How BMO Modernized Their Finance Platform to Derive Business Insights

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Key Takeaways

⇨ Outdated finance platforms can hinder an organization's ability to gain key insights.

⇨ SAP S/4HANA Finance can automate journal entries, eliminate data sets, and rationalize general ledger accounts

⇨ Organizations can keep their transformation in-house to maximize control and save on external fees.

SAP Client: Bank of Montreal (BMO)

Challenge: Executives needed to modernize their existing technology to meet shifting business and regulatory requirements. Employees had to spend significant time and effort on manual routine transactions, as BMO had multiple mainframe ledgers running monthly batch cycles with limited data.

Initiative: Update BMO’s platform to one that could provide flexible, transparent, and up-to-date financial data.

Solution: BMO utilized SAP S/4HANA Finance to provide strategic business insights. Its universal journal offered users simplified data architecture with a common set of posting data. Aiming to mitigate risk and reduce costs, BMO kept its finance transformation program largely in-house, allowing it to minimize external fees.

Benefits: Through this transformation, BMO will replace seven legacy general ledgers with SAP S/4HANA Finance. The bank has already completed three of those replacements and plans to finish the project in 2023.

Through the process, BMO was able to rationalize nearly 900 general ledger accounts and eliminate over 100 reports and data sets. It also saved over $1 million CAD in technology costs while improving data access and self-service reporting, as well as improving employee experience with SAP Fiori.

A Closer Look: To take advantage of SAP’s best practices, BMO added experts from SAP MaxAttention to the program delivery team. This allowed the bank to combine its internal knowledge with industry best practices to ensure a smooth and efficient transition.

Client Remarks: “Our users are thrilled. People are really excited, particularly about the SAP Fiori user experience. The ability to drill down into the data to see which source system transactions are coming from has been a big win. [A key] benefit is changing the role of the finance professional from just getting the numbers right (governance and control), to providing more insight and analysis to drive business performance,” noted Cally Hunt, Head of Finance Technology Transformation, Bank of Montreal.

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