Delegation’s tough. Especially when you’re an executive. You might have the clearest and most efficient solution for how a task in your company needs to be accomplished, but that doesn’t mean it’s the best use of your time. Instead, you need to hand over the reins and let someone (or something) do the hard work for you, and not doing it yourself can result in outright panic.
CFOs can find themselves in a similar predicament: as the tasks and duties at the heart of finance and accounting have evolved in the past decade, automation promises to simplify the routine tasks that often burden the finance team. But the benefits of automation outweigh the discomfort a CFO might face, and the simple fact is that CFOs who don’t accept automation into their job are losing the competitive edge. So come dip your toe in the water of automation with Liquid.
Without further ado, here’s 7 reasons why CFOs should adopt automation in their workflow.
1. Automation saves time
Time is money, and the tasks that fall under the finance team’s jurisdiction require both. Invoices need to be matched, bank details need to be confirmed, and payments need to be recorded in the company’s books. But by integrating systems like Liquid’s contractor and vendor management OS with QuickBooks, automation completes these tasks with minimal human intervention. That can mean hours —if not days — of saved manpower.
2. Automation prevents mistakes
Spreadsheets are at the heart of a CFO’s operations. As well as the periphery, the background, and the foundation: it’s spreadsheets all the way down. And every cell is an opportunity for human error, from a single missed keystroke or poorly written formula to a stale reference to an outdated sheet. The more spreadsheets in operation, the more chances there are for errors to creep in undetected. Automating your workflow means fewer hand-keyed entries and formulas, and that means fewer opportunities for errors.
3. Automation frees workers from brain-dead rote tasks
In addition to the time every task takes, work also requires willpower and adds to a team’s decision fatigue. But by offloading processes to automation, CFOs can help eliminate some of the more boring and soul-sucking tasks that plague the finance team, like hunting down contracts and scopes of work in a company’s cloud drive or manually checking whether an invoice has already been paid. This means the team has more enthusiasm — and overall zest for life — that they can bring to other projects or initiatives in the company.
4. Automation provides quick scaling for growth
When routine processes are automated, it means more work can be performed with little additional workload. The time required on the front end to correctly enter information pays off exponentially later on, allowing the finance team to do what it does best: adding value to the business through keen analysis of results.
5. Automation allows you to cancel your subscriptions (and save $$$)
There’s no shortage of subscription services your team may be paying for: Google Drive and Dropbox for contract and document storage, Docusign for signing documents (naturally), Expensify to track expenses, etc. Automation - and automated services like Liquid – where all the parts speak to one another – integrate these services in order for automation to be possible. But the added benefit is that it frees your team from paying yet another monthly subscription and remembering yet another password.
6. Automation allows you to deep-dive at a moment’s notice
For automation to work smoothly, it has to keep your company’s financial data cleanly organized and up-to-date. And as we all know, organized, relevant information empowers a CFO to get a clear picture of a company’s spend, projections, and runway without hours of preparation and research.
7. Automation keeps your employees and contractors happy
Consider how direct deposit has changed getting paid: it’s eliminated the need to print and sign checks, mail them out (which could result in lost/reprinted checks), and saves time for employees who no longer have to wait for their paycheck and find the time to deposit it. Ultimately, employees get paid faster and with fewer chances for things to go wrong. Automation provides those same benefits, but system-wide: faster invoice matching, account verification, and payments mean your global team gets their money securely and quickly. And happy workers mean better work.
How to get started with automation
You’re probably already accustomed to some level of automation if you’re already using QuickBooks or spreadsheets. Other opportunities to automate and integrate are dependent on the type of business and tech stack, which Liquid has discussed in depth. If you’re an SMB with a global team of contractors and vendors, Liquid offers a full suite of tools to manage your contractors with ease, including automated invoice matching, global invoice payments in multiple currencies, and built-in spend controls. Get ready to scale quickly and punch above your weight with a custom-built team for every new project. Contact Liquid today for an in-person demo.