Integrated approach to Reporting
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A couple of weeks ago I received the Statement of Qualifications (SoQ), which was developed by one of our practitioners (link Edwin). The Statement of Qualifications is intended to inform our clients about our vision with respect to Corporate (or Integrated) Performance Management, the methodology and tools we use to implement Corporate Performance Management and some detailed business cases of CPM-projects we did in the past.
Deloitte successfully implemented a great amount of CPM-projects from which we developed best practices on how to create an integrated reporting cycle. All our experiences (good experiences and of course some bad experiences) helped us to develop this practical framework and I am convinced the document gives the reader a lot of insight in the way a CPM-project should be implemented.
I would gladly share a chapter of the SoQ with you. To be more precise, it deals with our vision on how to implement an integrated reporting cycle and I would like to invite all of you to read the chapter and leave your comments on the blog. I am really curious about your point of view and experiences on this subject.
If you are interested in receiving the complete Statement of Qualifications, please send one of our practitioners an email and the SoQ will be send to you.
Information: Identifying requirements and sources
- The first step toward integrated reporting is to identify the critical information decision-makers need and to select definitive sources. To determine an organization’s information requirements, start by examining its performance scorecards at the corporate, business unit, and functional levels. Identify the competencies and critical success factors that drive the success of the business and enable the organization to meet its strategic goals.
- Then use those insights to link high-level and detailed performance measures to the organization’s success factors and goals. It is also important to address the organization’s detailed reporting requirements. Those typically include: financial data (e.g., consolidated P&L, tax, statutory), customer and operations data (e.g., channel, backlog, sales pipeline), and people-related data (e.g., headcount, turnover).\
- Once the information requirements have been defined, the challenge is building consensus on where the information will come from. Agreeing on an authoritative source for data is more difficult than it sounds. Most organizations have multiple applications that provide different answers to the same question, so decision-makers must decide which source will provide the one definitive answer everyone will regard as the truth. Achieving that consensus generally requires new procedures for reconciliation and synchronization.
Process: Capturing and managing data
- In some cases, an organization’s information requirements will include data that do not currently exist. Filling those gaps typically requires modifying an organization’s processes and systems to capture the data at its source.
- For consistency, key performance measures should be gathered at the same point as the detailed data — eliminating discrepancies and ensuring a single version of the truth.
- In many cases, process steps can be eliminated to speed up the process and improve reliability.
Technology: Organizing information for delivery
- Effective reporting translates raw data into meaningful insights that are directly relevant to the targeted decision-maker. Many companies strive for a single, do-all reporting solution. But in our experience, that rarely makes sense. Most reports fall into one of three categories, each requiring a different reporting approach:
- Executive information consists of high-level measures and key performance indicators that provide a quick overview of business performance.
- Analytic information provides focused, in-depth analysis across time periods, processes, locations, business units, and/or functional areas.
- Production and control information focuses on specific business activities within a defined time period (e.g., daily disbursement report, cash collection report). This information is generally contained within a single application or transaction system.
- While some organizations have successfully implemented a single solution for all three types of reporting, they often find themselves frustrated by the functional limitations of a single solution. Leading companies with IPM generally prefer to specialize, using ERP and transaction systems for production reporting, while applying data warehousing tools, online analytical processing, and advanced data analysis techniques to executive and analytic reporting.
Delivery: Disseminating information
- There are a dizzying number of options for presenting information, from wall posters, presentations, paper reports, and spreadsheets to e-mail and voicemail, PDF files, exception-based alerts, and interactive analysis tools. The right choice depends on both the situation and the particular needs of the decision-maker. Critical factors include cost, timeliness, importance, location, and technical constraints — as well as the sophistication and behavioral preferences of the targeted decision makers.
- While no solution is perfect for all situations, self-service web delivery is fast becoming a central part of every organization’s reporting strategy. Decision-makers already know how to use a web browser, significantly reducing the learning curve and providing a consistent interface for future enhancements and modifications. Web-based tools are also cost-effective to maintain — streamlining the reporting and decision-making processes.