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The Power of Flash Reporting in Banks

by Simon Goble on November 7, 2016

Topics: Financial Reporting | Banking Business Intelligence

In my recent interview with BankBI partner Noel Stubbs, we discussed the benefits of flash reporting in banks.

Month-End Flash Reporting

It happens in most banks, where initial numbers are produced on day one, to give an early view of banking performance. You then go through the whole month-end close process and then the final numbers come out and are circulated on day ten, for example.

So that day one flash is pre-adjustments and then you can produce updated versions of that on day two, three, four etc. so people have a good idea of month-end numbers close to month-end.

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Should those flash reports be available on every day of the month?

Yes. There should be daily numbers produced which is the P&L account, the balance sheet and sales trends. The issue there for P&L is that you can only really look at income, you can’t look at costs because costs typically are affected by monthly payday and the end of the month bills etc.

Certainly, you can track income, particularly with an accruing core banking system where you can see a true reflection of the daily income. Then by the time you get to the end of the month you know what your income is going to be, you know whether it is going to be good or bad.

What do you want to see from a sales perspective?

You want to see a product by product value and volume report vs. targets for loans and deposits. You want to see what the current outstanding portfolio is, how many you have sold and the value of what you have sold. This is what takes the time, is putting the target in there for these comparisons.

That’s quite a big deal working out what the target should be. How are you going to get that target? By adding up all of the individual targets? But when you do that does that give you a sensible number? So there needs to be a target system in place that matches top-down strategic planning with bottom-up target setting.

The planning process obviously has to be a top-down approach with a strategic view and then you work backwards from there.

So clearly it’s important to get the strategic view but then it’s also important to translate that into the targets at the individual level.

Part of this is understanding how sales have occurred in the past and the results of marketing in trends for different products, spikes when you did a mortgage push a few months ago for example.

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