Accounting Software and Devolved Accounting

Here’s a quick guide to explain devolved accounting, and how it can help your finance team become more efficient and freed up to work on the more important strategic tasks.

So, what is devolved accounting? In simple terms, it means allowing non-financial staff to take on some of the more administrative tasks that are involved in accounting and finance. This could mean that departmental managers get easier and quicker access to financial data (saving you the task of finding it for them), or it could be individuals updating their own expenditure within the finance system itself. Not only does this sort of accounting reduce the workload for the finance team, but it also speeds up the whole accounting process, so even the rest of the organisation will see improve efficiency.

Here’s a pick of the common challenges you may recognise in your own organisation that could be solved more efficiently by adopting this super devolved approach.

The finance team’s resources are stretched
Many finance departments can spend days and days collating customised reports for senior management, budget holders and so on. Instead it would make much more sense to introduce ready-made customised reports that can be sent out automatically via email weekly, monthly or even daily. You could also allow managers easy access to reports themselves at any time of the day.

The finance system is intimidating
Non-finance staff may feel intimidated with new software, and struggle to find the right information they want quickly. Modern accounting software does away with clunky navigation and usability. Reporting dashboards that can be customised to whatever the user needs allows them to instantly access this sort of information and gain insight at a glance.

Waiting for approval
For growing organisations, office branches begin to open up, expanding your reach across the country. But of course this means that approving invoices, POs or anything else can become a task if you’re waiting on someone else at the country; end of the country, or even in a different country! Devolved accounting will change this by using electronic documents only that sit within the system itself, or can be emailed to the relevant person to authorise.

Giving budget holder easy and quick access to their budget will help avoid the risk of overspending. What’s more, this information can be updated in real-time by both the budget holder and finance staff.

There are even more ways that devolved accounting could help your organisation. Have a think about how your organisation works, and where the workload bottlenecks lie.