How much money came into your business last month? How much went out? What was paid and what was purchased? These questions should have easy and immediate answers…at least in an ideal scenario.

The scenario at many companies is less than ideal, unfortunately. Answering basic accounting questions takes more time and effort than it should. And even once someone gets the numbers they went looking for, they haven’t necessarily answered their questions or eliminated all confusion.

Do you really know where your money is? Too often, the answer is no. This blog will explore why that happens, why that matters, and how to get better visibility into financial activity.

The Problem of Unclear Accounting

Here’s an example that illustrates the bigger problem: A company needs to track its outstanding checks, then remove items from the list when a check clears. It’s basic due diligence – but that doesn’t mean it’s easy.

Tracking means keeping an Excel spreadsheet of each outstanding check. And to find out when a check clears, it involves checking with various department heads on a daily basis while manually reconciling banking info against the spreadsheet. As a result, the process is slow, inefficient, and prone to error, resulting in everything from accounting mistakes to cash flow crisis.

Many accounting processes have this same problem: where they depend on spreadsheets, manual entries, and slow-moving information sources. It takes ample time and input to keep the data updated and in order. As a result, the financial information decision-makers have at their disposal can be inaccurate, incomplete, outdated, or irrelevant – never a wise way to operate.

The problem of unclear accounting is more widespread than it seems and more consequential too. Fortunately, the solution is simpler than it seems too, and has a bigger impact than expected.

Understanding Accounting at a Glance

Clarity, context, and certainty all depend on having visibility into financial information. But visibility alone isn’t enough – decision makers inside and outside the accounting department need to see important metrics updated in real-time and displayed in a format that maximizes understanding and enables action. Put differently, critical insights should be served up on a platter instead of having to be hunted down.

The benefits of having the best information at all times are obvious. Less clear is how to make that happen.

It all depends on the accounting software in place. Either it makes information easier to organize, analyze, and utilize, or it does the opposite. It’s a safe bet that anytime spreadsheets or manual entries are involved, an accounting process runs less efficiently as a result.

With Sage Intacct, you can ditch spreadsheets for good in favor of financial dashboards that bring important metrics and KPIs into one place. You no longer need to crunch numbers, find figures, or update dashboards by hand, either, because all that happens automatically. With Sage Intacct, you spend a lot less time managing financial data and a lot more time using it to make smarter, speedier, and more strategic decisions. And you always know where your money is. See how Sage Intacct looks in action – schedule a demo with Dean Dorton.

Philip Massey,
Software Services Director • 919.796.5408