Top-5 Ways Digital Workers Can Speed Up Monthly Close & Reporting
August 2, 2022 – Scott Eddleman, Head of Product Marketing
Finance and accounting departments continue to face challenges that compromise financial performance and compliance. From workforce shortages, regulatory changes, siloed business processes, and a patchwork of technology - the accounting function is becoming more complicated and prone to risk than ever before.
Many senior managers tell us that the record-to-report (R2R) process is their department’s most complex and labor-intensive area - and draws frequent scrutiny from executive leaders, investors, and other stakeholders.
Closing and reporting is a tricky process
Period close and reporting is a complicated process that involves finance and operational teams across multiple business units and relies on an array of financial systems and office productivity documents.
For large businesses, the controller group may struggle with unorganized data collection and reconciliation processes across the enterprise. It must be a finely-tuned and well-orchestrated set of activities. But with any human-intensive process, mistakes and delays become the norm rather than the exception.
Along with data accuracy, Financial Close Cycle Time is a crucial performance benchmark closely monitored by the CFO. This is the average number of business days it takes a finance and accounting team to close the books and submit finalized financial reports to management and regulatory authorities at the end of the accounting period.
It’s possible to automate the R2R process
High-performing organizations take 4-5 days to complete the process, while lower performers take 10+ days. Teams on the low-performing end can improve results by implementing standardized procedures, enforcing internal controls - and, most importantly - automating as much of the process as possible.
For years, finance and accounting teams have employed some form of automation, but many use it as a point solution with limited impact on the overall R2R function. This is where a new generation of robotic process automation (RPA) comes into play. We call it Gen2 RPA, and it delivers transformational results to the broader accounting function - not just a handful of flimsy transactional fixes.
Gen2 RPA connects deeper into any of your applications - and brings secure and infinitely scalable digital workers to life to automate your most complex R2R processes - with no licensing fees and a simple pay-as-you-use pricing model.
Top-5 use cases that transform R2R performance
Here are five examples of how Gen2 RPA digital workers can automate more of your end-to-end record-to-report processes, so you spend less time collecting, sorting, and scrubbing data - and more time delivering accurate forecasts and operational excellence.
#1 Collect Data
- Establish standardized templates and automated processes to pull financial data from multiple business unit systems across the organization.
- Set up triggers, actions, and conditional logic to ensure data is collected, reviewed, and approved on time.
#2 Scrub & Reconcile Data
- Capture, index, and search for anomalies and errors.
- Alert responsible teams of possible errors.
- Organize aggregated data into structured tables.
#3 Generate Reports
- Map data into standardized financial report templates.
- Prompt, collect, and process edits from business unit controllers and financial managers.
- Package reports and prepare tax system entries.
#4 Distribute Reports to Stakeholders
- Release the reports to the financial reporting team.
- Map data into 10K or 10Q templates.
- Prompt, collect, and process edits from business heads and the CFO.
- Push reports to the audit committee for filing approval, then submit to the SEC.
#5 Prepare Management Reports for Analysis
- Map data into standardized management reports.
- Prompt, collect, and process edits / comments from executive stakeholders.
- Approve and submit management reports to appropriate parties.
Gen2 RPA digital workers reliably automate finance and accounting teams’ most critical R2R processes - to accelerate close and reporting activities, reduce costs and errors, and strengthen financial governance and controls. In addition, you can improve employee satisfaction and retention by assigning repetitive and unrewarding tasks to digital workers.
Robocorp is the industry leader in Gen2 RPA and brings digital workers to life so your finance team can work smarter, not harder. We deliver 80% increased speed and elasticity - no licensing fees and a consumption-based pricing model. In addition, we complement your existing technology investments and provide positive ROI and TCO data at a glance.