When you are not only operating internationally but also have four companies in four countries, accounting and reporting does not get any easier. Vincent Logistics also faced this challenge. When the company’s reporting needs exceeded their Excel cap, they made the switch to BrightAnalytics. Today, with one click of the mouse, they conjure up the latest consolidated figures. And that from four accounting packages and on three levels.
“Vincent Logistics is a logistics and transport company with entities in Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Slovakia,” Caroline Vergotte begins. Together with her husband, she runs Vincent Logistics. “We want to be able to track the performance of our companies. But this is anything but simple: not only are we working with data from four different accounting packages, each country also has its own accounting legislation. In addition, we want to be able to filter intercompany transactions out of the data easily.”
Until recently, Vincent Logistics worked with Excel for this purpose. “Our reporting, however, became increasingly confusing and complicated, with parameters coming from all directions and extremely sensitive, complex formulas. This was becoming untenable. Intercompany transactions also had to be extracted from the figures manually, which did not always work. So there was no complete and correct consolidated result. That meant we always had to interpret the figures carefully, and could never rely on them 100%.
Vincent Logistics was looking for a tool that could help. It was the company’s bank that advised them at a certain point to sit down with BrightAnalytics. “At that point I had already looked at a number of possible tools, but hadn’t yet found the right solution for our business,” says Caroline. “Either they were too big and therefore too expensive for us as an SME, or they couldn’t answer our request for direct consolidation. After sitting down with BrightAnalytics and seeing the demo of the tool, we found what we were looking for.”
Accountant Christine Bronckart joins her: “What immediately struck us was that it was a very visual and graphically strong solution. We were also able to configure BrightAnalytics according to our needs. We use three levels of analysis in our accounts: we want to be able to analyse data on the basis of our fleet, transport categories and fuels. Our reporting needed to be in line with what we had been doing in Excel up until then, but easier, faster and error-free. BrightAnalytics eventually incorporated our P&L from Excel into the tool. Including a customised automatic cost allocation for costs that cannot be allocated to a heading.”
For IT project manager Christoph Mennicken, who was responsible for the preparatory analysis and mapping, the ease of use of BrightAnalytics also stands out. “The tool is very intuitive. Moreover, we can click through to the smallest detail. Even down to the scanned invoice! Comparing budget figures with actual performance is quick and easy. And we can exclude intercompany invoices with one click. The comments function ensures that the accountants can explain striking figures in the monthly reporting for the management. Handy!”
He also considers the fact that – after a half-day training course at BrightAnalytics – he himself can define and create additional ratios that the company wants to monitor to be an important asset. “This ensures that we can properly monitor the most pertinent issues for our company. Covid-19, for instance, allows us to pay more attention to certain parameters than usual. It’s very easy to see them on the screen, without having to rely on an external programmer. And BrightAnalytics helps us with questions or problems. They are quick to respond, very dynamic, and have always found a solution so far. It’s a successful partnership!
“Prepare yourself well if you want to introduce a reporting tool: what do you want to get out of the tool? How do you get the information from various accounting packages into the tool? And how do you build up your reporting consistently and logically? This takes time. Don’t work quickly, but thoroughly. BrightAnalytics will then be able to adapt quickly and your solution will be up and running in no time.