BI: an invaluable tool for data consolidation and business reporting
Reconciling data used for statutory consolidation and financial reporting is now a major challenge for companies. Meanwhile, this data is often derived from multiple sources and comes with a wide variety of analysis and management methods. It is therefore a priority to unify data consolidation and business reporting within the same solution.
Why unify consolidation and business reporting?
Consolidation and business reporting are two complementary tasks, which consist of reconciling all the financial or accounting data of a group.
In this way, the latter can have a global view of its various subsidiaries. However, reconciling information from very different backgrounds is a considerable challenge for the finance department, the IT department and other company departments.
That is why it is crucial to set up a unified consolidation and reporting process. To do this, organizations need a solution that can handle multiple data sources and respond to all categories of users, while simplifying data processing and sharing.
Benefits of a unified consolidation and reporting software
To simplify their daily financial management, large groups with many subsidiaries (both domestic and foreign) need to adopt a consolidation and business reporting software.
A reporting and consolidation solution automatically performs two particularly time-consuming tasks. Indeed, companies have to deal with increasingly large volumes of data. At the same time, reporting systems are becoming increasingly complex. That is why these tasks can no longer be carried out properly using manual methods.
Minimizes the risk of error
Data consolidation must lead to highly accurate results: there is no room for error. A unified solution has the advantage of considerably reducing the risk of errors that could affect data interpretation. Consolidated data is, indeed, an essential tool to guide decision makers on a daily basis.
Increases productivity and agility
With unified software, data consolidation is no longer a one-time, tedious task: it is a seamless, continuous activity, free of other unnecessary tools. Thus, the company increases its productivity, and also its agility.
Makes more reliable financial forecasts
The gap between financial forecasts and reality is a major problem. Reconciling reporting and consolidation enables us to remedy this situation by providing more reliable data and more meaningful comparisons.
Provides an overview of your financial data
Unifying also offers the group an overall view of its data, which makes it possible to better understand and compare the situations of the various subsidiaries. At the same time, communication between the different stakeholders of the company becomes easier and smoother, because they speak a common language.
How can consolidated data be made reliable?
The consolidation and reporting software is an essential tool for optimizing performance management and getting a better view of the group’s activity. It is also an excellent way to ensure the quality and reliability of data, if appropriate methods are put in place.
Harmonizes data collection
The consolidated data must reflect the group’s activities as accurately as possible. It is therefore necessary to harmonize the way in which data from various organizations is compiled.
In an international context, each subsidiary is likely to use a different currency, accounting standard or language. It is therefore necessary to set up a central reference system to interpret all this information following a common approach.
To achieve this, a unified reporting and consolidation software is indispensable. It enables you to collect data in a consistent way, to simplify its processing, and also to bring together teams around a single tool.
Support during the transition
However, the deployment of such a tool requires considerable support for users. It’s not just a matter of teaching them how to use software, but of promoting a new culture, so that everyone becomes aware of the richness of the data available to them.
Investing in training is an effective lever to put an end to the issue of differences in interpretation, while significantly reducing the risk of error in data entry. Thus, it is important to explain to users how the common reference was designed, and also to transmit to them the best practices related to consolidation and management reporting.
Automates data collection and controls
An automated collection and control system with a central repository helps avoid most of the problems inherent to data reliability. Indeed, in most cases, these are caused by human factors, such as input or interpretation errors.
In addition, automation enables you to free yourself from time-consuming tasks that have little added value. From data extraction to transformation, including the loading of data flows, everything can be managed without human intervention.
How does Business Intelligence facilitate data consolidation?
To meet this need to unify consolidation and business reporting, Big Data and Business Intelligence seem to be invaluable tools. Indeed, a Dataviz software helps you to easily perform a large number of analyses throughout the consolidation process.
Monitoring dashboards for the various subsidiaries
With a Business Intelligence solution, it is possible to track completion dates related to data collection, even over multiple periods. Through these feedback dashboards from subsidiaries, the head office can identify the areas for improvement in each one, and also compare the time of entry of reports for each subsidiary.
Better management of inter-company flows
Reconciling inter-company flows is a major challenge for groups, which must have an overview of the levels of these flows. Business Intelligence helps highlight the differences between different data sources, differences compared to previous periods, and also residual differences.
More effective consistency checks
Throughout the process of data transmission from the subsidiaries, Dataviz makes it possible to visually monitor consistency checker resolution. This makes it possible to quickly identify a possible delay and to set up adapted mechanisms to secure the deadlines of the organization concerned.
Better data control
With its ability to cross-reference information, a Business Intelligence tool allows for better data control, facilitating comparisons between different periods. This allows you to set up a real analytical review, with the possibility of dynamic navigation. In this way, it is possible to quickly detect any issues that may occur during the consolidation process.
From saving time and increasing productivity to minimizing the risk of error and improving performance management, among other things, unifying consolidation and reporting offers many benefits for companies. However, to exploit its full potential, it is essential to render the data reliable through a central repository. Thus, a Business Intelligence tool is the ideal solution to simplify the collection, processing and sharing of data, by ensuring that all organizations speak a common language.