8020 Consulting assisted a $200 million manufacturing and engineering client struggling to consolidate financial results and create meaningful analyses due to the use of separate operational and accounting software by multiple acquired firms in the same sector. The client utilized over thirty monthly reports for reporting, analytics, and forecasting, most of which were large workbooks with numerous worksheets. Each entity had separate data-gathering processes, leading to common errors and weeks of effort required to complete the deliverables. Despite accepting these errors as the status quo, the client lacked the capacity and experience to convert and build these reports using their nearly implemented EPM system without losing functionality and aesthetics.
8020 Consulting’s Solution
After the client selected a cloud-based financial reporting and planning tool (Planful), we assisted with the implementation of the system, both in the design of the consolidated hierarchy and structure and in the technical implementation of importing data from each entity’s production system to capture unit volume, landed cost, and customer data.
Following the Planful implementation, the second phase of the project included building, transforming, and migrating the dozens of reports from the manual, error-prone processes before into efficient and accurate reports from the consolidating system. One of the key requests from the client was that the reports retained as much of the look and feel of their original iterations, but that we would vastly improve the accuracy and efficiency by utilizing Planful instead of each entity’s individual systems.
After just two months of migrating to centralized reports, we were able to assemble the 30+ required deliverables in 3 days, as opposed to 2 weeks with the old process. As a bonus, the reports were now error-free and had built-in checks, creating more confidence in the executive and sales teams that reviewed these reports. There was now time before the executive and board meetings to perform meaningful analysis and respond to the results on the business instead of cobbling together financials.
Furthermore, we were able to leverage the tools to expand our planning capability, including building a rolling cash and P&L forecast as well as tracking and managing working capital.