It is the beginning of a new year and you are back at work after a well-deserved break. But, were you dreading the load of paperwork and time you knew it would take to close off jobs before you could sit back and relax at the end of last year?
If year-end was a laborious and painful time for your business, you may benefit from taking a good look at the systems you have in place and ask yourself: What can we do to streamline the three C’s – Consolidation, Closing and Collating financials this year?
These three C’s often cause headaches because many companies hold on to old systems and do not want to adopt new technology. Unfortunately, many SME’s do not understand the full value of complete system integration.
Some don’t understand the technical terms and are therefore reluctant to change, while others mistakenly assume their business cannot afford an integrated system.
The reality for many small to medium sized businesses is that different teams are working with different versions of data which is not shared instantly or easily. Some teams end up not having access to the information they need at a particular point in time. Teams have to make independent decisions based only on the information in front of them, and not based on real-time data that would benefit the whole organisation. The manual collation of data through “outdated” processes is both time consuming and increases the risk of human error.
What to do:
The single most cost-effective way of overcoming these issues is through an end-to-end, fully integrated, automated business system that is built from the ground up for SMEs.
Don’t deploy a large enterprise solution that has been labelled as suitable for SMEs – pick a solution that is built specifically for your size business.
Choose a business system that meets all your industry-specific requirements and legislation. Partner with a solution provider that understands your pain and wants to solve your issues and not just make money.
Many businesses’ accounting processes are still manual or lack real-time updates. This makes access to information a challenge and when consolidation of multiple data sources needs to happen, mistakes creep in which take time and resources to fix. If financials are not correctly maintained throughout the year, then year-end can become even more of a challenge.
What to do:
When a business deploys an integrated business management solution then such a system will have built-in best practices that the business should adhere to. Best-practices give businesses the direction and tools they require to increase efficiency and optimise processes.
3. Collating financials
As your business grows, managing its accounting and financials becomes more complex. The increased amount of financial information to be processed can become overwhelming, leading to inaccuracies, lost revenue and missed opportunities.
What to do:
Luckily modern technology, in the form of an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and business management solution, will allow you to automate many of these processes and effectively manage all financial processes.
Don’t let another year pass without a great business management system being implemented in your business. Legacy accounting systems only cater to financials, but an integrated ERP goes one step further by relating the financials back to stock, manufacturing processes and other business units. It therefore helps to enforce best-practices throughout the year so, when year-end comes around most, if not all, of the information you need, will already be loaded and ready.