Three reporting strategies for CFOs
As the Chief Financial Officers of a private equity firm, you’ve no doubt had a hectic year. The economic uncertainty surrounding the pandemic and its nascent recovery has reinforced the importance of quick access to decision-making business data. Typical accounting applications are pretty good at organizing business data into monthly, quarterly, and annual financial statements. However, while these kinds of “hindsight views” have value, they arrive too late to use for strategic decision making. Ad hoc reporting processes can help fill in the gaps, but these too lack in timeliness, consistency, and control.
In response, many private equity firms are deploying three strategies to obtain deeper and more timely financial insight. Sage Intacct covers these strategies in-depth in this white paper. Here we offer a quick overview to get you thinking.
1. Close faster
A fast close minimizes the time to release monthly or quarterly financials. Instead of waiting for the calendar to turn over to begin closing the books, finance teams executing the fast close proactively reconcile and review key accounts on a more frequent basis. To accomplish this, you’ll need real-time visibility into those accounts. One of our clients, CareATC, was able to cut their monthly close time in half with Sage Intacct. You can read their story here.
2. Bring together disparate data
Leading cloud financial systems, like Sage Intacct, allow you to integrate financial and operational data from within and outside of the financial system, in real time, for a holistic view of the business. The result is fast access to data from all facets of your business, with reports that meet each team member’s specific needs while retaining that all-important connection to the underlying data.
3. Take your pulse with dashboard reporting
Executive dashboards provide KPIs that that illustrate the status of your business. Modern dashboards are interactive, allowing you to drill into the various metrics and interact with the underlying data. Dashboards can incorporate color scaling, trend indicators, conditional highlighting, and sparklines that help focus your attention on areas that might be cause for concern. Sandra Fendley, the chief accounting officer for our client Vasquero Midstream, told us, “We can rapidly produce trusted information about any particular piece of the business and have an accurate picture of individual projects, monthly operating spend, as well as invested capital.” You can read Vasquero’s story here.
Private equity firms, more so than many other businesses, trade in real-time data. While having a stock report from last month may be helpful — having today’s report and tomorrow’s predictions is imperative. Cloud-based financial management applications make this data easier to collect, present, and digest. Read more about new approaches for the data-driven private equity CFO here.