Email. What a wonderful thing. Being able to instantly communicate has made our work so much more productive… …or has it? Research by the Warwick Business School found that, since 1973, productivity had only risen by 2%. That means that despite all our technological advances we are barely more productive than we were forty years […]

Most of us have been there: that moment when you receive an audit request. It is enough to make even the strictest of finance manager’s blood turn cold. But do you really have anything to fear?  Audits can be a cause for alarm in any organisation. You could be the most confident finance team in […]

One of the final hurdles you will have to leap to achieve a perfect month-end financial close is your archiving. By law you are required to hold at least 6 years’ worth of financial records. That’s a hell of a lot of data to keep hold of, and finding the data you need within all […]

One of the hurdles on the path towards a perfect month-end financial close is gaining a clear overview of complete and incomplete tasks. Ideally, we would be able to quickly and easily spot tasks that are still outstanding so we can assign them. Just so as we tuck in at night, we will have no […]

In our mission to pin-down the perfect month-end financial close – one where account reconciliation is quick, easy and accurate – it is necessary to look at every aspect of the monthly close procedure. Our next stop is the approval process. Most accounting teams use the ‘four-eyed’ principle for account preparation and reconciliation approval. That […]

There are two common ways to specify account balances: by using a new Excel document for each account or by using a new spreadsheet tab for each account. Both have pros and cons, but they have one thing in common: you will find yourself confronted by the supporting documentation devil. The devil is in the […]

During the month-end close process you will need to explain the balances on each account. Using Excel or a similar tool for this task can turn it in to a real beast of a problem. So how do we tame the beast of account specification?  There are two distinct approaches to doing account specification in […]