This was a Deep Dive Live session with Generation CFO, IBCS and XLCubed.
How many finance teams believe they deliver ‘best-in-class’ reports to their organisation?
In our discussions with CFOs and senior finance professionals few of them are convinced that they do, whether this is due to what they deliver or how it is prepared.
In this interactive Deep Dive Live with GenCFO, IBCS and XLCubed, we discussed how and why organisations fall short of expectations when reporting and how this can be quickly and easily addressed.
1 minute summary
The full video recording
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We covered the following key topics:
- Improving data content, format and access
- The need for visualisation and story-telling
- The benefits of consistency
- Overcoming the barriers to change
- Delivering change quickly
Charts and Graphics
How good are the reports that your company are producing and what are the subsequent actions taken as part of the reporting process?
GenerationCFO recently carried out some research on LinkedIn, asking our community how they would rate the quality of reporting within their organisation. Considering the importance of reporting on understanding where a company is and how they can make decisions, only 30% of respondents thought their reporting was “decent” or “good”. 70% of respondents said “average” or “below”.
Reports are meaningless unless they prompt decisive action.
Clarity and consistency of reporting
This image is the result from a Google search for “management dashboards”. This provides a great example of comparability and clarity being lost. Although there is no comment on the quality of what these dashboards can provide, every single one looks different. Bringing in consistency and clarity by the adoption of simple design rules can aid greatly in the presentation of information
Applying these rules for reporting has the potential to create clarity and consistency. By creating a visual language across reporting can aid understanding, clarity and consistency.; this can be across different reports or within a single report.
The IBCS has collected a series of rules for the consistent design of reporting which is accessible at IBCS.com.
Barriers to change
There is always internal inertia to moving away from the norm, the “we have always done it this way” mindset. The recreation and correcting of extant reports can take time, and a change of mindset is needed. Taking time for collaboration, discussion and agreement for new terms is essential for standardisation.
A lack of the right tools for the ability to produce reports may require a new technology solution. Or perhaps finding a way to deliver the same standards with what technology is available.
XLCubed run a UK training session in conjunction with IBCS, check out further details here.
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