A Business Process Review provides an objective assessment of your business processes’ strengths and weaknesses, with the goal to provide strategies for business process optimization so that you can focus on growing your business.
We involve subject matter experts from the team depending on the client industry, scope of the project, and project objectives and deliverables. Generally, Paul Ursich, Partner-In-Charge of CFO Advisory, leads the interview process with key stakeholders from the client. At least one Manger will join the conversation and help produce the full documentation, including key findings and recommendations. We find it beneficial to bring at least 2 people into the discussions to ensure the most impact in terms of the accuracy of interpretation and insightful recommendations.
A cross-section of key stakeholders from the accounting department are always included. That would be the CFO and/or Controller, Bookkeeper and sometimes administrative staff, depending on their involvement in daily accounting processes. In certain organizations, such as manufacturers with inventory management, it may be beneficial to involve employees who handle data that impacts the accounting system. We also have conversations with members of management and the IT group, who are often responsible for the accounting system, security access and logins.
It really depends on the scope of the project; we tailor and right-size the project scope depending on the stakeholders involved and the deliverable desired. The full process involves conducting interviews and follow-ups, reviewing findings and brainstorming internally, preparing an assessment, and delivering the final report with key findings and recommendations.
Our recommendations involve improving the utilization of people, streamlining processes, and mitigating risk. Typical recommendations include upgrading technology, improving resource allocation, and streamlining operations. We often encounter clients using software that is no longer supported by the provider or clients that do not use their systems to its full potential. We have also assisted clients in the systems selection and implementation processes.
Always expect the unexpected. Business owners sometimes don’t come from a financial background and may not have perspective on the importance of the value add of the accounting function; sometimes client management views the accounting department as a cost center instead of a strategic partner with the ability to deliver key insights into the company’s performance. Some companies may not be as diligent about updating/upgrading software, hiring the right people, or implementing formal processes.
We’ve seen unfortunate scenarios where the CFO or Controller take money from the company or start hiring vendors based on personal relationships opposed to doing what’s in the best interest of the company. When the company lacks strong internal controls and segregation of duties, there is always a risk to business, which is often the case in smaller accounting departments. One advantage of the Business Process Review is that it sheds a spotlight on the inner workings of the accounting department. Our recommendations provide a more in-depth level of checks and balances to prevent the potential of fraudulent activity.
Absolutely. Often times, we see companies struggling to manage or interpret the data they have available to them. Data of poor quality will not provide any insight or value to the company long-term. When we start the process, we request the most recent internal financials and internal management reporting to review the information the company has been working from. We will often modify the management reporting piece to provide clients more relevant KPIs; layering in KPIs with budgets and forecasts provides clients with a more holistic, 360-degree vantage point of their business’s performance. We also focus on quantitative and qualitative measures of performance to ensure we do not rely too heavily on financial performance metrics.
9 out of 10 business process reviews have been directly requested by the CEO or business owner. It’s important that the team members set to be interviewed are fully engaged, aware, and open to the conversations we’re having so that we can make the best recommendations for the business. Other times, we are engaged directly by the CFO or Controller. Situations where we’re able to work hand-in-hand with client management in a trusted advisor role generally result in the most in-depth and comprehensive final reports. We view ourselves as an extension of the client’s internal team and our objective is to provide an independent, thorough and fair evaluation. These types of engagements usually result in the most meaningful and directionally correct recommendations.
Simply reach out if you’d like to schedule a call or in-person meeting. We understand the business aspirations and goals of every business owner are unique and are committed to developing an understanding of yours.
If you answer yes to four or more then we’d recommend you review our FAQs and/or reach out to us to set up an input meeting.