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The Financial Transformation Maze – Developing A Roadmap To Help CFOs

Posted by Trevor Lovegrove on Tue, Sep 18, 2018 @ 09:11 AM

By 2020, corporate finance professionals are going to have some pretty big challenges on their hands. Compliance requirements are changing, and the inherent limitations of existing legacy finance and ERP systems are going to be at threat.

There’s a maze of complexity that’s becoming ever harder to navigate, but your competitors are finding smart ways to get through it.

And that’s a problem for CFOs who need to get up to speed on new-generation systems and best practices for business transformation. Doing nothing isn’t an option. You need to start moving – and fast.

The financial transformation maze – developing a map to help CFOs

1-CFOCommon challenges for CFOs

There are a couple of main challenges I see CFOs having to get their heads around in the next couple of years:

  • It takes too long to reconcile, analyze and report on financial data.
  • The accuracy and consolidation of financial data difficult and time-consuming to achieve.

 

In other words,

  • You’re grinding your gears just to pull together the basic financial data needed for month-end & year-end close processes.
  • You’re wasting time reconciling reports because of conflicting data sets.
  • You’re stuck when you need quick ad-hoc and agile reporting to support operational decision-making.
  • Your current data infrastructure makes it almost impossible to predict business performance.

 None of this is satisfactory. And that’s not the end of it.

2-compliance

Compliance and regulatory changes

On top of the challenges of getting timely, accurate data, you have to think about looming compliance changes, such as:

  • Revenue Recognition Changes (ASC 606 and IFRS 15) 
  • Lease Accounting Changes (ASC 842 & IFRS 16) 
  • Financial Instruments Impairments & Disclosures (IFRS 9) 

 

While you wrestle with all this, you have to keep your business imperative in mind: to provide the strategic and tactical thinking that supports growth while keeping your competitors from edging you out.

Before you give up in desperation, don’t lose sight of what financial transformation can help you achieve: better client engagement, increased service profitability and lower costs, and streamlined processes.

These are things all ambitious CFOs want to deliver for their organizations. But you need a plan.

3-action-plan

Developing a plan of action for financial transformation

Getting out of this maze of transformation isn’t quick or easy – but the map is at least simple in construction.

Here are my suggested steps:

 

  1. Think about your starting point – take stock of your current capabilities. What are the pain points holding you back?
  2. Plot the roadmap – work out which platform or solution can help you make progress, and assess the funding needed.
  3. Start moving – proceed to implementation now. It can take 2–3 years for a financial transformation plan to march to completion.
  4. Monitor, manage and adjust course continually - A well-planned implementation should yield incremental benefits throughout the process.

Download Bramasol's newest eBook to learn more.

4-plot

How to plot the roadmap

You’ve already been feeling the pain of not having accurate and timely data. Now you want to draw up your plans to sort it out. What to do?

Good news: there’s a growing set of tech solutions that will help you keep on top of regulatory requirements while also cracking the chronic pains of dealing with inconsistent data.

Here’s what to look for:

  • Real-time and predictive analytics – engage with your customers and optimize cashflows.
  • Combined core ERP and finance systems – use a modular approach to provide best-of-breed capabilities in multiple streams.
  • In-memory consolidation of data and transactions – dump the islands of disparate data and make month-end and year-end closing easier.
  • ‘Single version of the truth’ – end the era of letting opinions overrule data. Get data that everyone can agree on to help you speed up and improve the way tactics are decided.
  • Intuitive user interface – access your data through unified systems (including mobile) that are built to support regular reporting but that also cater for ongoing management and ad-hoc decision-making.
  • Cloud-based implementation – reduce time-to-operation, keep costs down and scale easily.

You could spend a long time researching financial transformation solutions and tie yourself up in knots working out what’s right for your organization - or you can work with a partner that knows the landscape.


Many of those solutions tackle some of the above issues to a greater or lesser extent. But do you and your staff really have the time to research multiple pieces to the puzzle and to assembly them for your specific needs? So, what’s right for you?

S/4HANA – a trusted route through the financial transformation maze

At Bramasol, we collaborate with busy CFOs at companies with revenues in nine figures (hundreds of millions) or above.

We’ve found that they want a reliable partner that looks to simplify processes and supports them throughout the financial maze described above. We give our clients simple real-time and embedded analytics, all built on the cloud and with intuitive interfaces that support the modern mobile user.

