Why choose OKRs for your finance team
OKRs (Objectives and Key Results) are a collaborative management methodology that helps finance teams set and achieve goals. By aligning day-to-day operations to company strategy, finance OKRs optimize process and drive real results.
Learn more about what OKRs are and how to use them.
While finance operations are about managing the company’s cash flow, expenses, and revenue, OKRs are not a management methodology.
OKRs help finance teams solve their biggest challenges — creating focus beyond everyday tasks and connecting to strategic priorities.
How OKRs solve finance team challenges
Focus and alignment are the missing elements for finance teams stuck in the day-to-day cycle.
OKRs lay the foundation for business-as-usual work by focusing teams with objectives, which are aligned to the company's strategic goals. Key results ensure continuity in this focus, leveraging the finance team’s high KPI and metric-aware goals to monitor progress and drive adaptation.
With focus and alignment at the forefront, OKRs help finance teams improve workflows. Add in automation for key results and tasks through an OKR software platform like Quantive, and finance teams have even more time to do what they do best: optimize.
Setting OKRs for the finance team
Finance teams and sales teams have a similar predicament in setting OKRs — the company depends on them to reach all their goals. The business-as-usual tasks for finance, like payroll, budgeting, and collections, can’t be compromised. OKRs are meant to be ambitious, but not at the risk of endangering the company.
While task-focused OKRs, like setting a budget or creating reports, are common in finance, OKRs shouldn’t be treated like a glorified to-do list. By ensuring alignment between objectives and the strategic goals of the company, finance teams and individuals can use OKRs to do more than check off boxes.
Finance OKRs are commonly top-down, with leadership serving as the bridge between day-to-day operations and knowing the organization’s overarching objectives. OKRs require trust from both parties: leaders must trust team members to focus on “how” to progress key results, and individuals must trust leaders to motivate and guide them with the “why” through objectives.
Finance OKR focus areas
Finance OKRs can focus on business-as-usual operations or stretch initiatives to enhance team performance. A few areas of focus for finance team OKRs are:
- Taxes and Accounting
- Accounts payable/receivable
- Financial strategy
- Invoicing and crediting
- Inventory management
- Asset management
- Revenue and profit
Check out all our finance OKR examples below.
Finance OKR examples
Taxes and accounting OKR examples
- Objective: Successfully pass external audit
- Key result 1: Reduce number of audit findings to <5
- Key result 2: File 100% of customer and vendor contracts in appropriate Dropbox repositories
- Key result 3: Reduce time of audit from 6 weeks to 4 weeks
- Objective: Prepare accounting records for the move to the new ERP system
- Key result 1: Identify and fix core reporting issues for the new ERP tool
- Key result 2: Find or development 5 reporting equivalents in the new system
- Key result 3: Analyze 10 expense types to identify cost saving opportunities
Accounts payable/receivable OKR examples
- Objective: Simplify and improve internal procedures
- Key result 1: >85% of invoices have expense-type categorization
- Key result 2: Reduce late primary document reporting from 40% to 15%
- Key result 3: Half payment processing time from "application" to "paid" from 12h to 6h
Budgeting OKR examples
- Objective: Improve our annual budgeting process
- Key result 1: Review & train on 5 Department heads on new process
- Key result 2: Review every department's budget proposals before mid-Q3
- Key result 3: Get sign off for the final budget from all leads
Financial strategy OKR examples
- Objective: Improve our financial reporting process
- Key result 1: 5 new financial department hires
- Key result 2: Move 50% of books to the cloud-based version of QuickBooks
- Key result 3: Close 100% of our financials within 2 weeks of the end of quarter
- Objective: Make the quarterly analysis process more efficient
- Key result 1: Define top 3 quarterly improvements for reporting
- Key result 2: Host 3 workshops on reporting with >90% attendance
- Key result 3: Build and implement 5 reporting templates
Invoicing and crediting OKR examples
- Objective: Balance the team workload to better serve customers
- Key result 1: Increase processed transactions per team member by 20%
- Key result 2: Reduce average transaction pending time from 24 hours to 18 hours
- Key result 3: Conduct 4 “best practices” coaching sessions
Inventory management OKR examples
- Objective: Improve warehouse inventory record management
- Key result 1: Reduce average inventory check time from 14h to 6h
- Key result 2: Automate 5 critical processes
- Key result 3: Reduce bookkeeping discrepancies to 3%
Payroll OKR examples
- Objective: Make payroll errors obsolete
- Key result 1: Reduce failed payroll error resolutions to zero
- Key result 2: Reduce payroll error rate to less than 0.25%
- Key result 3: Reduce manual payroll input processes by 25%
Asset management OKR examples
- Objective: Improve expense management to increase profitability
- Key result 1: Identify 5 highest expense areas
- Key result 2: Sort out 200 payment areas with transparent expense tags
- Key result 3: Cut monthly expenses by 25%
Revenue and profit OKR examples
- Objective: Shift remote work emphasis to reduce office expenses
- Key result 1: Reduce office maintenance budget from $15000 to $7500
- Key result 2: Cut employee travel expenses from $12000 to $3000
- Key result 3: Secure a $7,500+ lease for renting out office space
How Quantive simplifies OKRs for finance teams
Quantive is your bridge between strategy and execution. Founded on the objectives and key results (OKR) methodology, our Strategy Execution Platform is where businesses plan successful strategy, focus and align teams to it, and stay on the leading edge of progress.
As your company looks to achieve the best possible results, you need a modern approach to run your business and change your business. The Modern Operating Model brings strategy, teams, and data together to help make decisions faster, optimize operations, and drive better business outcomes.
Whether you’re a large enterprise facing competitive disruption or a small business leading the innovative charge, Quantive helps get you where you want to go.
Ready to achieve the best possible? Start using Quantive for free.