Why the need for an FP&A solution 

Robert Kendrick, VP of Finance at ABIM has been with the company for 19 years.

In this time, the company has gone through significant growth going from nearly 150 to 240 employees and 19 different departments. 

One of Kendrick’s main goals was to automate financial reporting. 

He wanted to find a solution to bring their financial reporting processes up to date.

Before choosing Datarails, ABIM’s financial reporting was entirely manual and heavily reliant on Excel. Kendrick described their old software as “two-dimensional”. They could not pivot on their data and drill down into the numbers. 

Datarails fit the bill perfectly as a solution that automated financial reporting and provided new levels of analysis and reporting for the organization to function better.

The solution: A solution that allows you to pivot on your data for better analysis

Kendrick says Datarails can slice your data in any way you want offering “better financial reporting ease of information, efficiencies, and the ability to build and pivot on the information that we have, in ways we weren’t able to do before” 

“Datarails offers better financial reporting, ease of information, efficiencies, and the ability to build and pivot on the information that we have, in ways we weren’t able to do before.”

Robert Kendrick
VP of Finance, ABIM

ABIM can now report and drill down on multiple different layers of data to achieve more in-depth analysis and insights for department managers and upper management.

“I’ve always enjoyed report building. That’s my thing. I love that.” says Kendrick. 

For the first time, Datarails’ Report Builder feature allowed their manual report-building process to be efficient and automatic.  

The impact: Days back every month and a transformed financial reporting process

The ABIM Finance team produces around 12 different reports at month-end – for accrual and cash reporting.

Month-end reporting used to take the team roughly 2 to 3 business days. With the introduction of Datarails, the month-end reports are now reviewed and prepared in less than a day.

“Datarails has saved us a ton of time. We were doing all of this manually before. All we do now is drop our data file into Datarails, and every month it’ll build our reports for us.”

Robert Kendrick
VP of Finance, ABIM

Kendrick added, “What I love about it as well is that you can drill down on a number and format what the output is going to look like.”

He adds that budget managers ‘for example’ can drill down and see all the checks related to specific printing vendors, verify if all the vendors belong in the ‘printing’ category, and answer expense-related questions like “How much did the department spend on printing”. They can also oversee and track payments for various vendors.

“It’s the magic of datarails. It’s beautiful”

Robert Kendrick
VP of Finance, ABIM

A solution not limited to just Finance 

He explains that years ago FP&A tools were limited to the finance team. Now, you can set it up so you don’t have to be a finance professional to learn how to run these reports and be able to read them. “That’s what I like about it”, adds Kendrick. 

Kendrick shares, that he likes the ability to build graphs and visualization on the financial data. They also use the dashboards to do comparative analysis and drill down the data.

“It’s not limited to one internal audience. You don’t have to be an accountant to understand what’s going on”

Robert Kendrick
VP of Finance, ABIM

Time back to focus on other business areas

Kendrick shared that getting the reports faster means he can now spend his time in other areas of the organization and be available to do other projects. He says, “When we were closing, before, the first 4 or 6 days of the month-end close, the Finance team was completely off limits.  That’s because we were bogged down with manual processes to pull our reports together.”

“Now, with the introduction Datarails, I’ve already started to realize some recaptured time.  The time saved allows me to get a head start on other organizational project work – because I have time now.”

With efficiency improved, he’s now able to be more available to his team, and to managers in the organization.  

For instance, forecasting revenue projections is one of Kendrick’s big tasks. He points out that he’s already 85% done with the projections, a month prior to when he used to be able to get to it. 

Having trust in the data Datarails is putting out

Having manual errors and having to triple-check your work in Excel was common practice. That has now changed since implementing Datarails.

With Datarails, Kendrick says, “I trust the information that DataRails is posting and I feel comfortable with the output. I trust the fact that Datarails is pulling in all the correct information. Our data has been vetted (by our Finance team) and compared to prior internal reports resulting in 100% accuracy.”