In the face of rising stakeholder expectations and of regulations such as Sarbanes-Oxley, companies have to produce reports more rapidly and with higher data quality. Therefore the complexity of financial reporting has steadily increased over the last years.
Accounting Advisory Services (AAS) supports KPMG firms’ clients in enhancing the data quality, shortening the period for preparing financial statements and simplifying the process flows and valuation methods. For this reason, AAS has developed a five-stage approach for Quality Close projects:
1. focus on efficient project initiation
2. analysis of current processes, structures and systems, benchmarking them against industry best practice to identify areas for improvement
3. design optimized processes, structures, guidelines and closing calendars to manage the overall closing process in a time-efficient manner
4. advising on the implementation of optimized processes, structures, guidelines, closing calendars and tracking tools
5. monitoring of the optimized closing process.
The KPMG methodology is based on our knowledge and the varied experiences of our member firms interdisciplinary Quality Close teams, which include auditors as specialists for accounting, process and IT specialists. Our multidisciplinary teams have experience across all industries. A Quality Close project can be started at any time and is very flexible, this allows the project to be modularly applied based on the client’s specific needs (taking into account the financial calendar or ongoing process within the client’s organization). The complexity and duration of the project can vary from a short assessment to a redesign of processes.
By increasing the speed and data quality of the closing process our firms’ clients should benefit from:
- Improved efficiency:
- reduction of low value-added work
- increased use of automation
- enhanced ability to identify and correct errors.
- Enhanced controls:
- enhanced enterprise-wide closing process coordination
- greater reliance on preventive rather than detective controls
- documentation of policies and control procedures.
- Reduced complexity:
- global process standardization
- integrated and shared closing calendar
- appropriate setting of consistent materiality thresholds
- documentation and training on the closing process.
- Earlier information:
- improved speed of information delivery
- enhanced system functionality.