Financial reporting in Power BI or in a CPM Solution?
Financial analysis and reporting are the bedrocks of modern business. They provide businesses with snapshots of activities, objectively identifying strengths, weaknesses and highlighting opportunities.
But the question often comes up: should you use Power BI visualization tools for building and maintaining financial reports? Or CPM solutions?
The answer is not entirely clear.
What is CPM?
Corporate Performance Management Software systems are purpose built, financial reporting and consolidating business tools. They are specifically built for accounting teams, and can consolidate data to create professionally formatted financial reports.
Some other features include:
- Forecasting processes
- Account Reconciliation (AR,AP)
- Inventory Turnover Analysis
- Managing budgets
- Creating Profit & Loss, Balance Sheets and Cash Flow Statements
- Advanced budgeting functionality
- Business planning – HR modelling, inventory modelling, sales forecasting etc
CPM financial reporting solutions can streamline your financial process, budgeting and deliver financial reports, and this can all be run from the cloud.
What is Power BI
Power BI, also known as Business Intelligence tools, are built for dashboards and have great visualizations. However the reality is, Power BI was never designed for reporting. That means that after installing Power BI and attempting to do financial reports on it, your accounting team will be going back to the basics such as the ‘old faithful’ Excel.
Power BI definitely has a few strengths. Visually, it is extremely powerful, and it’s list of integrations are endless. However, the one area Power BI is going to fall down in is the ability to completely customize your reporting outside of the standard areas. Power BI uses a proprietary front end, it is purpose built. No doubt there are integrations that get it places, but ultimately the end game is using only what you are given.
The solution is to use these products together, and add more.
Each type of product has its strengths and weaknesses, so if it allows for multiple integrations, then why not make your business’s financial management as effective as possible by using both?
CPM tools are great for creating reports, while Power BI tools offer high quality visualizations for dashboards and analysis. The key is to be able to combine the tools to suit your reporting needs.
Unlike Power BI, Velixo has no purpose built front-end. Velixo’s front-end is the Powerful Microsoft Excel, which requires skills almost every person who has ever used a computer has acquired. The possibilities are endless, as the ability to extend the uses of Velixo comes in many facets. Firstly, it is already extended by the ever growing library of Microsoft Excel Functions, allowing you to perform complex and custom functions, manipulated over as many workbooks as possible. If that isn’t enough, you can further extend the functionality using VBA code and Macro’s, to automate daily tasks.
The overlap comes when you begin to visualize Power BI. Use the data that has already been manipulated in Excel, consolidated across multiple sources and then use that as a connecting source to potentially visualize your data in Power BI if necessary.
For more information about how Velixo can help you create accurate and in depth financial reports in minutes, contact us at [email protected].