It’s easy to take for granted all the technology advances of the past few decades. Today we hold face-to-face meetings with colleagues halfway around the world through our laptops. We know within a few clicks if a line of business is underperforming – and we can do something about it before it’s too late.
We also make smarter M&A decisions because we can more accurately model the risks, valuation, and costs before final decisions are made. Yet for all the ways that technology has made our work lives easier, there’s one area that still lags: the financial close process. Despite the ubiquity of spreadsheets and ERP systems designed to accelerate and automate transactional processing and other traditional finance functions, closing the books still takes longer than it should.
In a recent study of finance professionals, Host Analytics and Radius Global Market Research found that on average, 35 percent of businesses require six to nine days to close the books while another 16 percent of businesses take 10 days or more. Given all the available technology options, not to mention the added productivity and cost savings that come from cloud-based platforms, there should be more efficient ways to accelerate month-end close.
Read the full text of this article as published in Financial Executives International (FEI) Daily.