Is your Finance Department in the race this awards season?

OnBase_for_entertainment

For studios and stars, awards season is the time to shine. While the front office may get all the attention from January to March, those of us behind the scenes know it’s the Finance Department and administrative functions that keep the studios moving all year.

When studios and production companies are ready to keep up with 21st century challenges and align finance initiatives with the most critical business priorities, it’s time to go digital. Your Finance Department probably deserves an award already, but the right technology solution will confirm its star status.

Here’s how enterprise content management (ECM) can help.

Get rid of paper to reduce costs

Many companies underestimate the operational costs associated with handling paper documents.

Between printing, copying, postage, storing, filing and recycling, studies have found it can cost up to 31 times more to use paper instead of digital documents. Not to mention the cost of lost employee time sorting and chasing down documents, or the risk of lost information in the event that a paper file is damaged.

A substantial number of entertainment organizations are still paying monthly and yearly fees toward storage units housing decades of business and legal documentation. Surprisingly, some of the biggest studios in the industry today still have a substantial percentage of their lots dedicated to physical file storage.

Digitizing documents and information via scanning or another electronic data capture mechanism saves you space and resources, and ensures your critical data is backed up and, most importantly, secured. If there’s anything we all learned from the Sony hack it’s that information security needs to be the No. 1 priority for everyone in this industry.

Automate accounting processes to improve cash flow management

Nearly 70 percent of surveyed controllers indicated that improving visibility into cash flow and cash management was among their priorities for the year, according to a study conducted by the Institute of Financial Management. The entertainment industry is no exception.

Paper processes limit visibility into system and business health because the data is often poorly organized, information is not timely and decision-makers do not have access to key variables.

Automating accounting processes ensures data is extracted and matched with relevant documents. Workflow management then automatically routes information to the appropriate person at every step – including exceptions – from when the invoice is received to when it’s paid. This not only speeds up accounting cycles, but also allows users to see the quantity and dollar amount of invoices and incoming payment information in the queue at any given time.

This real-time visibility into cash flow helps finance leaders monitor business performance and health, analyze trends and exceptions in real time, and make proactive business decisions based on the most accurate information.

Integrate systems to improve staff productivity

With an integrated document management solution, you speed up the revenue and payment cycles for each project without adding staff. Users have instant access to invoice information and can search, retrieve and view corresponding documents without ever having to log out of their ERPs.

System integrations help studios and production companies keep up with the speed of business. Staff no longer have to wait for other employees to pull and deliver files, reducing the chance of lost, misplaced, or stolen invoices.

The right integration reduces training costs and time, as staff continue to work within their familiar business applications.

When your technology solution is in sync with your industry needs, you’re always ahead of the game – during awards season and throughout the year.

To learn more, take a look at how OnBase ECM supports the Entertainment industry.

Danielle Simer

Danielle Simer

Danielle Simer is a marketing portfolio manager at Hyland. Her mission is to share best practices and evangelize the power of enterprise content management (ECM) as a tool to automate paper-based processes and improve operations across accounting and finance, human resources, and contract management. Danielle joined Hyland after more than six years with a research and advisory firm devoted to helping senior executives manage their departments and teams more effectively. She received her bachelor’s degree from The Ohio State University and her MBA from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.

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