Part 2 – Building a commercial manager toolkit

Stage two of our work with Robertson Group commenced in 2014. There were now twelve business groups and they were set for further growth.

Having implemented IBM® Planning Analytics and removed spreadsheets from the annual budget, monthly management accounts and weekly cash forecasts, the next step was to look at the cost value reconciliations (CVRs).

This presented a slightly different demand on the system – in addition to storing and aggregating data, it now needed to be able to enhance it. Robertson Group required the source data to be combined with manual inputs and for calculations to then be performed on it to produce new outputs; not just reports, transaction forms as well.

To add to the challenge, the user group of quantity surveyors were used to the freedom and flexibility of Excel and were resistant to change. They were unhappy at the prospect of moving to a centralised system where they wouldn’t be able to check for themselves exactly how a reported figure was being calculated.

In order to overcome this, we built the IBM® Planning Analytics model to exactly mirror the current spreadsheets, allowing the users to maintain their input methods and produce the same outputs. This system was the commercial manager toolkit.

In the five years that the commercial manager toolkit has been in place, Robertson Group have replaced an additional 9,000 islands of construction industry cost value reconciliation data with another data continent. This sits alongside the existing continent of budget, actual and forecast data created through the initial stages of our implementation.

Having successfully delivered the commercial manager toolkit, there was one business-critical management information process remaining to overhaul. Similarly Excel-intensive, the detailed monthly business performance and forecast reports needed to be addressed.

For a free healthcheck to review your planning processes contact us today.

Working with Spitfire Analytics has resulted in the Finance Team becoming an integral part of the business. We are now able to provide analysis and strategic advice on the future direction of the business, rather than spending our time poring over endless spreadsheets.

- Lee Boyle, Finance Director (Engineering), NG Bailey

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