The more challenging the times, the greater the need for reliable, up-to-date figures. This is once again demonstrated by our conversation with Group Ghistelinck, which is active in the automotive sector. For the West-Flemish company, it is more than ever a must to be able to make cash flow forecasts. So they opt for an automated report. In BrightAnalytics!
“We ended up with BrightAnalytics via a Webinar when our reporting tool was in need of updating,” begins Christian Tack, CFO. “Until recently, we read our figures from Incadea (a custom Navision package for the automotive sector), but the manipulations to finish the reporting analytically in our previous reporting tool were cumbersome: they had to be done manually afterwards. That cost us a lot of time. Moreover, it was not that easy to make additional reports yourself.”
After comparing various tools, the company chose BrightAnalytics. “We immediately had a very good feeling about the demo and the explanation we received,” explains Finance Manager Stefanie Destoop. “The platform was especially user-friendly and simple. We were also able to set up and manage reports quickly ourselves. Moreover, we noticed that BrightAnalytics already included standard reporting with a P&L, a balance sheet and a cash flow statement: after set-up and mapping, these were available in plug-and-play. With the other tools we looked at, this still had to be partially created. Finally, we noticed that other platforms provided a dashboard with key figures, while BrightAnalytics also allows us to analyse the reports in a different view. We consider that to be a major advantage.”
After half a day of training, Ghistelinck Car Companies could get started. “Our contact explained to us how we could do our mapping from the general ledger accounts to the reporting sections. We were quickly up and running with it,” continues Assistant Finance Manager Frederik Depoortere. “If there are new accounts or cost centers, the mapping is a lot easier than before. Because the tool is also connected to Incadea, we always have one version of the truth. We read in extra-account entries once a month. In BrightAnalytics, we can then immediately see what has been added. That saves us a lot of time. What’s more, we always have up-to-date figures.
The reporting is consolidated over the eight Ghistelinck Autobedrijven plants, but through the filters analyses can also be made per plant and per department. “Compare it to a multidimensional cube,” says Christian, “which allows us to rotate, filter and drill down to general ledger accounts and even transactions. If you want to see the details of costs, you can do that very easily.”
He also considers the fact that they can create other reports in BrightAnalytics to be an asset. “There is a standard cash flow statement in the tool, but we want to start doing cash forecasting in particular. We need that, because we’re in a very cash-driven business. Especially now, in these challenging times: it is essential to have these figures available quickly so that we can react rapidly.
In the future, the company also wants to develop operational reporting in BrightAnalytics. “The P&L and balance sheet are running, our budgets are in place, and our cash flow forecasting is currently being prepared and set up. In a next phase we want to use BrightAnalytics for our operational reporting, which is currently done in Excel”, Christian adds. “For example, this concerns the daily turnover reports per type of vehicle, or the KPIs of our after-sales activities. It would be handy if that could also be linked to BrightAnalytics. After all, the data comes from the same source. Moreover, we would then have a single version on the platform, instead of an Excel that has to be stored in a folder. In this way, we want to further implement the tool in the company to monitor our KPIs.”