“While the speed and input of all the detail is great,
it’s the audit that lets me sleep at night.”
When a 12-person family office in the Midwest needed a change in efficiency, they turned to KnowLedger to automate the slow, tedious, repetitive data entry into the GL which immediately paid dividends in improved operations, oversight, auditing – and morale!
A family office with 12 employees in the Midwest that uses an array of software tools to provide reconciled and controlled reporting through the sharing of common data. The firm’s investment strategy involves a carefully curated blend of fixed income and equity managers as well as alternative positions. Cash, brokerage, and alternatives transactions are all processed through Advent APX. Sage Intacct is the accounting application used by a second generation of the family.
The firm’s accounting team previously entered all of the cash and investment data into their GL manually. They would key in monthly or quarterly statements on a delayed basis since those statements did not become available until significantly after the period close. The reconciliation process consisted of manually reviewing and comparing the entered GL data to the statements from which the data was drawn. This was not an ideal reconciliation process, since the same staff who entered the data were also checking it against the same source documents on which they initially relied. The accounting staff also disliked this very slow and tedious work.
The Ideal Solution
To start, one of the reasons this firm has been successful is because it continually assesses ways in which it can better improve its processes. Increased efficiency and data integrity are always top of mind. For this reason, KnowLedger’s service squarely met its objectives of addressing their efficiency and operational needs.
Working closely with the KnowLedger team, the process was thoroughly assessed and automated. Once working, KnowLedger began making an immediate impact. KnowLedger is now able to process and post both cash and investment transactions weekly from Advent APX. As a result, the GL updating is much timelier and the staff can access and analyze current GL data during the month. KnowLedger’s automation of GL data integration allows the accounting staff to review and audit data they did not input, increasing the reliability and the quality of the audit process. The cash and investment transactions are now posted, audited, and reconciled much more quickly than the previous manual entries, and subject to more effective review.
The team has been able to save time, increase the efficacy of their controls, and expeditiously post more detailed data into the GL. The Controller can readily identify in Sage Intacct the journal entries that were entered by staff rather than KnowLedger and can question changes as needed without delay.
With KnowLedger in place, the accounting staff can focus on higher-value review and audit tasks, rather than the slow and tedious data entry that KnowLedger has automated.
A look at numbers from just a single quarter illustrates KnowLedger’s impact on workflow. With 2,990 transactions requiring GL entry, and calculating the time required for that task using the average time required to locate and properly enter each individual transaction, manual entry would have required more than 50 hours of staff time each quarter. Using KnowLedger’s automation, this process was reduced from 50+ hours to just 2 hours per quarter – a 96% improvement in efficiency!
KnowLedger’s service also incorporates both error and fraud protection because humans (and their ever-present potential for human error) are not involved in the posting and movement of data or transactions. At this point, volume of data manually entered by staff is so small that it can be reviewed in mere minutes in Sage Intacct.
“Using KnowLedger instead of manually inputting journal entries has given us a level of internal control not possible before. While the speed and input of all the detail is great, it’s the audit that lets me sleep at night.”, said a Controller at the SFO.
For more information about KnowLedger, please visit KnowLedger.com.