How manual data entry is putting your financial management in jeopardy

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Manual CSV uploads don’t cut it anymore

Automation is the key to success in today’s financial landscape. You can tap to pay for your morning coffee, you can manage your investments on your phone, and you can transfer money anytime, anywhere. So why are you still manually importing CSV files to your ERP software every month? 

For every task you and your team are doing manually, you’re losing precious time that could be better spent making strategic decisions. Plus, you risk making mistakes every time you take on manual data entry. One mistake, no matter how small or trivial, could throw off all of your other data. This could lead to incorrect reporting, planning, and forecasting, setting your business back immeasurably. So how do you automate your data flow and ensure your books are done right? That’s where Brex comes in.  

The Brex + NetSuite integration

Brex is the first corporate credit card to integrate directly with NetSuite. We know that you and your finance team are only human, and you may make mistakes when tasked with transferring all of your credit card transaction data into your ERP. Our NetSuite credit card integration reduces the risks of manual expense categorization by letting you map categories directly from Brex to NetSuite. Plus, there’s no need to waste time uploading CSV files at the end of the month. It’s the best solution for fast-growing businesses, and it prevents a host of sticky issues.

Incorrect data in your ERP 

Downloading CSV files from various sources and uploading them to NetSuite introduces the possibility of making mistakes that could have disastrous downstream effects. For example, say you’re pulling data from your corporate credit card. You think you’re pulling data for the month of June to close the books, but you’re distracted and accidentally pull data from April. The months are the same length, and you’re moving really quickly trying to get these books closed, so you don’t notice the mistake. You convert everything to the format you need and upload it to your ERP. Then you upload the rest of the June data, and you go through the process of closing the books for the month.

You think your revenue, income, and expense reports accurately reflect was has happened in June, but little do you know you have erroneous data throwing off all of your numbers. And this is just one of many errors than can occur when you handle your data flow manually. That’s why it’s so essential to have a NetSuite ERP credit card integration.

Faulty forecasting and incorrect calls

So you’ve made an error with your June books. How much can that really impact? Won’t you figure it out before year end? While it’s possible errors may be caught by audits, it’s not prudent to rely on after-the-fact checks to ensure your data is clean. 

At your big July board meeting, you’re going to present numbers that include the first two quarters of the year and make a big pitch for your next round of funding. The board takes a look at your income statement and like what they see. Your company is bringing in revenue with some big deals closed these past six months. Then the board checks out your cash flows and sees that your operational spending was down, especially in Q2 this year. They’re impressed with how you are keeping the company lean as you grow, and there is talk of more funding to accelerate this growth. Your team is very happy and excited for what’s to come.

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Costly cleanup, embarrassing revelations

Now that things are progressing, the venture capital firm you’re working with has assigned you a team member who is handling due diligence. They partner with a member of your finance team and dive into the numbers. The VC firm was impressed with your low spending in Q2, so the due diligence team dives in and double-checks all of the data on your cash flow statement. 

When they pull up your ERP, they notice that credit card transaction data in April and June was really low, but increased in May. They dig in further and see that April and June look identical, so they head over to the credit card provider and pull the monthly data. This is when they find out that credit card spending in June was actually much higher than April and May. It seems there were a lot of travel expenses for an engineering conference, plus the marketing team hosted a big hiring happy hour. As it turns out, April was an unusually low month for credit card spending, and with your current growth plans, June may be more typical. This error is flagged to the VC firm, and now the deal is on-hold while they go through your books with a fine-toothed comb.

Audit headaches

But what if you hadn’t had that board meeting? Maybe you would’ve gone on not knowing your error, creating strategic plans based on faulty data. But then it comes time for an external audit. Your auditor is deep into your records and sees that you’ve got duplicate transaction data for the month of June. It takes her hours to pull apart where the bad data came from, then hours more to pull in the correct info and update your books. Your team is blindsided. They’ve been going on this version of historical spending to create their future plans, and now they have to go through the planning process all over again to ensure they’re making the right calls based on the correct data.

Automation means efficient, effective financial management

This is time and money that you wouldn’t need to be spending if you had directly integrated the data flow into your ERP. With Brex, we built an ERP credit card integration because we know how essential it is to get things right the first time. You can’t move fast and grow your business if you’re spending precious time fixing your books. You can’t efficiently manage monthly expenses if you are manually uploading CSV files, wasting time, and risking errors with your books. With the Brex and Netsuite integration you can save time, increase efficiency, and close your books faster.

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