Finance Blog 4

28 November 2019 / Simon Lewin - Product Owner

Welcome to the fourth product blog for Bromcom’s Finance module. To coincide with release 8.1, I am exploring the methods of reporting and why Bromcom’s Reporting options are so great and outdoing the competition.

“I have put the information into the system but how can I use it”?

The focus of recent updates including 8.1 is to make your life easier reviewing and reporting on your data. But what are the options to get your data out of the system? Bromcom’s solution provides you with a greater number of options to get your data out:-

  • Enquiries
  • Pre-built Reports
  • Custom Reports
  • Excel Add-In
  • Microsoft BI*
  • Therefore, whether you are filtering and drilling down through your data using the on screen enquiries, running pre-built reports, designing and adding your own custom reports, utilising your Excel skills to report on live data or utilising the data analysts capabilities of Microsoft BI* to report on live data, we have tried to give options that suits every eventuality.

    Enquiries

    Bromcom Finance is full of enquiry screens. You can quickly look for orders, invoices, journals etc, but do you know how exceptionally powerful the enquiry screens have become for reviewing and drilling into your posted journals and commitments? Our latest Chart of Accounts and Cost Centre enquiry pages and second to none, and we believe the most capable of their type enquiry pages available from any financial management solution. Our goal has always been to give you the ability to drill down, filter and analysis your data allowing you to very quickly review any posted information that you could want. We have users who have stated that this enquiry screen alone covers nearly all their operational enquiry and reporting needs. If you have not looked at our latest release, you will be missing out.

    The opening page of the unfiltered Chart of Accounts enquiry provided the reassurance of the Trial Balance and separate totals for income, expenditure and combined the latter including totals from the balance sheet. Drill down quickly to look at actuals or commitments, where applicable, for any ledger/fund or start filtering by groups, dates, periods, funds and/or types. Open a ledger, see a post, open the related journal, pick another row on the journal and drill into that ledger. Open the source transactions such as the invoice, payment, receipt and cashbook journal. See at a glance budget vs actual for groups and individually, with colour highlighting as the actual approaches the budget maximum. See the related reconciled statement per entry from the bank enquiry and the submitted VAT return from a VAT ledger enquiry.

    User Account

    Pre-built Reports

    The system comes with in excess of 50 build in financial reports covering all your standard needs. Most have purpose designed parameters pages to quickly filter to data you want. Each can be scheduled for automatic generation by the system when you want, previewed, exported and printed if you want a hard copy. Many however, are moving to the office and keep their produced reports in the “My Reports” section of the included document management system.

    Variations

    Custom Reports

    With most of the benefits of built-in reports such as scheduling, on-screen previews, filtering and exporting, custom reports give the added benefit that you can design your own from scratch or using an existing report from the number of examples that are supplied as standard, as the starting point and then adapting to your needs.

    Sibling

    Excel Add-In

    The Excel Add-In enables schools and those that give support to make use of their Excel skills to build reports, analysis and charts that can securely and easily access their live finance data. No exporting and importing is required. Run Microsoft Excel, enter your Bromcom login details to authenticate yourself with Bromcom MIS/Finance system and click on Bromcom’s refresh button in Excel! Easy! Then subject to your access rights giving you’re the necessary permission, Excel will retrieve live data according to the parameters that you have set in Excel.

    It may be a spreadsheet already created where you can now see the results from your up-to-date data, or else now time to build your report, charts and pivot tables etc to present the data using the power of Excel. This is not for everyone but just one of the huge range of options we give you to help get your data out and then use it to inform all those that need to know.

    You can even use this approach to populate spreadsheet(s) that you may need to fill in periodically for your local authority for example.

    Primary Assessment

    Microsoft BI*

    Bromcom enabled you to embed Business Intelligence (BI) dashboards right into the centre of the MIS/Finance solution; one login give you access to all the finance facilities and the BI dashboards from the same system! No coming out of the system to log into BI – no need to export data and import into BI – no need to have to put data into Excel and then link that to BI – with Bromcom we ensure that BI can access your live data to ensure at all times you can be informed of the current state of your finances! We have taken the complexity out of accessing your data from powerful solutions that can be expanded from the “out-of-the-box” BI dashboards to create any number of dashboards to suit your needs. Make sure that you use smart business intelligence to help inform budget holders and the senior leadership team to help the school have better control of its finances.

    Map

    Note: * In integrating to Microsoft BI, we utilise the Open data protocol (OData) to enable BI to obtain live data. This is a secure and trusted method to provide efficient data services for information transfer on Web pages. In fact, it is known as ISO/IEC 20802-1:2016. I bet you wanted to know that. The OData feed is fully extended for Bromcom MIS but is still being developed for Finance. Currently we have a handful of sample BI views to give a flavour of what is to come. In order to access the BI views you need to be licenced for our BI Viewer option in the Analysis module. If unsure, please contact Bromcom’s Customer Services (existing customers) or Sales team to discuss moving over to Bromcom for you analysis needs.

    Want to find out more?

    Do you wish to see a demonstration of our reporting options or have ideas for even more reports and enquiries? Please contact simon.lewin@bromcom.com to discuss your ideas or call our sales team on 020 8290 7171 to arrange a demonstration.