Data & Systems ConsultancyExploiting technology to reduce costs, mitigate risks & provide business insight

We are passionate advocates for the greater use of information technology across businesses of all sizes to reduce costs, mitigate risks & improve business insight.

Our director has extensive experience both managing general accounting departments & processes and working on major financial systems projects as a senior business analyst and data specialist.

We can assist with:

Accounting System Selection

If you are spending too much time writing up books, typing invoices and chasing debts we help to take control by computerising your accounts system. Accounting software – and there are many systems on the market - will save hours of hard work leaving you more time to deal with the more important areas of the business.

However, some systems:

  • may not cope effectively with high volumes of transactions or products.
  • may not support your stock valuation process.
  • may be less suitable for a manufacturing concern.

And some software suppliers targeting a global market may:

  • not address specific national reporting requirements or,
  • be incapable of integration with pre-existing systems without costly bespoke interfaces.

We understand the pros & cons that may exist and can help you in your selection of the right system for your needs.

Associated Specialist Applications

There are a range of specialist applications that can typically work with your accounting system to address a range of issues. In the case of the larger companies providing accounting systems these can comprise whole ecosystems of applications.

Appropriately selected applications can:

  • Overcome various limitations imposed by the accounting system
  • Improve the efficiency of financial data input and workflows
  • Provide specialist integration with tills, payment terminals or ecommerce sites.
  • Increase security in some processes such as expense claim authorisation
  • Provide a more effective platform for customer relationship management

By understanding you & your business, we can assist you to select a cost-effective solution for your requirements.

Data Structural Design & Configuration

Appropriate data structural design & configuration improves both the efficiency & accuracy of bookkeeping and the relevance of information for management

We can supply services in this area as part of a software selection and set up process – or as a standalone review of your existing platform.

A new accounting system will typically require configuration:

  • Default account codes may not support the needs of your business
  • Some functionalities may require set up before these can be exploited.
  • You may require department or project structures
  • You may need to measure your performance by other parameters such as location
  • You may want prior period or budgetary comparatives loaded
  • You may wish to modify default invoice formats or apply branding

If your coding structure is inappropriate or incomplete, you cannot capture relevant information at source, making it much more difficult to analyse & report on. Where requirements are not reflected correctly at the onset it can be both difficult and costly to go back later to reconfigure these.

We can work with you to understand your business, translate your requirements into appropriately defined structures and reflect these within your system configuration.

Integration of Systems & Software

We are experienced in integrating accounting systems & applications allowing these to work seamlessly with each other by appropriate configuration of interface settings & data mappings.

Reporting Design, Optimisation & Implementation

Any accounting system will typically require configuration of its reports, just as much as its data settings.

In some cases, the accounting system may not hold all the relevant information required for decision making – particularly where this is non-financial in nature – and the use of alternative reports or dashboards may be appropriate

We can design, optimise and implement appropriate reports & dashboards for your business requirements as part of systems configuration or a standalone reporting services solution.

System Security & Controls

We can:

  • Provide advice with system security & access controls – in respect of your accounting system - and more generally.
  • Implement controls & authorisation procedures within your accounting systems to reduce the risk of fraud

We are strong advocates of cloud-based system solutions – whether for accounting processes or data storage – as these are generally supported by back-ups in multiple servers, often protected by military grade levels of IT security. Compliance with data protection legislation require suppliers to make you aware if your data – or personal data associated with your customers – has been illegally accessed.

And you have similar obligations.

If you hold personal data on manual records and these are accessed, copied or stolen – or if this is on your own hacked or stolen computers or back-up drives – it is a data protection breach and you have statutory duties to report this to a supervisory authority within specific timescales as well as the individuals affected.

If you can no longer access these – how do you do this – and avoid the risk of financial penalties?

Records Digitalisation

We can assist with the digitalisation of your financial records and their transfer to your cloud-based accounting system or other repository.

We can also advise you regarding both the statutory & appropriate retention periods for financial records & other business documentation – as well as when records should be destroyed.

CIMA