Part 2 in our CNH Industrial's Finance Automation Journey blog series. Read Part 1 here.
Modern technology has allowed CNH Industrial to move from filing cabinets full of account reconciliations in back rooms to be able to approve them on an iPad at home.
BlackLine is helping with this process, allowing their teams to leverage additional controls and programs to validate accuracy. This also gives them more time to spend on analyzing and providing information to business partners.
Kelly Bergstrom, Chief Accounting Officer, NAFTA at CNH Industrial continues the conversation with BlackLine.
BlackLine Magazine: What was the next step in your continuous improvement journey?
Kelly: We implemented our Journal Entry solution, again with our land and expand approach. The benefits are similar to the benefits of Account Reconciliation.
There's less paper, and preparers and approvers can work from anywhere. We have automatic imports every night, so it's almost real time. Every next day we can see all the journals that were posted the day before.
You can link them to the account reconciliations, which I think is a really cool function. Instead of putting the support in there twice, you can put it in once and the two models link to each other. We're getting a lot of synergies out of that.
BlackLine Magazine: How has this helped your auditors?
Kelly: We give our auditors direct access to both our Account Reconciliation and Journal Entry platforms. I know that sounds scary, but we haven't had any problems, and we're giving our accountants time back.
They're not pulling account reconciliations or journal entries for auditors anymore. We're giving them direct access to go in themselves and get them. That's been a huge efficiency improvement for us.
BlackLine Magazine: Which solution did you implement after Journals?
Kelly: Task Management, which is one of my favorite solutions because of the flexibility and many ways we use it. We have it set up for some of our monthly, quarterly, and annual tasks that are required from a controls standpoint. It’s really helpful as a reminder of repetitive things, like what we provided last quarter or last year.
Our auditors absolutely love it because they are so focused on time and date stamps and whether people actually reviewed before approving. Blackline provides all of this information.
We put the task in BlackLine and attach the support within BlackLine as well. The preparer can certify the task and then I can come in and review and approve it as my certification—instead of just saying I did it or maybe signing some more paper. We don't really like paper!
BlackLine Magazine: What are the other benefits of Task Management for your auditors?
Kelly: It’s given us a very convenient way to show evidence of our process, and we’ve trained our auditors to provide the PBC list in BlackLine format.
We upload the PBC list into BlackLine and use this as a way to document the support. Again, it's got that nice time and date stamp so we’re no longer having arguments about which day this was turned around.
We have the auditors set up as a team because we know that they swap in and out of the engagement. Sometimes we don't necessarily have to worry about getting things to the right person. They can pull the information when they're ready and when it comes time to make selections, they will decertify the task, and put in their comments.
Read CNH Industrial’s success story to learn more about how to begin your organization’s continuous improvement journey.