Finance and Accounting

Strategies for maximising efficiency in the record-to-report process

Over the years, the finance and accounting industry has seen a significant change, going from physical ledger books to sophisticated digital systems that leverage advanced analytics capabilities for accurate reporting. The advancement of Record-to-Report (R2R) solutions is one such example that has changed financial reporting for the better, reducing the time and effort needed to analyse financial data and compile reports.

However, a recent survey of the C-suite and senior finance and accounting professionals has revealed that nearly 40% of CFOs are worried about the accuracy of their financial reporting. They are expecting enhanced R2R efficiency to support strategic decisions in today’s complex and dynamic financial landscape. As leaders expect financial excellence, R2R process innovation and improvement is no longer an option but a necessity to stay compliant and competitive.

Importance of the R2R process

At its core, the R2R process takes financial data from different sources and transforms it into actionable reports and compliance documents. Contemporary R2R solutions can help you move away from complex, time-consuming, and error-prone paper records and spreadsheets to timely, accurate, and audit-ready reports. This real-time financial visibility offers many benefits to businesses, including:

  • Real-time insights into financial and operational data and automated reporting to support faster, data-driven decision-making
  • Faster close processes through workflow automation and simplified reconciliation
  • Enhanced compliance with accounting standards and regulations through improved internal controls, audit trails, and governance

Innovative strategies to maximise R2R efficiency

An efficient R2R process is the cornerstone of streamlined financial reporting. It can be a great source of competitive advantage in today's dynamic financial landscape, where real-time visibility and agility are critical. Here are some strategies for R2R process innovation that can help you optimise the reporting process for maximum efficiency:

Implement process automation tools

Leveraging process automation can help you automate routine tasks – like data entry, ledger maintenance, and account reconciliation – that are prone to human error. This not only minimises the risk of human error but also ensures that every piece of data is accounted for when compiling different financial reports. Standardising procedures and documentation workflows can be a great first step towards achieving this.

Improve internal communication

Seamless data sharing and communication between different departments and modules becomes critical for larger organisations working across different locations and multiple subsidiaries. R2R solutions that offer smart integration solutions can eliminate the need for manual data transfer, minimising the risk of discrepancies and enhancing transparency.

Prioritise data quality 

Quality data is at the heart of R2R efficiency. Regular checks for data validation and quality are essential to ensure access to high-quality data for analysis. Steps like data organisation and control protocols, regular review and collaboration, and optimised reconciliation can help ensure the accuracy of financial reporting and minimise any need for rework.

Enhance close-period reporting precision

Establishing clear guidelines and deadlines for every stage of the R2R close-period reporting can enhance the speed and precision of end-period closing. This, coupled with process automation tools, can offer real-time visibility and reporting capabilities to help you stay agile and compliant with the changing regulatory guidelines and standards.

Enhance control and compliance

Restricting access to financial data can help establish auditable trails for every data point and report, ensuring not only reporting accuracy but also compliance. This can also facilitate fraud prevention and help with strategic planning as you progress towards continuous accounting.

Embrace advanced technological capabilities

Technologies like cloud platforms for real-time data access, AI and ML-powered analytics tools, RPA and blockchain solutions, regulatory technology, and sophisticated cybersecurity practices can take your R2R efficiency to the next level. These tools can help you progress towards real-time reporting capabilities and continuous accounting.

Partner with the right R2R specialist

Working with the right R2R specialist to implement the R2R solution is crucial when implementing any of the R2R process innovation strategies mentioned above. The right R2R partner can help you understand your reporting and compliance needs, organise and control financial data, focus on the right KPIs, and enhance R2R efficiency.

How can Infosys BPM help with R2R innovations?

With data coming in from many different sources, contemporary R2R solutions have to focus on ensuring data accuracy, integrity, and validity to ensure R2R efficiency. Infosys BPM R2R services can help you embrace innovation and transform your financial processes. Our end-to-end platform and AI-driven RPA solutions can help you leverage R2R process innovations to enhance your reporting efficiency by up to 45%.

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