Over the past decade, a long-term process of “digitization” and “datafication” of the financial management mission area has been increasingly on the minds of executive leaders in defense agencies. Emerging technologies such as cloud computing, big data analytics and artificial intelligence have been slowly introduced into this environment in bite size pieces for those who had the appetite to merge Finance and Technology together to bridge the gap. In other words, the emergence of “fintech” began. The Department of Defense has been tasked to bring true reform to the financial management environment.1 The goal is to build a standardized and data driven mission area that will directly align with the modernization efforts of the National Defense Strategy.
Technology is rapidly evolving, and enterprise financial management is faced with critical decisions on cloud strategy, data analytics, and machine learning that historically haven’t been in a CFO’s purview. The more tech savvy a financial management department becomes, the more empowered they can be to make decisions on the future of their mission area. We must continue to promote innovation and evangelize the need for financial management experts to lean into the technology conversations. In this paper we will explore the strategies to consider when bringing reform to the DoD financial management mission areas.