Financial Systems and Reporting Practice Group
Many start-ups and small businesses use pre-packaged accounting solutions, such as Quickbooks and Peachtree, which provide reasonable functionality, flexible reporting, and a user-friendly interface for an extremely affordable price. In many instances, the user in a very small business need not even be an accountant to operate his business effectively in a small business environment using one of these low end packages.
However, businesses grow and change, operations become distributed geographically, multiple lines of business spawn, the company goes international, and leadership is shared. The complexity of the business, the ability to measure performance by business unit, location, department, and product line, and consolidate financial reporting into a single set of financial statements, along with doing business in foreign currencies forces companies to consider more sophisticated accounting solutions than the one that got their business started.
While mid-range accounting solutions continue to exist, the evolution of cloud-based solutions by the major Enterprise Reporting and Planning (ERP) providers have brought the price of large integrated financial reporting systems into the budgets of many Small and Medium Enterprises (SME’s). Often these systems are “sold” without a true assessment of the customer’s business processes and reporting requirements, leaving the customer stunned when the system they just spent a bunch of money on, forces them to adopt the software’s business processes (termed “best practices”), distributes transaction processing to non-accountants, imposes a cultural burden on the company, then fails to deliver even the most rudimentary of financial reports necessary for them to run their business. In many ways, Quickbooks has a more robust reporting functionality and drill-down capability than the systems costing tens and even hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Our practice serves to assist our clients in assessing the system choices, design effective solutions within the system, interface with the vendor’s technical personnel to ensure a successful implementation, and create meaningful reports to provide the metrics necessary to drive the profitability of the enterprise.
Practice Leader – Chris Chillingworth
Chris Chillingworth is a Partner in CFOs2GO and has spent his entire career in Finance providing a means, through technology, for companies to not only gauge where they have been, but to expeditiously plan and execute on their future. He has been the CFO of many start ups, as well as a public-company CFO for hundred million dollar companies. Chris has personally been responsible for a number of Oracle implementations, provided post-implementation support in Oracle, SAP, Great Plains, and similar environments, and has written a number of micro-applications in Microsoft Access™ and Excel™ that assist our clients each week in forecasting, planning and managing their operations.
Who We Serve
We help start up companies get their books and records established. A couple hours on the front end will save days or weeks, months later when various regulatory reports or tax returns are due.
Your reports are always late and amount to a rear view mirror on a humid day. We streamline reporting processes, project income and cash flow forward to get you looking through the windshield, compare your results to the competition, and surface significant actionable trends in your business to allow it to accelerate forward.
Companies in transition
Whether your company is growing or shrinking, your information requirements are changing. We work with companies in transition to meet the growing needs of a thriving business, or downsize redundant or obsolete systems for businesses in decline.
Public companies have unique reporting requirements. We work with all your information systems to produce timely and accurate reporting, and through a strategic business partner provide the filing tools which integrate narrative text and informational data, along with built-in XBRL reporting capabilities.
- Financial process improvements, including streamlining systems, shortening the close cycle and reducing costs.
- Automation of manual systems, including consolidations, reconciliations, revenue recognition, inventory tracking, depreciation, sales commission accounting, sales pipeline management, executive dashboards, and non-standard stock option accounting, reducing hours of preparation to minutes.
- ERP accounting implementations.
- Forecasting models and proforma financial statements.
- Rolling cash forecasts.
- Key Metrics and Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s).
- Management and Board Reports.
- Profitability by product or service line, division, customer, location, or project.
Successful Client Engagements
- Setup financial reporting packages for 4 different public companies, supporting every disclosure on a quarterly and annual basis, facilitating discussions with analysts, management, the Board, employees, and the outside C.P.A. firms
- Prepared forward-looking projections for non-profit inner city preparatory charter school allowing them to raise capital and obtain grants to meet future growth requirements.
- Prepared comprehensive monthly management reporting package consisting of over 20 slides addressing budget vs actual results by function and by spending category, KPI’s, key ratios, headcount, trend charts, and ROI. Process uses VBA code on addressable data, prepared inside one hour once month was “closed”.
- Automated 13 week rolling cash forecast by converting existing receivable and payables agings into forecasts on a proprietary basis, allowing management to foresee cash shortfalls and surpluses.
- Performed breakeven analysis for 2 different clients allowing them to price projects profitability going forward.
- Developed VBA-structured queries to gather project data from multiple reports, consolidate it into a single unified database structure that would report profitability by project, account team and customer, as well as identify project exceptions, and summarize data into meaningful client-centric reports.
“CFOs2Go provided us with a Consulting CFO who understood the needs of our business, implemented policies and procedures designed to govern our operations, trained our staff to carry out those policies, and structured our ERP reporting to allow us to view our profitability from many perspectives, as well as understand our financial position and cash flows on a routine basis. We now make informed business decisions that will allow us to achieve our high growth targets for this year and beyond.”