This is where the Digital Core embodied by S/4HANA comes in – it addresses all of the above needs and more besides. And we think it’s the best roadmap available for today’s forward-thinking CFO.

Many clients have trusted us to help them overcome their financial transformation challenges.

Download Bramasol's newest eBook to learn more.

 

New eBook: S/4HANA is the Future: Understanding Why and How to Get There Download Now

 

 

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Topics: CFO, financial transformation, s4/hana cloud, Financial Innovation, S4HANA

New Webinar: ASC 842 Leasing Disclosures: More Than Compliance – Insights To Action

Posted by Bramasol Leasing Administration Team on Mon, Sep 17, 2018 @ 06:07 AM

If you thought ASC 842 Disclosures were just to make the SEC happy, think again. Leveraging Bramasol’s Disclosure reports and analytics on SAP S/4 can provide you with insights into your lease portfolio. Manage costs, understand interest rates and view your portfolios globally so you can have real insights into your leased asset portfolio.

Join us on September 27, 2018 for this timely webinar:

ASC 842 Leasing Disclosures: More Than Compliance – Insights To Action

September 27, 2018 - 10-11 AM PDT - 1-2 PM EDT

Register Here to Attend

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Note: video recordings of all Bramasol webinars are made available to registrants so you may want to register even if you're unable to attend the live sessions.

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Topics: leasing, ASC 842

SAP S/4HANA Strategies for Success - One-Day Summit, Oct 25, Orange County, CA

Posted by Bramasol Financial Transformation Team on Tue, Sep 11, 2018 @ 06:53 AM

Bramasol is proud to co-sponsor this important one-day summit on Strategies for Success with S/4HANA.

Your SAP S/4HANA Journey: Strategies for Success 
One-Day Summit, October 25, 2018, Orange County, CA

You have heard how SAP S/4HANA® can empower your organization to run live — and connect all parts of your business to break free from the business boundaries and technology limitations of the past. In this 1-day leadership summit, go one level deeper, and learn how to concretely adopt SAP S/4HANA to achieve higher business success and competitive advantage.

 

YourSAP-S4-Journey

 

Hear from industry thought leaders and subject matter experts from Bramasol and SAP to:

  • Understand what it means to be a digital business and how Intelligent ERP can empower your transformation
  • Examine how to accomplish the critical steps — from defining your business use cases to blueprinting your desired processes and outcomes — that pave the path to successful SAP S/4HANA adoption
  • Break into groups with your peers and implementation experts for interactive discussions on how to set a path to concretely adopt SAP S/4HANA, and the implications and benefits that SAP S/4HANA has for lines of business and IT teams
  • Hear directly from an SAP S/4HANA early adopter on how the company planned for and implemented SAP S/4HANA, the challenges they faced, and the business outcomes

Admission is FREE for select customers and seating is limited.   ApplytoAttend

 

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Topics: S/4HANA

Compliance is Not a Sprint; It’s a Marathon.  Your Strategy Needs to Go the Distance

Posted by David Fellers on Fri, Sep 7, 2018 @ 06:30 AM

Over recent years, companies throughout the world are experiencing a series of major changes in regulatory and compliance mandates that are disrupting existing accounting and business processes. 

Implementing new revenue recognition standards (ASC 606 and IFRS 15) has been the key emphasis during the run up to the January 2018 deadline.  Now, lease accounting (ASC 842 and IFRS 16) has taken the main spotlight with less than four months until the January 2019 compliance deadline.

There’s nothing like some hard deadlines to help focus our minds and energy, however for the sake of your company’s future, it’s important to not see these dates as short-term finish lines.  Instead, these deadlines on the calendar are actually just milestones in the longer run toward a culture of sustainable compliance that is woven into the core fabric of your . Taking the long view also enables companies to institute a Comply, Optimize and Transform strategic approach that leverages analytics and data integration to turn compliance into a competitive advantage.

In short, compliance is not a sprint.  It is a marathon and you need to view it as such.

You can’t just treat compliance as a short all-out sprint in your street clothes, after which everything goes back to normal.  This approach will just leave you and your organization exhausted and still well short of achieving important long-term compliance integration goals.

