Client’s Challenging Situation:
Most small to mid-size accounting firms use 3rd party repositories to hold their clients accounting data. Other firms that perform services on accounting data also use these repositories. When accounting firms need data to prepare financial reports they extract data from these repositories, downloading it and creating financial reports. While the “accounting software” companies provide a range of services that serve general accounting services, there are limitations on how the data can be used to create reports for accounting firms’ clients.
Scope of the Problem:
Customer-aligned accounting firms want to create special, customized reports to satisfy the needs of their clients. Their clients place value on receiving reports containing customized metrics and customized formats. To complete these specialized services and reports accountants have been extracting data from the accounting repositories, placing it into spreadsheets, and using the data in the spreadsheets to generate the specialized reports. This is labour intensive and prone to create data errors.
We provided a consulting service to determine the feasibility of automating the extraction of data from accounting repositories. Our feasibility study confirmed the data could be extracted from 3rd party APIs [application programming interfaces] and outlined the software development required to create that data extraction.
The Value Delivered:
Our solution solved a long-standing problem by explaining how to create automated tools to satisfy the needs of accounting firms’ progressive clients. Automation of this data extraction reduces the need for time consuming manual data entry and improves the accuracy of data presented in specialized reports.