Any organization should be able to produce accurate and timely financial statements in a reasonable amount of time after the month’s end. Financial statements are crucial to management, so they can understand the financial health of the organization and make short-term and long-term operation and strategic decisions in a timely manner.   An important tool […]

And God (of accounting) spoke these words: “I am the Lord your God…of accounting, who brought you out of financial trouble, out of the land of decreasing financial returns.” Unto them he bestowed 5 commandments of balance sheet reconciliation that would forever be the foundation of an efficient and effective accounting team. Are you guilty […]

Last week was a bad week for Tesco and its investors. After a whistleblower in the finance department came forward to alert senior executives as to a potential accounting black hole, chief executive Dave Lewis was forced to admit that Tesco had overstated their profits by a whopping £250m for the first half of 2014 […]

Looking back over the centuries, the importance of financial accounting cannot be overlooked. As civilisations and empires (as well as multinational businesses) increase in complexity, their checks and balances have needed to keep up – both to provide accountability and to ensure the system is working as it should.  But when practiced poorly or unchecked, […]

All finance teams know the pain that comes with matching transaction data – your bank statement and general ledger transactions for example. Two data sources are seldom easy to compare – especially in different formats, date layouts, transactions and key account numbers, it is rarely a case of lining each up side-by-side to check transactions […]

A timely and stress-free monthly financial close is about advancing some and postponing other reconciliations out of the tight schedule. And still getting the figures right. Every monthly close schedule looks the same for many of us. From one day to the next, each task and account is tightly scheduled in, and any disruption of […]

The pressure for faster reporting of the monthly figures (i.e. to do away with the monthly close reconciliations in no time) seems to constantly increase. Beware, what you may consider ‘the best of resources’, as they may fall short and fall down, leading to unacceptable levels of compliance. Normal accounting operations are in the most […]

The six questions every financial close detective should ask themselves: Who, When, What, Why, Where and How? Tackling account reconciliations is often a lot like being a world-class detective; erroneous account items often seem to hide from prying eyes. Then we need the best possible methods to root them out. How would Sherlock Holmes, arguably […]

From Excel to excellence for the month-end close reconciliation process. As a financial accounting professional, it is almost certain you will have been using Microsoft Excel spreadsheets during the month end close process. It is also extremely likely you will have experienced problems with them too! Over the last thirty-odd years, spreadsheets have become a […]