 StartingLine

 

For example, it is way too soon to breathe a sigh of relief and declare victory over revenue recognition. Although new standards were effective on January 1, 2018 for most public companies with calendar year-end closing, the mandated disclosure and reporting requirements are continuing to drive ongoing ripples of change throughout most organizations.

Those long-run minded companies that invested in purpose-built, comprehensive RevRec solutions, such as SAP Revenue Accounting and Reporting (RAR), have proactively laid the foundation for continuous compliance that enables tight integration with advanced analytics and core finance processes.

On the other hand, sprint-minded companies that focused instead on minimizing disruptions by using “solutions” such as offline spreadsheets or other non-integrated RevRec software are now facing even harder choices ahead.  This means that every quarterly or annual reporting cycle going forward will perpetuate the inherent hassles of their short-term thinking.  Instead of smoothly extracting the needed RevRec information directly from finance operations and keep a steady pace over the long run, CFOs and their staff in these companies find themselves running that same sprint over and over again.

Even some choices that seem safe in the short run can turn out to be dead ends. Take for example, companies running SAP ECC environments that opted to use SD RevRec in ECC as their quick road to revenue recognition compliance.  Now, as they look ahead to the future of SAP with S/4 HANA, these companies have discovered that SD RevRec will no longer be supported. Oops, dead end!

If you’re facing this specific challenge of how to get from SD RevRec to RAR supported in S/4 HANA, you should check out Bramasol’s upcoming webinar on September 20, 2018 titled “SD RevRec is Dead. What Now?”  Listen as our RevRec Center of Excellence experts talk about the right sequence – RAR first or S/4 first, or is it simultaneous. What are my data considerations and how can I ensure a smooth transition?

Viewed from the big picture, trying to run an endless series of sprints puts a lot more wear and tear on your organization when compared to setting out with a marathon strategy from the start and charting out a pace that considers all of the hills, obstacles, curves and straightaways that must be traversed to achieve your end goals.

But take heart; even if you started out with a sprinting mindset, with a good understanding of long-term compliance strategies and effective coaching from a knowledgeable partner that knows the terrain ahead, you can effectively shift to a well-planned long-term strategy built to keep on winning over the long run.

Marathon

 

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Topics: CEO perspective

New Webinar: SD RevRec is Dead.  Now What? Join Us on September 20, 2018 to Find Out.

Posted by Bramasol RevRec Team on Tue, Sep 4, 2018 @ 07:56 AM

With the deadline for implementing ASC 606 and IFRS 15 now behind us for most public companies, a lot of CFOs and accounting staff have breathed a sigh of relief. 

However, for those companies running SAP ECC who chose the short-cut of using SD RevRec, there are still some big challenges ahead.

Even some choices that seem safe in the short run can turn out to be dead ends.

Now, as companies that took the SD RevRec "short-cut" look ahead to the future of SAP with S/4 HANA, they are discovering that SD RevRec will no longer be supported. Oops, dead end!

If you’re facing this specific challenge of how to get from SD RevRec in ECC to RAR supported in S/4 HANA, you should plan on attending Bramasol’s upcoming webinar on September 20, 2018.

Titled “SD RevRec is Dead. What Now?” this webinar will provide a roadmap for moving from your soon-to-be-gone SD RevRec implementation to a more sustainable Revenue Accounting and Reporting (RAR) solution that is integrated with S/4 HANA.

Listen as our RevRec Center of Excellence experts talk about the right sequence – RAR first or S/4 first, or is it simultaneous. What are my data considerations and how can I ensure a smooth transition?

Click below to register and join us.

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Note: a recording of the webinar will be made available to all registrants so you may want to sign up even if you're not going to be able to attend the live session.

 

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Topics: revrec hot-tips

New Webinar Video: Bramasol's "Secret Sauce" from RevRec Implementations

Posted by Bramasol RevRec Team on Tue, Aug 28, 2018 @ 07:09 AM

RevRecReady-HotTip-12-1The video is now available of the most recent session in Bramasol's monthly series on Revenue Recognition. 

Recorded on August 22, 2018, "Revenue Accounting Implementation: Secret Sauce" provides a wide-ranging look at key lessons learned, best practices and implementation tips based on our industry leading track record of RevRec implementation. 

Hands-on experts from our Center of Excellence share their unique perspective on issues that have been encountered while working with more SAP RAR customers than any other consulting organization. 

