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5 Barriers to BI Success and How to Overcome Them
By Steve Williams
When used properly, business intelligence (BI) allows companies to leverage the information they already collect to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the processes that drive increased profits. The trick is to integrate the data company-wide, across divisions, something a lot of firms continue to struggle with. In this article, an expert in BI identifies the roadblocks to success and, more critically, how to steer around them.
Turning Budgets into Business
By Jason Porter and Teresa Stephenson, CMA
This is the first in a three-part series that looks at ways to use an Excel-based budget to analyze a company’s performance. The focus here shifts from creating a budget to the tools you will need to convert the budget data into information useful in making policy and operating choices. Part 1 deals with creating a Contribution Margin Income Statement.
Closing the Loop on Closing the Books
By Jeff Adler, CPA
After delineating the essential elements required in closing the books, the author explains the pros and cons of using Excel for the process. It’s available, familiar, and flexible, but there are some problems with security and adding supporting documents, and there’s no automated notification process for workflow alerts. Then he compares the advantages of and obstacles to using integrated, automated applications designed for the close.
Carl Menconi Case Writing Competition
Cashing Out at the Top: Selling a Company with a Bill of Goods
By William F. Miller, CPA
The case study tells the story of a company in the process of being sold. While doing its due diligence, the purchaser comes across several months of weak figures and asks the owner for updated financial projections. To protect his selling price, the owner turns to his president and CFO and asks them to prepare figures that overstate expected revenues. He claims the process doesn’t legally bind him to strictly truthful forecasts. The two officers take different paths preparing their reports.
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