Why Version Control is Crucial to Corporate Budgets and How to Maintain Version Integrity

Budgeting
Dec 2021
Why Version Control is Crucial to Corporate Budgets and How to Maintain Version Integrity

Did you know that the number of budget versions your company churns through in a year is a strong indicator of overall company performance? Recent data has shown that the highest performing companies only churn through four budget iterations per year. That’s a tight turnaround– and it doesn’t happen by accident.  

This article reviews top ways to keep your company synced across multiple departments so when it comes time to consolidate the budget, you have minimal versions operating.


Why Is Version Control So Crucial?

The larger the corporation, the more difficult it becomes to manage budgets and workflow. While the company financials all feed to the top, each department operates on its own budget. Human resources, IT, sales, and marketing all pull on funds differently. They each track expenses, employee information, and customer data, yet the way these sources feed into the larger picture will change the company's profitability.

Why do version controls matter? Because they reveal if the company departments are working together through the same vision or working separately. Talented leadership and excellent employees will still lose company money if finances aren't handled consistently across the board.

Thus, the ease of consolidating your company budget is an excellent indicator of your company’s culture and the likelihood of success.


Corporations Need Quality Systems To Succeed

The larger the corporation, the more crucial efficient systems are to succeed. Big companies need high levels of communication, follow-through, and interdepartmental cooperation– otherwise, they’ll spend as much time correcting work as they did doing the work in the first place.

Bullet-proof systems around budget version control produce a single source of truth– the entire company should be running with the same information. Proper guidelines and software are the most efficient way to maintain version control. This article describes the basic systems and solutions any company can adopt to achieve financial flow.


Beware of Silos

Data governance is critical to any business in an age of data breaches and ransomware attacks. Silos are a natural solution, creating job-specific barriers to expose sensitive data to the fewest number of people possible. However, many companies have found themselves in a “catch 22” situation, with unintended consequences from their data silos.

There are a few ways to keep necessary silos in place while keeping communication channels open and budget versions to a minimum. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Have finance department management included in each departments' data. This will allow for the finance team to keep congruencies across the company.
  • Have quarterly reviews with departments heads to ensure budgeting is on track.
  • Create transparent, written systems to explain how each department organizes information. Keeping information uniform across departments will make it easier to consolidate into a single budget.

Automate, Automate, Automate

Wherever possible, streamline basic processes through automation. From data collection to data processing, automation saves time, reduces errors, and ensures uniform task performance.

Quality financial software systems are typically preferred over spreadsheets like Excel-- especially for large corporations. Excel can be a powerful tool in specific scenarios, but the learning curve can make it inaccessible to some employees. These spreadsheet alternatives are also susceptible to corruption if someone accidentally alters a coded cell or inputs incorrect data.

Real-time Updates, Real-time Decision Making Power

Quality software also makes it possible to have company-wide, real-time updates. However, it’s challenging to have a single source of truth if different teams and departments need to join their reports manually.

Budgets will go through fewer versions and updates when all information is updated seamlessly. Not only does that boost efficiency, but it leaves you and your leadership team more time to focus on guiding the company than waiting for reports.

Predictable Deadlines

Our final tip centers around deadlines. While the correct software, automation, and live updates will make everything easier and clear, you’ll still need to make sure that people report at the right time.

Work with your department heads and leadership teams to finalize all department reports at least quarterly. The more intuitive the reporting period, the easier it will be for your departments to build good reporting habits.

Conclusion

Accurate finance and budget tracking is the lifeblood of company success– but not without its challenges. Companies need powerful, robust, and innovative software to do the heavy lifting and consistent automation of repetitive tasks.

Check out Cofi solutions for a demo today!