The Meridian Monthly - Issue 3

Updated: Dec 16, 2021

December 2021

In this issue...
Solution Spotlight

Budgeting Tools

Over the last few years, there has been a huge innovation leap in the tools available to help decision-makers develop and manage financial plans and budgets.

The best budgeting tools are designed to directly interface with your organization’s existing enterprise software and data sources. They are utilized to develop, implement and monitor complex financial plans. These tools are highly scalable and customizable to the needs and structure of a variety of enterprises, both public and private.

New budgeting tools more easily allow decision-makers to gain meaningful insights to plan and adapt to dynamic and fast-changing financial situations.

The best solutions provide a vehicle to consolidate planning activities into a single user-friendly interface, thus moving away from legacy spreadsheet and database applications.

Key features often include:

  • A fully visible and traceable process from start to finish

  • An integrated toolset which allows end-users to collaborate and submit requests for management’s consideration as budget items are created

  • A centralized and single repository of historical and planned versions and perspectives

  • Cloud-based solutions that liberate organizations from hosting expensive and hardware-reliant information technology infrastructures

  • Easy-to-use modeling tools to help understand and analyze the impacts of what-if scenarios

  • Robust reporting features to allow enterprises to analyze and share meaningful insights within their organizations and to external parties

  • Automated budget book and financial report creation, which is especially critical for governments that must comply with legal mandates and provide taxpayers and policy-makers with transparent and easily digestible information

Meridian Partners has two decades of experience helping customers implement the optimal budgeting tools for their unique situation. From custom solutions to top tier solutions from SAP and Workday, Meridian Partners helps customers more easily meet their budgeting needs.

To learn more about how we can help you, contact us today!
ERP Tip of the Month

Are you prepared for the unexpected with your ERP?

As we approach 2022, it is time for an annual ERP checkup.

An ERP checkup can head off major issues that could bring your organization to a screeching halt. While there are many areas of an ERP that should be reviewed regularly, a few areas that can make a big impact or cause problems include:

  • Segregation of Duties and Access Rights

  • System Performance

  • Back Ups

  • Security

Segregation of Duties and Access Rights

During the year, the people in organizations change in many ways. There are new employees, people leaving, temporary staff, people changing jobs within an organization, and temporary permissions you may have provided to your support and development teams. It is important to ensure that your ERP system reflects the right level of access for each of these groups.

How to Prepare: Review ERP system access to ensure you know who can do what within the system, and it is aligned with organizational policies and procedures. If this is difficult, look at some automated tools that can help monitor and maintain. Most ERP systems have tools to help.

System Performance

As ERP systems change and evolve, most grow in size and require additional resources. There is nothing worse than having a system failure because it ran out of disk space, memory, or processing power, or users taking longer to do something. A small investment in this area can boost productivity, job satisfaction, and help avoid an untimely issue.

How to Prepare: Review system resources to check that they are operating within recommended guidelines and account for any future events or changes to the system.

Back Ups

A back up is only useful if it includes the information needed and it works. There are many reasons a system may need to be restored in whole or in part, ranging from human error to corrupt databases. Having a reliable back up can make an issue easier and quicker to recover from with less business impact.

How to Prepare: Review your back up strategy to make certain that backups reflect the cadence of your business operations, are working, include the right information, have been tested, and you have procedures to use. If you are in the Cloud, don't assume that this is occurring and everything is backed up.

Security

An ERP often stores and processes data critical to the operation of a business. This can include human resources, payroll, finance, supply chain, inventory, customers, and much more. It is important that you have the right protections in place to protect this information and review and test on a regular basis.

How to Prepare: Review the current system protections and incident response plan to ensure they encompass the present-day ERP system, not the one implemented a decade ago. Always keep your ERP solution and any integrated systems up to date with the latest patches, regularly review any known vulnerabilities, and make certain your password or authentication protections meet recommended standards and there are no default passwords in use. Last but not least, have a clear and communicated plan in place that covers what to do if a security incident does happen.

Need help with your annual check up? Meridian can help you review your ERP system to ensure it supports your customers and employees now and in the future. Contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation call with our experts.
Meet the Team
Each month, we highlight a key team member making a difference for our customers. This month, we would like to recognize Michael Rodriguez, Senior Planning Consultant.

Michael’s responsibilities include design, implementation and support of budget and financial planning tools. Michael is Deployment Certified with Workday Adaptive Planning and is trained with SAP Analytics Cloud. He is committed to exceeding client expectations and delivering proven budgeting and planning reports and insights.

Michael has years of financial management and budgeting experience both in the private and public sectors. Michael has worked as a Management and Budget Analyst at all levels of state government in Florida including the legislative, executive and judicial branches. He was also a Finance Director and Treasurer for a municipal government in the State of Colorado.

Michael holds a Masters Degree in Public Administration (MPA) and a graduate certification in Financial Management from Florida State University. He brings a unique skill set and life experiences to the Meridian team. Michael has dedicated the majority of his life to public service including years as a professionally licensed volunteer firefighter in the State of Colorado.

When not at Meridian, Michael can be found exploring the outdoors from the mountains of the western United States to the beaches and waterways of Florida. Michael is an expert skier and a former collegiate rower. He enjoys traveling the world in search of culturally rich experiences.

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Meridian Partners is a minority owned company and SBA-certified 8(a) leader in providing Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Business Intelligence, and Budgeting solutions. Meridian helps organizations maximize business processes to be more agile, efficient, and transparent through the optimization of their enterprise systems.