5 Key Takeaways from the Close the Books Survey

Closing the books is a routine job that can be frustratingly time-consuming to carry out. Many finance teams struggle to manage the close process efficiently, sometimes spending nights and weekends ensuring numbers are correct.

That’s why Sage Intacct conducts the annual “Close the Books” survey – to share what’s working, what’s not working, and the best practices of finance teams that are reducing the time spent on close.

The 2021 survey is underway. In the meantime, here are five findings and key takeaways from the 2020 survey:

  1. Over a quarter of those who responded listed consolidations as a main barrier to closing the books on time. The best-in-class organizations spent less than an hour on these consolidations.

Key Takeaway—Choose a financial management system that can consolidate entries with the click of a button.

  1. The number of close days increases as revenue increases until companies hit $100 million when they typically implement more robust financial management software.

Key Takeaway—Choose a solution that scales with your business and supports growth.

  1. Being highly available, having fewer IT needs, and scaling with the business were the top three benefits of using cloud software.

Key Takeaway— Choose a solution that is fully accessible and supported from anywhere in the world.

  1. Respondents saw automation as the main aspect of their closing process that can be improved.

Key Takeaway— Choose a solution that eliminates tedious manual processes and spreadsheet headaches.

  1. Looking ahead, companies are most interested in Artificial Intelligence (AI) features such as continuous closing, predictive analytics, and outlier detection.

Key Takeaway—Choose a vendor that is already implementing AI and has a strong AI roadmap for improving your close process.

Dive into the close process and learn best practices, success stories, and how AI will change the future of close. Get the full report here.