we provide finance teams and business partners with the data they need, fully packaged, connected and optimized, to enable them to focus on creating clarity and making the next, best decision instead of wrangling data. Our vision was to focus on activities delivering the highest business value.

Find out more about how Microsoft delivers data as a service

Create a Center of Excellence Around Reporting

The business intelligence consultancy Collectiv explains its process to make good on the last mile of data delivery. The CoE approach is to a governing body that sits in your organization to deliver the following objectives:  

  • Get your data right by creating an accepted, single version of the truth.
  • Get your reporting right by delivering that data in a consistent, reliable format.
  • Drive adoption among your community of users through cross-departmental training, education, mentoring and guidance.
  • Learn how Collectiv creates excellence around reporting

    Data Changes Your People Strategy

    A digital transformation also implies changes to your people strategy, and this case study shows how Dell transformed the traditional, hierarchical corporate pyramid into a diamond. The “four Ts” brought digital technologies and tactics into the pyramid and automated them, supporting the most important part: the talent and the teams.  

    Discover how Dell changed their people strategy 

    Leverage Outside Forces as Catalysts for Change

    Chick-Fil-A had an important realization: Finance cannot stand apart from data projects for fear of losing control and stewardship; it needs to go in the opposite direction and bring that discipline to the rest of the enterprise. Chick-Fil-A created the Financial Solutions Lab (FSL) and linked its transformation efforts with contemporary trends to deliver value across the business.

    Learn more about Chick-Fil-A's transformation



    Published September 06, 2022