The finance team is the heart of every business. It is responsible for keeping you within budget, discovering cost-cutting opportunities, and growing your profitability.
As a result, you need to ensure your teams can work productively, especially in post-COVID times. Here are a few steps you can take to ensure your finance team never has a chance to complain.
Monitor Expenses in Real-Time
Your finance department wastes countless hours every month trying to match transactions and invoices. On top of that, you can never rule out inaccuracies that come with human processes.
Businesses should monitor spending in real-time to make finance teams more productive. You can use automated tools to track your expenses as they are made.
The process will ensure your accountants don’t waste time validating what you spent. Rather, they can rely on real-time data to make accurate forecasts and improve your bottom line.
Eliminate Manual Data Entry
A typical employee spends 60 hours every month doing repetitive tasks you can easily automate. That also applies to your finance processes, which involve a lot of manual work.
Therefore, your team has to enter data at different places instead of focusing on saving tax.
The way ahead is to embrace automation to empower your finance staff. They can stop performing manual tasks and have a tool match invoices and enter data.
The time your finance team saves can then be spent to find more cost-saving opportunities.
Facilitate Optimum Collaboration
Many businesses had shifted to working from home during COVID-19. Most of them are continuing to do so, while others have adopted a blended approach.
Therefore, the onus is on the management to ensure seamless collaboration between finance staff. You should provide all the tools to help your team brainstorm and solve problems together.
The list of tools can include professional communication options like Slack or Zoom. You can also provide project management tools like Jira or Trello for everyone to stay on the same page.
Additionally, conduct weekly standups where everyone can share updates and feel a part of the team.
Maintain a Strategic Focus
Focusing on day-to-day tasks or short-term goals is not how you make the most of your finance team. Rather, they should concentrate on the bigger picture and an overarching strategy.
Post-COVID, many businesses are suffering from a cash crunch. As a result, the finance department has to focus on high-level goals like improving operational efficiency. In addition, the responsibility of areas like optimizing supply chain value through cost efficiency is now finance’s forte.
The leadership should stay in close contact with financial decision-makers to sail past COVID’s troubled waters. They should help finance professionals with all information and insight required to drive operations ahead.
Facilitate Insight Generation
The finance team works with the leadership to enable business-wide growth. Your finance department will help you unearth challenges and provide solutions to mitigate and budget for them.
Therefore, you need to ensure your finance staff has accurate data and powerful insights to drive meaningful changes.
Monitoring your expenses in real-time will allow you to spot patterns and trends with a thorough analysis. However, you should also use the power of analytics to generate vital insights.
Your accounting software can provide vital clues to your finance professionals. You can also use standalone payment intelligence tools to get a more holistic picture of where you stand. Plus, ensure your finance staff has access to these analytics for better decision-making.
Encourage Better Forecasting
One of the most important tasks of the finance team is to forecast accurately. You can help your team forecast better by adopting automation where you can. Real-time monitoring will also provide solid data and visibility for improved predictions.
Additionally, make forecasting a regular affair with rolling predictions for the next 12 – 15 months. With some practice, you will be able to gain full control of your finances.
Do everything in your power to ensure your finance staff has all the resources to work. Free them from daily repetitive tasks and help them focus on guiding financial decisions. Go for automation and conserve resources to make way for more productivity. You can also try Mesh to empower your finance teams to make better decisions and drive meaningful insights.