As the recognized leader in SAP RAR and innovator of purpose-built solutions for rapid compliance, Bramasol has more experience than anyone else in the RevRec sector.

Think your RevRec requirements are unique? Do you wonder if you are really getting the right picture of your revenues or using SAP to maximum advantage? 

Watch this webinar video to hear what others are doing in their SAP RAR implementations.

Bramasol's Revenuw Accounting Implementation Recored Webinar Aug 2018Listen in as our experts answer participants' questions and drill down to explain how we have helped customers meet their revenue recognition requirements using Bramasol’s “secret sauce”. 

 Watch the Video: Revenue Accounting Implemenation "Secret Sauce"

 

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Topics: revrec hot-tips

Watch how Bramasol played a vital role in hard transition from ASC605 to IFRS 15  for a Pioneer in electronic and design automation company

Posted by Bramasol RevRec Team on Thu, Aug 16, 2018 @ 06:01 AM

A pioneer in electronic design and automation and with a presence in more than seven countries, our featured customer offers bundles of hardware, software, support & training to industrial customers. The Company was running ECC 6.0 with SD Revenue Recognition and was in the process of implementing SAP RAR 1.3 to support a mandated transition to IFRS 15. The project delivers a "hard" transition from ASC605 to IFRS 15, running RAR 1.3 SP02 for ten company codes around the world. The deployment includes a migration of 26000 in-flight contracts.

 

 

As the clear leaders in design and implementation of Revenue Recognition solutions, Bramasol was the natural choice. Bramasol took this task on "In flight" from another system integrator and provided, A group of assets- a dedicated team including A RAR Project Manager, A Solution Architect, RAR Consultants and Developers to have smooth transition and best solution. One of the challenges was to secure the organization's investment in the prior development work. As there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to this complex scenario, Bramasol could limit the disruption of the integrator change caused to the customer.

Customer Story World pioneer in Electronic Design and AutomationPlease speak to us if you’re facing any transitional issues or implementation challenges, simply Request a demo. If you have a challenging or complex RevRec undertaking or just need the pioneer in SAP Revenue Accounting, do what the Fortune 500 do… Contact Bramasol

 

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Topics: revenue recognition, SAP Revenue Accounting and Reporting, Customer Story, ASC606, IFRS15

New eBook: Transitioning to ASC 842 using the Portfolio Approach to Group Leases

Posted by Bramasol Leasing Administration Team on Mon, Aug 13, 2018 @ 11:11 AM

LeaseAdministration-HotTipWith less than five months remaining until January 2019, when public companies have to comply with new leasing standards, ASC 842 and IFRS 16, your implementation plans should already be well underway.

Even if you haven't started yet, there is still a small window of time to have a successful Q1 2019 implementation to enable reporting 45 days after March 31, 2019 - but only if you proactively begin now.

This new eBook from Bramasol's leasing experts drills down for a detailed look at key issues and best practices regarding usage of the Portfolio Approach to implementation of the ASC 842 Lease Accounting Standard.

new ebook on Transitioning to ASC 842, using the Portfolio Approach to Group Leases

This is beneficial by grouping leases of assets in the same class that is comprised assets with similar lease terms and discount rates.An entity may apply the Portfolio Approach to a group of leases within an asset class when doing so does not materially change the financial statement presentation when compared to applying the individual lease methodology.

Key topics addressed in the eBook include:
  • When can an entity apply the Portfolio Approach under ASC 842
  • Application of the Portfolio Approach in determining the Lease Term
  • Application of the Portfolio Approach in the Incremental Borrowing Rate
  • Practical Considerations for the Implementation of Portfolio Approach at Your Company

 

Click below to download the ebook.

Download the eBook: Transitioning to ASC 842 using the Portfolio Approach to Group Leases

 

 

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Topics: Leasing-Hot-Tips, ASC 842

Building Finance Innovation upon a strong Compliance Foundation

Posted by David Fellers on Sat, Aug 11, 2018 @ 04:43 PM

We can all agree that any physical building needs to have a strong foundation to assure safety of the occupants and sufficient resilience to maintain structural integrity against external forces, such as wind, flood, earthquakes and other potentially damaging events.

