Three years ago, I made the leap from public to private accounting. I was ready to bring in my public accounting knowledge into my new job and get into the details. When I started at this new company, I really wanted to learn the process quickly and get ready to tackle my first close. Instead I found myself waiting for upper management’s time to clear up so they could train me on my month-end tasks. During these trainings, I would struggle to write everything down quickly (nothing was documented) and when I would get back to my desk, I would retrace all the steps we went over in the training to make sure I was prepared for my first close.
My transition to my next internal accounting job was much smoother. I caught on to the close process in just a few short days, without having to ask people too many questions about where I could find files and what the process was for reconciling accounts. The reason for this easy transition was this company had implemented a system to optimize their accounting close process called FloQast.
Understanding the Process
Logging into FloQast and seeing what I was assigned to allowed me to get a head start on training and take some initiative into understanding the process. With FloQast I had access to last month’s checklist, who performed the tasks, and the supporting excel files to reference. In addition, being able to see deadlines allowed me to prioritize my work. Through the self-onboarding I got very familiar with the close process and only needed to go to my manager with specific questions about the close.
With the FloQast system, you don’t have to waste time looking for files: everything is in the folder related to accounting process and saved the same way each month. Even after I had been with my company for a few months, my direct report would suddenly remember an annual process that they hadn’t done on time, such as reviewing employee rates for capitalized labor. He would then tell me he wasn’t sure where the supporting documentation was saved. With the FloQast system, if something is documented as an annual process, you won’t forget about it and you’ll know exactly where to look when it comes time to do it. In addition, when auditors come on site and ask for documentation from a prior period, you can easily pull the supporting documentation they need, even if you weren’t the one who performed the work.
Understanding the Bigger Picture
When joining a new team, it is helpful to understand not only your own responsibilities, but the responsibilities of those around you. This is not only good for when you have questions, but it is helpful when you are ready to add some more work to your plate. It is easier to set goals for yourself and understand what it takes to the next level, if you can actually visualize what that next level will look like.
Starting at a new company can be scary and overwhelming. No matter which level you are in your accounting career, there are different ways companies do things and you eventually have to adapt to new processes and best practices, in addition to a new office culture. FloQast allows you to understand the processes, organization, and hierarchy on your new team to ensure a smooth onboarding that will benefit everyone involved.