Finance eGuide: 7 key elements of effective reporting

Published on: 23 April 2021
Written by: Tridant

On-time financial reporting is critical practice for every business. However, timeliness and a completed report is not enough.

Finance teams need to do more than oversee and report the financial health of their organisation. Increasingly, business stakeholders are looking to finance leaders to drive financial strategy and deliver valuable intelligence on revenue and growth opportunities, all while mitigating risks and costs.

Being able to deliver on these challenges well is grounded in having a firm grasp on the company’s critical data – whether related to the product, customer, or general business operations – even if the data is scattered across multiple systems.

Business stakeholders need real-time, accurate, consolidated, and easy-to-digest reports to help leaders across the organisation to quickly identify, assess and respond to trends, threats and opportunities.

How can the finance function build effective reports that leaders across the business can depend on to support more informed decisions?

The key elements for driving effective reporting are:

  1. Acknowledging that reporting is a process, not a tool
  2. Supporting financial metrics with non-financial metrics
  3. Understanding ‘what’s next’ is more important than ‘why’
  4. Explaining recommendations, risks, and assumptions
  5. Eliminating bad habits
  6. Coping with transparency, frequency, and detail
  7. Building visualisations with substance.

Recommended Reading: 
Finance eGuide: 3 Steps to a Faster Monthly Close
Finance eGuide: 6 Critical Steps to a Rolling Forecast
White Paper: Four trends for a faster monthly finance cycle

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