BlackLine Blog

August 04, 2020

4 Ways to Begin Mitigating Risk in Our Current Environment

Modern Accounting
2 Minute Read

Molly Boyle


Elizabeth Milne

Share Article

Part 4 of our Accounting in Challenging Times blog series. You can view the full series here.

It’s time to dive into the steps you can begin taking to alleviate these pains and set your F&A organization up for success in this new environment. None of us know how long we’ll be working remotely, but we have an opportunity to learn how to do this well and be prepared for whatever the future holds.

Reduce Spreadsheet Sprawl

For starters, it’s time to reduce spreadsheet sprawl once and for all by moving your data to a single secure online location. Centralizing data allows your team members to review, approve, and report on the work that’s being done from anywhere, without disruption.

You can set up secure integrations between your close management solutions, ERP, and other data sources, rather than relying on ad hoc extracts ran by accounting staff.

Reduce Email Communication

Another way to mitigate the current remote sect risk is to reduce email communication and files sent over email during period end. The most effective way to do this is to use a solution that unifies all of that for you, in one central location, and enables collaboration, communication, and the ability to store all supporting documentation.

Address the Personal & Professional Impact of WFH

All of our professional and personal lives have changed dramatically, and the challenges of working fully remote are likely still exacerbated.

Now, in addition to your full-time job, you’re also a history, geography, and art teacher, or your barking dog has become part of your Zoom meetings. There are so many new stressors that we were used to keeping separate from our work life, and this can have an interesting impact on morale.

Morale is essential to retaining and attracting top talent. So, ask yourself: are your employees feeling concerned about their jobs, or challenged by working from home while managing personal and family commitments? This is an important concern that accounting management needs to address with an elevated level of compassion.

Now, ask yourself this question: are my employees engaged in and motivated by the work I’m asking them to do? Can I retain them with the current processes?

In a few years, will you be able to successfully attract and recruit digital natives to a world full of spreadsheets, manual processes, and inefficient practices?

Prepare for the Future with the Right Technology

Purpose-built technology is key to shaping the way you work now and into the future, while also reducing the time spent giving updates on certain deliverables. It not only enables you and your teams to accurately report on the data used for key decision-making, but it also ensures you’ll attract the right talent in the future.

This is the best way to better equip your business to run in a virtual environment, make F&A more efficient while still operating with a distributed workforce, and reduce the stress on your teams and yourself.

Visit our Virtual Close hub page for the resources you need to close virtually with confidence and work together effectively during these uncertain times.

About the Authors


Molly Boyle


Elizabeth Milne