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4 Ways Unauthorized Changes to Your FP&A and Close Systems Can Harm Your Business

Chuck Czajkowski | | September 24, 2019

Whether intentional or unintentional, changes to your FP&A and close systems can have serious consequences for your business.

 
The much-maligned audit process—already a source of dread and panic for organizations that undergo it—can become even more unpleasant if auditors discover that changes have been made to your Hyperion environment without you knowing about it.

In this article, we’ll discuss 4 possible repercussions that might befall your organization when changes go unnoticed.

1. Poor decision-making

Incorrect changes to your chart of accounts, or to your calculation rules in Oracle Hyperion, may produce results that are wholly inaccurate. Even a minor alteration can have a major effect on the entire reporting pipeline if the user doesn’t understand what the change will do to other reports.

Of course, your finance team depends on the correctness of these results in order to draw up future budgets and forecasts. A single erroneous figure can easily create a ripple effect that will lead your company down the wrong path.

2. Incorrect reports

The consequences of inaccurate data aren’t just limited to your own business forecasts. As soon as you include wrong information in your reports to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, your company is exposed to potential fines and other penalties.

In February 2019, for example, the car rental company Hertz agreed to settle SEC fraud charges with a $16 million fine, after making numerous accounting errors that caused it to misstate its pre-tax income. Other companies recently fined by the SEC for accounting errors include Bank of America and the financial technology company Jack Henry & Associates.

3. IT instability

Incorrect changes might not just shake things up on the finance side of things, but on the IT side as well. Security flaws, instability, and system crashes are just a few possible consequences when employees alter something in your environment.

Accidentally creating a vulnerability, in particular, can be disastrous for your business. If employees gain unauthorized access to confidential files and documents, you may soon have a case of theft or insider trading on your hands.

4. More unpleasant audits

When auditors discover that your organization is struggling to adequately control its IT environment, they certainly won’t be happy. For one, the length of the audit process will increase as auditors go over your business with a fine-toothed comb. Auditors may also increase their hourly rates to penalize you for the issues that they uncover.

Conclusion

With the potential consequences of unauthorized changes so drastic, what can you possibly do to prevent them?

The good news is that you can take steps to dramatically improve visibility and oversight into your IT environment. Datavail’s Accelatis software for Oracle Hyperion is a performance tuning and change management solution that makes it easy to understand how individual changes have affected your Hyperion operations.

Among its other features, Accelatis helps you track the history of files and artifacts in Hyperion and can notify you when changes occur. This functionality provides a full picture of your Hyperion change history so that you can fix any mistakes before the auditors arrive.

To learn more about how Accelatis can track changes in your FP&A and close systems and optimize your deployment, download Datavail’s white paper, You Did What?? See Changes in Your FP&A and Close Systems (Before the Auditors Do).

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