In grade school you may have been told “never mind what your neighbor is doing,” but smart finance pros know that keeping an eye on what their peers are doing is smart business.
Benchmarking the workings of your finance department against how others run their show is a great way to affirm you are on track, see where you can do better and even get some new ideas.
And you have a new resource to help you do that: The Benchmarking the Finance Function 2012 by staffing experts at Robert Half International.
From whether you tap temps to which budgeting tools will use, this data lets you see how what’s happening in your own finance department compares with others.
Take a look at some of the key benchmarks to come out of the new Robert Half report (you can download the entire thing here).
Benchmark #1: Hours Worked
Wondering whether the time your staffers are putting in is too much … or not enough? Take a look at the average weeks your peers are putting in:
- Finance Managers: 49 hours
- Non-management Employees: 42 hours
Benchmark #2: Temporary Help
Whether at year-end or during your busy season or until you can get some full-time bodies in there, many companies tap temps:
- 37% use interim help
- 63% don’t.
Benchmark #3: Outsourcing
Of course, you might also decide to offload some finance tasks to a third party altogether. Here’s what your peers are choosing to outsource:
- Tax (45%)
- Payroll (38%)
- Internal Audit (8%)
- Finance/Accounting (4%)
- Compliance (4%)
- Treasury (1%)
Benchmark #4: Primary Financial System Used
It’s likely your most-used technology. So what are your peers depending on day in and day out?
- ERP (81%)
- An In-House System (16%)
- Software as a Service (SaaS) (3%)
Benchmark #5: Budgeting and Planning Tool Used
Another time-consuming task in Finance (and one that will be here before you know it): budgeting. Take a gander at what other companies are trusting for this mission-critical task:
- Excel (61%)
- ERP (10%)
- Hyperion (8%)
- Cognos (6%)
- Legacy (1%)
- Other (13%)
- None (1%)
Benchmark #6: Tool/System Used for Account Reconciliation
Finally, with most companies reconciling between 100 and 500 accounts each quarter, it’s key to have a dependable system to do so. Here’s what your peers are using now:
- Manually reconcile (no system) (64%)
- A system developed internally (22%)
- Third-party software (14%)