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Isolated systems create a time-consuming process and left reports error prone

A leading Boston-based private equity firm has a $15 billion portfolio containing a wide variety of funds, ventures, real estate, and operating companies across many disparate industries. They had issues with their quarterly consolidation process as well as an ineffective budgeting and planning process.

Since working with Archetype, the firm now has a solution that requires no re-keying of data or manual adjustments. The technology has unprecedented visibility and both portfolio managers and investors have extensive capabilities for analysis, modelling, and drill-through to investment level financial and non-financial metrics and KPIs.

Problem

Disconnected systems and extensive manual adjustments led to widespread issues for the firm, and chief among them: a largely ineffective budgeting and planning process. These delays caused both internal and external headaches as the despite the huge amount of time and effort, the reports lacked the level of detail required by portfolio managers and investors.

Here are some of the items that exacerbated the issue:

  • Off-line spreadsheet use
  • Numerous isolated systems used during consolidation meant the process was time-consuming and error-prone
  • Because of the isolation from each department, the users lacked the transparency and operational detail required to effectively manage each business and investment.

Solution

Archetype worked with business users across all function levels. The team identified three areas to address.

  1. There was no documentation on current state processes and therefore no defining future state and system requirements. The firm had a unique set of requirements and needed a solution that could centrally manage portfolio consolidation, reporting and analytics.
  2. The team had to eliminate the massive manual effort that plagued users involved with actual, budget, forecast and reporting processes.
  3. Managing directors and other users needed to access key financials through a centrally managed platform.

Given the unique set of requirements, Archetype led the group through a software selection process to identify the best fit solution for the firm and together decided to leverage the Hyperion suite of tools and SharePoint. In subsequent phases, Archetype integrated financial data with external market data from Bloomberg and Moody’s to support Spotfire visualizations and reporting.

Result

After working with Archetype, the private equity firm now has a solution that provides accurate and timely information to the right people at the right time.

The solution has

  • increased transparency into key metrics and analytics that drive the business.
  • significantly reduced the cost of consolidation and reconciliation and improved data quality by eliminating manual effort.
  • allowed portfolio managers, investors and the finance team to be confident in their reporting and now have capabilities to run extensive analysis across what had been information silos.
  • transformed the firm’s reporting capabilities as this new solution is capable of advanced performance analytics, scenario and ad-hoc analysis across several key business units.
  • saved time and resources as the process no longer require users spending time cleaning data but instead discovering information.