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In this episode from our series of SAP-focused finance podcasts, we look at how to tackle some of the issues around controls and validations for finance processes in SAP.

In the podcast, technology writer and editor Andy McCue talks to finance transformation expert Adrian Li, who has more than 20 years’ experience designing, building and running SAP ERP in both large and small organizations and across many industry sectors. Topics covered include:

  • What types of SAP controls and validations there are around finance and associated processes. Examples are checking for abnormal or adverse purchase price variances that might indicate pricing errors, doing checks that costs are on track and within budget, making sure stock/inventory figures are accurate.
  • Why these checks and balances are still very manual for many organizations and require highly skilled people to undertake time-consuming work.
  • How you can automate these controls and validations and improve the process – and how global dairy company Arla achieved this.
  • How finance automation reduces the need for manual checks, allows errors and issues to be picked up earlier in the month and ensures greater consistency.

In the podcast, Li explains the importance of controls and validations on the business.

He says: “It’s about really making sure that the financial records in SAP are complete, accurate, valid and reflect what’s happening in the business.”

And the impact of getting it wrong can be significant. Li says: “One of the bigger issues is often around stock. If the actual stock figures in SAP don’t reflect the actual stock position, when you try to sell something you can’t because SAP doesn’t see that stock.”

The overall benefit of automating controls and validations is that it improves both the speed and quality of the month-end close.

“With automation it’s always performed 100% accurately based on the rules you’ve defined… You can spot errors and issues much earlier in the month rather than leaving it until month-end. With automation you can do these checks and identify the errors very early on – within the day or hour that they occur – and get them corrected,” explains Li.

Find out how automation can relieve your SAP finance pains. Listen to the Redwood Finance Podcast now.

About The Author

Shak Akhtar's Avatar

Shak Akhtar

Shak Akhtar, General Manager of Finance Automation at Redwood Software, possesses extensive experience in finance and IT. With an accounting background with IBM and roles at SAP®, BEA and Wolters Kluwer/Tagetik, he brings a wealth of hands-on knowledge as he leads global initiatives in finance automation and record-to-report (R2R), facilitating client-led financial transformation.