Closing Excellence facts
Earlier this year, EY held Closing Excellence Seminars in Aarhus and Copenhagen based on their 2018 Nordic Closing Excellence Survey. The survey focused on common characters of high-performers and presented interesting and surprising findings. We’ve outlined some of these findings and added our own thoughts on the subject as well.
Risk and control matrixes are key
A Risk and Control Matrix brings clarity and overview and is key when managing best-in-class internal controls. A Risk and Control Matrix can provide a valuable overview of internal controls and their relation to key risks in financial processes.
According to the survey, high performers within month-end close often have a Risk and Control Matrix in place, which allows them to manage best-in-class internal controls. This not only brings clarity and overview, it also focuses on areas of risk, and ensures a robust control environment.
Impero is ideal for setting up a risk and control matrix – read more about risk and control here.
Bring your controls to life with Impero: Automate your controls and take full advantage of the many benefits related to automation.
High performers have more trust in their financial reporting.
The survey also suggest that it is possible to speed with the closing process while at the same time increase the quality of the output.
How? Centralisation of the reporting setup is a key driver in optimising the closing process and once activities are centralised, they can be standardised and automated as well. Benefits of centralisation often include efficient roll-out of controls, activities and policies, as well as a strong foundation to develop a more standardised approach that allows for automation. There is also a financial benefit since centralisation offers cost-saving opportunities due to economies of scale.
Impero is great for gathering financial reporting activities in one place. Centralisation, standardisation and automation of processes reduces time spent on the financial closing process and heightens the quality at the same time.
The importance of a shared service center
Finally, establishing a shared service center can centralise, standardise and automate your processes, which can generate significant savings and improve the overall quality. With a shared service center, you can gather activities that were once performed in separate locations or divisions in one place, thereby standardising, automating and centralising processes and reduce time spent on these.
Popular services in a shared service center include transaction processing, financial reporting, purchasing and payroll. According to the survey, 79% of high performers within the closing process have a shared service center in place.
Impero is ideal for establishing a shared service center as it enables standardised processes and controls, and it is easy to share control templates throughout the organisation, without spending time on actually sending documentation back and forth.
Organisations can set up reporting dashboards on both company and aggregated level, making it possible to gain a valuable overview of different levels, both in the shared service center and in the retained organisation. Read more about shared service centers and Impero here.