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Nov 23, 2011

Beyond automation with integrated financial and managerial accounting

One of the benefits of an ERP is the automation of accounting based on operational transactions. Any good ERP would automatically generate accounting based on the transactions recorded in the system, such as invoices, payments, asset movements, etc.  This way your organization can focus on execution, while an accounting view of the business is automatically generated  behind the scenes, allowing you to produce your end of period financial statements with no or minimal user intervention.
Financial statements, however, can only go so far in supporting your decision making processes and most businesses complement their financialaccounting view with additional measures or KPI (Key Performance Indicators) to support management decisions. Unlike financial statements, these measures are not standardized and vary radically from organization to organization. Examples of KPI include: revenues by product or by customer, expenses by department, customer profitability, etc.
Unlike other ERPs, Openbravo provides an integrated accounting system that combines financial accounting and managerial accounting, facilitating the process of complementing the financial statements with managerial measures while ensuring that these two views are always consistent and easy to reconcile.
With Openbravo, all documents having an accounting relevance generate an accounting representation in a single data store –  called the FACT_ACCT table, short for accounting facts – which is a multi-dimensional datamart that allows to report based on any dimension.
The supported dimensions are:
  • Time (accounting date, further grouped into periods and fiscal years)
  • Accounting schema (which is the “policy” used for accounting)
  • Organization
  • Account (further grouped by nature of the account: asset, liability, revenue or expense)
  • Product (further grouped into categories)
  • Business partner (further grouped into categories)
  • Project
  • Sales region
  • Marketing campaign
  • User defined 1
  • User defined 2




For financial accounting, you would primarily exploit the account dimension. For example, a Balance Sheet report allows you to report the position of the asset and liabilities accounts at a given point in time, while an Income Statement report allows you to report the activity in the revenue and expense accounts.

For managerial accounting, you would exploit the other dimensions as well. For example you can analyze the data in the FACT_ACCT table to get the following metrics:

  • Revenues by product categories and periods
  • Expenses by organizations
  • Top 10 revenue generating customers
  • Margin by product
  • Project profitability
  • etc.

 

Additionally, Openbravo 3 allows you to define and implement any KPI using Query List Widgets that allow you to visualize the performance of your company right out of the Openbravo Workspace.
Finally, it is very easy to expose the content of the FACC_ACCT table into business intelligence tools, such as Pentaho, JasperServer or Zoho Reports that business analysts can leverage to slice and dice the data and create charts and pivot tables to support decision making.

If you want to see the Openbravo’s integrated accounting in action, check out this short video.



 



To experience the power of Openbravo directly, you can also visit the Demo Center.

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