Verhelst Group

The BrightAnalytics reporting system enables us to better monitor the performance of our sites, and to capture any additional work and to invoice it.

-Dries Devroe, CFO Verhelst Group

Just one click to view the turnover, costs and profit margin per site

Besides financial reports, construction companies also require project reports to enable them to keep a close eye on construction sites. This also applies to the Verhelst Group based in Ostend, the trend-setting overall partner for construction projects. They have decided to switch to BrightAnalytics for all their reporting. The outcome? Insights to the highest degree.

Dries Devroe, CFO of the Verhelst Group, was immediately blown away when he was shown a BrightAnalytics demo by a colleague. He explains: “At that time, our reporting processes were very laborious. We are a trend-setting, forward-looking family-run construction company offering 6 types of expertise and encompassing 15 companies in total. This demands financial and consolidated reporting, with the additional need for project reporting. This type of reporting covers the construction sites of Verhelst Contractors, and it is used as a basis for the monthly meetings with our site managers. Until recently, all this was done with the use of Excel and QlikView, with an additional reporting layer that was linked to our KPD accountancy package. However, our reporting procedures had never been properly developed, and we had never managed to fix it despite numerous attempts. When I first saw the powerful visualisation and the user-friendliness of BrightAnalytics, I decided to get back to the drawing board, and to start the whole process again from scratch.“

 

Based on Belgian Accountancy

Dries contacted a number of the references of BrightAnalytics to ask them about their experience with the tool, and that is when he made his decision. “You know, seeing a demo is all very well. You are shown the best features and functionalities, and everything is great and wonderful. Asking questions from references provides a much truer picture. Everyone I spoke to was full of praise about the tool.” He adds: “Within a month we had BrightAnalytics up and running. We started out with the standard product: financial reporting. This was already a good product. Everything worked beautifully, especially when clicking further and zooming in on all the ledgers, the analytical accounts, the invoices, etc. The system manages it all perfectly. It is also a great advantage that BrightAnalytics is a Belgian company that uses Belgian accountancy as the basis. That is noticeable throughout: the names, the classifications, etc.”

Dries Devroe CFO van Group Verhelst

Problems on site cannot be ignored. A company such as ours must be able to respond quickly. BrightAnalytics enables us to do that.

- Dries Devroe, CFO Verhelst Group

Quickly connected to KPD

Initially we continued to use Excel for our project reports, but Dries is now also using BrightAnalytics for that purpose. “It involves an extra P&L, that uses detailed cost types. Every site has a profit & loss account and site reporting which enables us to closely monitor everything in detail, from start to finish. That is vital for a company such as ours, because construction sites are open environments with various parameters that can affect our efficiency. We use the BrightAnalytics reporting system at our monthly meetings with our site and project managers. It enables us to better monitor the performance and to capture any extra work, which we can then also invoice. For every site and for every project and site manager, we now have a full overview of the turnover, the costs and the margin.”

Was it difficult to link BrightAnalytics to KPD to achieve all that? “We managed to do that very quickly. A major advantage of BrightAnalytics is that it is a fully developed organisation with a sales department, a back office, etc. When you ask them a question, you will get an answer that same day. They are extremely flexible. And that is what a company such as ours needs right now. We have to be able to respond quickly. Problems on site cannot be ignored.” 

 

Insights into the origins of the consolidated results

To consolidate its figures, the Verhelst Group ordered a number of additional consolidation reports to be compiled in addition to the standard consolidation tool to cater for the way their 15 companies are consolidated. “Those reports were tailor-made for us, and they give us a consolidated insight into the performance. We defined approx. 4 business activities – contracts, recycling, machinery, and anything that constitutes an overhead – which not only enables us to consolidate the entire group but also to produce sub-consolidation reports. This gives us an overview, for example, of the origins of the results. It is so easy that we are now in a position that we can produce quarterly consolidation figures.” 

Would Dries recommend the tool to others? “Absolutely. Because it is an easy to use and intuitive platform, and affordable as well. It also contains a number of fun features. For example, you can insert comments, share views with your colleagues, etc. You also feel the West Flanders mentality of the company behind the scenes. It has ‘poer’, as we would say. They just do it. In addition, they also continue to invest in technology and in their people. As a customer you know that you will always have the latest developments available.”

 

The benefits in a nutshell:

  • Quickly up and running
  • Super-fast data checking
  • Very easy and flexible
  • Low risk of errors
  • Developed to operate intuitively, a novice will easily find their way
  • Large organisation ensuring continuity

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

The family-run construction company Verhelst Group started out as a brick factory in 1925 in Oudenburg (Ostend), and 4 generations later it has grown into a trend-setting and forward-looking overall partner for professional construction projects, operating throughout the whole of Belgium. With no less than 6 divisions, they undertake all types of construction work, from contract work to sand quarrying. With their extensive expertise and constant drive for innovation they have reached the top of the Belgian construction world. And now BrightAnalytics is also taking their reporting to the highest possible level.

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