Industry: Business Services
Location: Downers Grove, IL
GL System: Dynamics GP
“It was Finance developing it all [monthly reports for departments], so it was a task that was really tapping a lot of our resources. [Centage] has been an immense time-saver.”
“The number of errors reduced immensely. When a line item needed to be changed previously by ten percent, it easily took a couple hours. Now it takes a couple minutes and its very simple for us to do.”
Ease and Flexibility Transform Budgeting Process, Providing Deeper Analysis and Significant Time Savings
The Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA), a non-profit trade association, issues professional certifications for the information technology industry. It is considered one of the industry’s top trade associations. Headquartered in the greater Chicago area, with numerous locations around the world, CompTIA supports IT professionals through their education, certification, advocacy, and philanthropy initiatives.
CompTIA’s budgeting and planning solution, Microsoft Forecaster, had a number of shortfalls that were critical for CompTIA to resolve. For years, internationally based users were frequently locked out of the software on the server in Chicago – struggling to simply access or record their budget numbers. The application couldn’t roll forward prior budgets or utilize actuals. CFO Brian Laffey lamented, “You always had to build budgets from the ground up.”
Creating unique reports consumed Laffey’s finance team every month. Specific parameters that each manager wanted to see had to be identified monthly for the report view to be created. The process involved downloading data to Excel, filtering and sorting the data, and then individually creating each report.
CompTIA began the search for a more dynamic, flexible solution that could better manage their international operations and address the need for more budget accuracy and analytical reports so they could better manage their business.
After an extensive search, CompTIA selected Centage’s easy-to-use, scalable cloud-based budgeting and forecasting solution, as the clear winner that not only met but exceeded their requirements and expectations. Centage’s platform for budgeting, planning, forecasting and analytics delivers a level of sophisticated financial intelligence typically only enjoyed by large enterprises, but through Centage now made accessible for small- and medium-sized businesses. The platform allows finance teams to integrate data from multiple sources, easily build and manipulate driver-based financial models, predict balance sheet and cash flow performance with accurate and automated forecasts, as well as run what-if scenarios to test the impacts of strategic decisions.
The solution’s formula-free environment gives Laffey confidence that the budgets he and his team develop are reliable and accurate. It’s strict adherence to the chart of accounts alleviates concerns about data integrity by catching potential coding errors while increasing the value of the plans developed with one-to-one comparisons between budgets and actuals.
The new solution offers the flexibility for users to enter exact counts, dollars, and percentages in value fields, while in the past users spent their already scarce time making trial-and-error guesses to get to the value that they wanted to budget for. For example, if a manager wanted to budget 500 units sold of a particular item, they had to enter a percentage value of an overall figure rather than the exact 500-unit amount, making the process cumbersome and error-prone.
The ability to collaborate with other CompTIA executives in their native currencies and in U.S. dollars streamlines the workflow and provides the platform that Laffey needed to more easily digest financial data from both headquarters and abroad. Multi currency reporting provides increased accountability at the local level as the users take additional ownership of the budgets they submit.
Centage’s cloud-based solution provides the global access they required along with a quick and easy implementation and a short training timeline.