Things keep getting faster – markets morph and accelerate, acquisitions spring up, divisions multiply, and geographies shift. Somehow, you and your team have to keep up. You must improve your monthly close and speed up your financial consolidation and reporting. You need to feel confident that the numbers you’re submitting to the board or SEC are actually accurate. But how can you do this?
Many companies try to fix the problem by adding more spreadsheets, more big software, or more people. But guess what? None of these solutions are viable. Here are three reasons why.
1. Spreadsheets are non-collaborative, error-prone, and fragile.
According to ACCA, more than 90% of spreadsheets contain errors. They’re prone to broken links because they’re often passed to multiple users, and the lack of version control causes data integrity issues. At RedEnvelope for example, shares fell 25% when they reduced financial forecasting after finding a single spreadsheet error. The CFO resigned the same day. Do you really want to spend each month worrying about your job stability because of Excel?
2. Big software is expensive, IT-centric, and difficult to maintain.
Traditional on-premise tools like Oracle Hyperion, SAP BPC, and IBM Cognos were developed way back in the 1990s. They require thousands of dollars in hardware and servers, and they don’t make business data analytics easily accessible. These applications weren’t built for finance and accounting departments, so every time you need to add a new sub or modify a report, you have to ask your IT team. Even worse, upgrades are only done once every few years. How can you can keep pace and track changes to your business with a static tool?
3. More resources can’t fix a broken process.
Adding more people won’t solve your problems if they’re still passing around hundreds of spreadsheets or using clunky, on-premise applications. To effect change, you need to develop and implement a better process.
Click on the image below to watch our new Adaptive Consolidation video and learn how Adaptive’s financial consolidation software can help you consolidate smarter.
Also, check out tomorrow’s blog on three tips to make your financial consolidation process more agile!
Follow Shauna Steib on Twitter, @ShaunaSteib, for more financial planning, budgeting, and forecasting tips, as well as live updates from Dreamforce ’13, in San Francisco.