If your business doesn’t follow a period-end close workflow, you could be throwing money out the window. Establishing a workflow not only delineates the processes for all parties involved, but it also presents a written record of that process, making it open for future improvements that might speed up the close or further ensure the data’s accuracy.
Period-end closing involves:
- Data collection
- Data scrubbing
- Report generation
- Report review
The involved parties include the various individual lines of business, staff accountants, financial analysts, and finance team members.
The importance of a period-end workflow
The goal of all organizations is to produce timely and accurate financial statements within a reasonable period of time after the period-end close. These financial statements are critical to decision makers as they help to understand the health of the organization prior to making financial decisions.
Broken business processes suck time and money from an organization. Time and resources lost managing broken processes does not need to be considered “the cost of doing business.”
By following a workflow to close the books, your team can accomplish your close as quickly as possible, ensuring that the data provided to your decision makers is always the most accurate.
Incorporate procedures into daily operations
Whenever possible, incorporate as many of your period-end close needs into your daily operations. Doing this work ahead of time will help the speed and organization of your close immeasurably.
Work closely with other departments
If it makes sense to obtain data from other departments, set that into action in your workflow. If the requirement for this information is written into the workflow, you can depend on quality data in a timely manner, freeing up your accounting team to accomplish other accounting tasks.
Be open to improvements
Your workflow might not start out as the quickest or the most accurate. That’s okay. By writing a workflow, you are able to revisit, revise, and readjust as often as necessary until your process is ironclad.
Don’t forget the software
Flexi has a full suite of products that can help you manage your close and your workflow; store information in a full content management system and seamlessly access it in FlexiFinancials.
Flexi’s open, non-proprietary architecture is based on the latest Microsoft standards and tools. It supports industry standard databases such as Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server and allows for easy integration through web services. The Flexi applications utilize Microsoft SharePoint to provide browser based, enterprise-wide content portal and workflow capabilities.