StrongFoundationFor CFOs facing the challenges of dynamically changing regulatory requirements, establishing a strong Compliance Foundation is also vital for avoiding the risks of non-compliance, such as legal sanctions, while also ensuring adaptability for accommodating ongoing changes driven by both internal and external forces.

Some companies view new accounting standards as specific painful topics that need to be handled with ad hoc, standalone solutions.  The thinking behind this approach is to “limit the impacts” and minimize changes to other related financial and operational processes.

However, this line of thinking is inherently shortsighted.

Over years of helping many companies on their journeys to compliance with new standards such as ASC 606, IFRS 15, ASC 842, IFRS 16 and others, Bramasol’s experts have found that embracing the changes and making them an integral part of core financial operations is a much more effective and efficient approach. 

Rather than trying to limit the impacts of changing compliance regulations, forward-thinking companies proactively incorporate them as key elements in the central foundation for all related processes.

FoundationDetailAt Bramasol, we firmly believe that Compliance Innovation Empowers Overall Finance Innovation.

Every new compliance program and solution should be treated as an additional important building block to be tightly integrated into the underlying core foundation, and bound together using connective “mortar” such as comprehensive analytics, shared in-memory data sets, agile reporting, configurable dashboards, and built-in disclosure processes.

When deploying compliance solutions that should integrate seamlessly within comprehensive business processes, we always start by looking for solutions that are designed to work with core ERP and Finance systems.  For example, SAP Revenue Accounting and Reporting (RAR) is integrated with SAP FICO and has the flexibility to act as an agnostic engine for revenue recognition with other ERP environments. On the lease accounting front, SAP Contract and Lease Management provides a compliance solution that integrates across existing SAP platforms and directly accesses core data sets.  Looking forward, both of these solutions are designed to integrate with S/4HANA (on-premise or cloud) and Bramasol is proactively providing analytics and disclosure solutions to leverage these integration opportunities.

To help with rapid deployment while still maintaining tight integration, we’ve created purpose-built compliance and disclosure solutions, including our Rapid Leasing Compliance Solution and Rapid RevRecReady Compliance Solution.  Both solutions expedite the implementation process by leveraging pre-built capabilities while providing robust compliance coverage for the relevant regulations.

In keeping with the overall philosophy of building a solid and comprehensive Compliance Foundation, all our purpose-built solutions make use of core SAP Cloud Analytics and data sources, which minimizes duplication, enhances productivity and eliminates isolated pockets of data.

As illustrated below, by building all your compliance activities on a solid foundation of SAP S/4HANA, SAP Cloud Analytics and agile dashboard technologies, each pillar of compliance and finance innovation can be directly integrated with core processes and data.  This makes the entire structure more efficient and improves the coherence between various compliance efforts and ongoing operational activities.

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If you’d like to learn more about this approach to building a comprehensive Compliance Foundation, visit here to request a consultation.

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Topics: finance innovation, CEO perspective

Join Bramasol at SAP Controlling Conference in San Diego, CA Sept. 17-20, 2018

Posted by Bramasol Financial Transformation Team on Tue, Aug 7, 2018 @ 05:54 AM

FinancialTransformation-HotTipPlan ahead to join Bramasol and other SAP Professionals at SAP Controlling 2018 conference in San Diego, CA on September 17-20, 2018.

Attend detailed sessions on SAP management accounting including the latest functionality such as S/4HANA. Attendees include end-users, managers, Controllers, CFO's and consultants dealing with master data, transactions, configuration, and reporting for managers.

Conference tracks are grouped together by type of session, as follows:

CTA Controlling-1
  • SAP Reporting/SAP Planning
  • SAP Controlling
  • SAP Product Costing
  • SAP S/4HANA / SAP Material Ledger

Bramasol is proud to be a participating sponsor of SAP Controlling 2018 and we're looking forward to sharing our latest financial controlling and compliance solutions along with hands-on demos of our transformational analytics and S4HANA capabilities.

 

Click here to book a meeting with Bramasol experts at SAP Controlling 2018

 Join Bramasol at SAP Controlling conferance San Diego Sept 17-20 2018

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Topics: FinancialTransformation-Hot-Tips, S4HANA, SAP Controlling, SAP Events

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New eBook: S/4HANA is the Future: Understanding Why and How to Get There Download Now
Download the eBook: Transitioning to ASC 842 using the Portfolio Approach to Group Leases

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