CHAPTER ONEWhy the Continued Focus on the Fiscal Closing Process?

INTRODUCTION: THE FISCAL CLOSING process is one of the most fundamental indicators of the efficiency of your fiscal infrastructure, and is the critical foundation that must be in place before your finance and accounting team can even begin to optimize its role as a true consultative business partner and trusted advisor, assisting in achieving strategic goals and creating shareholder value. Getting accurate and timely fiscal information is critical in today's global market because:

  1. Financial statements are the ultimate scorecard for a company. A company's financial statements reflect the company's business results and trends—its products, services, and macro-fundamental events.
  2. The critical information obtained from fiscal information is used to perform analysis. The absolute numbers in financial statements are of little value for shareholder and investment analysis. These numbers from financial statements must be transformed into meaningful relationships to judge a company's fiscal performance and determine its fiscal health at the current time. The resulting ratios and indicators must be viewed over extended periods to spot trends and predict performance.

If your finance organization is bogged down in a never-ending closing process, they have little time to focus on enhanced reporting or analytics. Visibility to accurate fiscal information and underlying operating metrics are critical to your management team ...

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