Communicating with shareholders is about capital – the ability to access either equity or debt at the lowest possible cost. By understanding investor motivation and maintaining relationships within the investment community, companies are strategically positioned to address operational funding issues proactively and thus can exercise greater control over the capital formation process. By identifying sources of capital, world-class companies can maintain capital structures through a mix of long-term debt and equity funding options at the lowest possible cost.
One of our leading practices to consider for your accounts payable process is to develop strategic business alliances with suppliers and involve them in developing better ways to process accounts payable.
Key Performance Measures Improving the Process
An effective business process is built on a set of well-defined and clearly-stated business objectives. These key objectives articulate the ideal performance results that the company expects from that process. To monitor a business process so that it stays focused on reaching the key objectives, the company chooses appropriate performance measures. In fact, careful selection of the performance measures takes a company a long way toward improving a business process. Thus, to build and then continually improve an effective business process, a company establishes:
Most organizations continue to invest a significant number of hours every month in a particular set of activities related to calculating, manipulating and validating critical financial reporting data using spreadsheets. Organizations should be asking whether this level of effort represents incremental value to the financial reporting process and whether this actually does needs to be done in spreadsheets.
A fast, close-the-books process provides multiple benefits for the finance function and for the company. First, a fast close process creates more time for finance professionals to focus on strategic activities for the company, such as identifying warnings in financial data and providing the corporation's financial direction. It also reduces the cost of the finance function, since fewer hours are needed to close the books. And it demonstrates that the company's controls and systems are well organized; the company sends the message to its competitors and to the investment community that it is expert at performing business processes.
Financial consolidation is the process of combining the financial results of several subsidiary companies into the combined financial results of the parent company. During this process, business complexities arise, questions must be answered, and long hours are often clocked by employees in the accounting and finance departments. It’s also a good time to think about how to improve the internal control structure to keep the process running smoothly.
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