Leading Plant Nursery Saves Months of Budgeting and Planning by Enhancing Jet Reports with Bizview
- McCorkle Nurseries saved three days of budgeting work per month
- Cut down its cashflow and forecast planning process from three weeks to a couple of hours
- Gave users the autonomy to input information instead of emailing around the company
- Cut budget process by a full month annually
- Leveraged the advantage of real-time information
McCorkle Nurseries is a full-service grower of fine plants for both the retail and wholesale nursery industries, as well as for landscaping professionals across the Southeastern United States. Since 1942, the company has been dedicated to providing customers with the right plant, at the right time, and for the right price, while offering high quality customer service.
McCorkle Mastered Jet and Wanted More
McCorkle Nurseries is a unique business in the nursery and greenhouse industry in that they sell shrubs purchased from across the United States while also growing its own plants. Because the product is live, it’s vital for McCorkle Nurseries to keep close track of the process in the 18 months to three years that it takes the plants to grow enough to become ready for sale.
After being with its former ERP since 2000, McCorkle made the switch to Microsoft Dynamics Business Central (BC). Three months after implementing its new ERP, McCorkle Nurseries began using insightsoftware’s Jet Reports for its advanced operational and financial reporting capabilities in Microsoft Excel. Jet Reports empowered Tara Pounds, Accounting Manager with McCorkle Nurseries, to leverage the familiar interface of Excel by pulling templates and formulas she was already using.
“One of the things that led to the decision to go with Jet Reports was that the fact that it was Excel-based,” Pounds said. “I took existing templates and just went in and updated formulas to pull from the general ledger.”
Eventually, the business ran into challenges with its budgeting and planning process, which leaned heavily on multiple spreadsheets made by legacy employees including a previous CFO.
Leadership was able to make decisions, but they needed to double, triple, and sometimes quadruple check numbers. If they found an error along the way, it was time-consuming to fix–and Pounds often handled these complicated tasks alone.
“We were not pulling information directly from the ERP system,” said Pounds. “There was a lot of human interaction. That was ultimately the goal, to get everything tied to where it’s pulling information directly from the ERP so that there’s as little human interaction as possible.”
When the company hired a new CFO, it was time for a change. With the goal of pulling information directly from its ERP system and reducing human error, the business looked to Bizview for help with its budgeting and planning needs.
Plan for Success with Bizview and Jet
Before implementing Bizview, McCorkle had a multitude of unconnected systems. After demoing a range of different planning and budgeting solutions, the company chose Bizview. The two crucial factors in this decision were that Bizview integrates seamlessly with Jet Reports while offering competitive pricing.
“What led us to Bizview was the fact that we were already with Jet Reports,” said Pounds. “We were considering another option who would not have had that connection with Jet Reports and we wanted to tie everything together, Dynamics BC, Jet, and Bizview. The pricing was also very competitive, but the biggest thing was the connectivity between all programs which we look forward to utilizing fully in the future.”
Its intuitive connectivity effortlessly solved the problem of struggling with multiple, disparate pieces of software.
Bizview, combined with Jet, offered the company a variety of advantages, including:
- Shortening reporting cycles
- Speeding up variance analysis
- Gaining deeper visibility into planning processes
- Accessing real-time data
McCorkle began to implement Bizview in June of 2021, launching a kick-off and design phase. Pounds worked closely with insightsoftware staff throughout the process, meeting once or twice a week.
By October of the same year, the business kicked off its budget 2022 planning process. And within six months, Bizview was up and running, even after nearly two decades of working with their previous system.
“I worked very closely with our insightsoftware engineers to develop a solution that would solve our needs,” said Pounds. “I gave them our multitude of spreadsheets and we just went from there. I was so impressed that it took less far less time than expected to get it up and going.”
Significantly Shorter Reporting Cycles
By automatically combining plan and live actuals in one Excel report, Jet and Bizview dramatically reduced McCorkle’s reporting cycle. Pounds can easily add Bizview data into existing reports or create new reports in minutes. Eliminating time-consuming, error-prone data dumps has accelerated time-critical processes at McCorkle. With a faster process, Pounds can create more budget versions and analyze variances more frequently to improve budget and forecast accuracy.
“Because everything is in one central location within Bizview, we have the different input forms that feed data up into and build balance sheets, P&L, and cashflow forecasts. Accuracy increases because you’re only entering it in one spot.” Pounds explained. “You’re not entering it into multiple spots, worrying about someone going in and zeroing out a formula somewhere or bouncing information back and forth.”
“Jet and Bizview have completely changed my reporting process. What used to take months before Bizview, now takes a few weeks. This year, the CFO has given me the goal of completing the 2023 budget from start to finish in two weeks, where we did it in two to three months previously.”
A Boost in Collaboration
Bizview revolutionized McCorkle Nurseries’ budgeting and planning posture by granting the business the ability to make real-time changes within Bizview that feed into all forms and reports they use. Before the implementation, Pounds would attend planning meetings and take copious notes. Afterward, she would update spreadsheets so that leadership could see the changes that occurred during their meeting.
With Bizview’s interactive capabilities, Pounds can now update data during the same meetings and leadership will see her alterations immediately, saving two days’ worth of data entry.
“During budget meetings with managers, the CFO, and CEO, I have everything up on my screen and I can make changes while the CFO looks at them. It is huge for us.”
Sped up Variance Analysis
Bizview’s ability to work together with insightsoftware’s Jet suite of products has allowed McCorkle to streamline its processes and nurture better software integration throughout the business. With the addition of Bizview, Pounds and her CFO can analyze granular data within Microsoft Dynamics. They can drill down into balances at a transactional level and immediately address any variances, rather than waiting for them to be picked up later in the process.
“The complete budgeting and planning process was taking two to three months. And we were not always complete by the end of the actual calendar year. Going into the following year, we were still making adjustments or changes to the budget several weeks into the year we were budgeting,” said Pounds. “Just gathering and inputting information for the cash flow forecast would take the CFO two to three weeks. Then he’d have to do his scenario modelling on top of that. This year, with him using Bizview, it took him less than an hour to review and several hours when adjusting different scenarios. Cutting our time spent down by 90% easily.”
Deeper Visibility into Planning Processes
With Jet and Bizview, McCorkle enjoys easy access to data from any Microsoft Dynamics module. It can create reports that automatically track financial and operational plans without relying on IT. The combined strength of both products provides Pounds and the wider McCorkle team with immediate access to all the actuals data they need to reforecast more frequently and more accurately.
What used to take months before Bizview, now takes a few weeks. This year, the CFO has given me the goal of completing the 2023 budget from start to finish in two weeks, where we did it in two to three months previously.