Griffin not only needed to significantly reduce the time it took to complete reconciliations. The company also had to ensure accounting data was more visible and accessible to both accountants and auditors. This meant moving away from a reliance on spreadsheets and implementing a system that would automate many of the rote and repetitive close activities.
While Griffin reviewed numerous account reconciliation software vendors, the company partnered with BlackLine for several key reasons. First, BlackLine integrated seamlessly with their existing ERP, JD Edwards. This was crucial to maintaining the integrity of data during transfers between systems. “BlackLine works so well with our ERP. We have it set up so it automatically creates a file we just import into BlackLine,” said Jurgensen.
BlackLine’s ease of use was also significant in the decision. While Griffin’s existing close process was terribly inefficient, they thought that implementing any new technology meant accountants would have to spend additional time learning a new system. But the company discovered via demos and customer recommendations that BlackLine was not only user friendly, but that free training via BlackLine U meant the company wouldn’t have to pay extra for initial instruction.