I used to see it all the time when advising clients. The pain of subpar systems and minimal financial visibility was evident from the first conversation with a CEO, Founder, or key leader at a rapidly changing organization. The lack of finance talent combined with disjointed systems leaves entrepreneurial leaders saddled with inefficient processes that ripple through the business. The impact is immense as it slows down essential daily operations, and due to no clear financial picture of the current or future state, leads to costly financial decisions that stifle or stop growth.
The problem: Financial frustration
Financial frustration can be caused by many things, here are some common examples -
- ERP implementations gone sideways: Too often entrepreneurs take the leap of faith from Quickbooks Online (QBO) or Xero to Netsuite or Sage in hopes of unlocking the elusive financial and operational analytics to guide their business. After 6 months (and a 6 figure investment) they are often left disappointed as implementations miss key business process requirements, and the reporting and analytics modules do not deliver as promised.
- Introducing a new CRM: These sweeping system changes get put into place for sales teams with no process or data discipline, resulting in problematic pipelines and disjointed coordination with operations and finance to plan and manage for the future.
- Accounting systems with poor data integration: This results in a limited ability to drive accurate and timely financial reporting, let alone build financial projections for leadership.
- Using Excel to pick up the slack: Usually thanks to the herculean efforts of Founders and their accounting/finance teams, if they are lucky enough to have a CFO or knowledgeable finance person in-house. Several 40+ hour weeks are required to integrate and sanitize data across the organization before finance teams can even start forward-looking planning. This of course assumes they even have the bandwidth and tools to move beyond closing the books and sending basic financial statements.
The solution: A plug-and-play FP&A solution tailored to your business
All of these points of frustration are the exact environment that generated the vision for Clockwork. There is now an easier and more streamlined way to plan, manage, and predict finances for entrepreneurs and their finance teams or advisors. By simply connecting to your QBO or Xero account, Clockwork automatically delivers intelligent financial projections, weekly cash flow forecasts, and essential financial/operational metrics in a matter of minutes.
We did not stop there. Given our special appreciation for the struggle to implement systems, we not only shaved that to minutes with Clockwork, but we also mapped out how to fully customize your financial visibility AND establish a Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A) process in a fraction of the time (and for free!). Candidly, most software providers cut bait after implementation unless you have deep pockets to pay for support.
The Power of 3: Clockwork's activation program
The Power of 3 is our industry-leading customer activation program. You are busy enough juggling the day-to-day chaos, so we take the pain away with the only true plug-and-play solution to drive robust and automated FP&A. We see countless organizations stop their financial frustrations by turning to Clockwork as a digital CFO that learns/understands their business's behavior, while the entrepreneur seamlessly fine-tunes the financial picture of the future. This has the potential to extend your lifecycle on QBO or Xero by years with Clockwork and promotes a leaner, faster, and smarter way of scaling your business.
Here's what to expect when you signup for Clockwork -
- 3 minutes to create your account: That is it. Sign up, connect your QuickBooks Online or Xero Account, and have automatic CFO-level financial projections (5-year), a 52-week cash flow forecast, and unlimited custom metrics/KPIs in less than 3 minutes. Ditch the solutions that require a degree in accounting/finance and multiple weeks of set-up time.
- 3 hours to fully customize: This includes your unique financial model, 52-week cash flow forecast, and executive dashboard with critical financial and operational metrics/KPIs. In addition, elevate to Board-room level strategy by building "what if" scenario models to depict upside or downside circumstances in minutes versus months.
- 3 weeks to operationalize FP&A: Full integration into your daily/weekly/monthly rhythm. Once set up and fully customized in a couple of hours, you are ready to put the power of Clockwork into action with complete financial visibility to drive proactive operational decision-making. No more stressful guessing games when investigating cash flow to cover payroll, pay bonuses, or make an expensive hiring decision for a critical role.
We recommend the following operating rhythm to generate the best business impact with your newfound CFO-level insights and visibility into the future.
- Daily: Go ahead and check your bank account per ritual, but log in to Clockwork to see both the current cash position and a precision weekly forecast up to 52 weeks out. Clockwork provides hourly updates and automatically incorporates all planned cash movements from your financial model.
- Weekly: You know your business best. Leverage Clockwork's Cash Flow model to update customer collections, vendor payments, payroll timing, new hire start dates, etc. Then, automatically see the cash flow impact and where the business is trending so you can stay ahead of key decision points.
- Monthly: Implement monthly financial reviews with Clockwork as your command center. On a monthly basis, once the books are closed, you can facilitate a CFO-level financial review to understand performance and course correct where needed. Swiftly assess performance vs. plan (budget vs. actual) and drive variance analyses across revenue, gross profit, operating expenses, and EBITDA within the Financial Model. Adjust any forecast assumptions based on your latest performance and new market information with just a few clicks, then see automatic updates to your projections and cash flow forecast. Lastly, keep a keen eye on the financial and operational metrics which demonstrate your business health. Use the Metrics dashboard to easily spot trends and inform your next strategic move (e.g., pricing strategies, profitability analysis, expense ratios, etc.).
If you're interested in learning more about how Clockwork can help revolutionize your finances, get in touch with our team or signup for a free trial. We're happy to get you set up and put The Power of 3 to work for your unique needs!
To learn more about how Clockwork helps small businesses realize and work towards a better financial future, create your account to start a free 14-day trial (no credit card required). Connect your QuickBooks Online or Xero account to create your first financial model in minutes.