March 3, 2020 – Halstatt, a family-owned investment firm specializing in real estate, private equity, venture capital, and other initiatives for a select number of family office and institutional investors, faced a bottleneck to growth and diversification with its use of an outdated Microsoft Dynamics GP (Great Plains) accounting application and spreadsheets. Upgrading to a modern, cloud financial system in Sage Intacct, the Florida-based firm is saving $1 million worth of accounting time each year and has accurate, timely data to help guide informed investment decisions.
Halstatt has doubled its assets under management since Sage Intacct was implemented in 2014. Overall finance efficiency has leapt 60%, and quarterly reporting time has been reduced from up to 100 hours to minutes with Sage Intacct. In 2019, the Florida-based firm also rolled out Sage Intacct Budgeting and Planning to eliminate painful spreadsheet-based budgeting.
Halstatt evaluated Oracle NetSuite and Microsoft Dynamics before making its move to Sage Intacct. One of the key deciding factors for choosing Sage Intacct was the fact it is the first and only preferred financial management system for the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). “We decided to go with Sage Intacct because it's easy to use, cloud-based, and is backed by the AICPA,” said Amanda Goebel, Halstatt senior accountant. "Since implementing Sage Intacct, we've streamlined pretty much every process we have. Sage Intacct’s time savings are significant for us because we’re able to focus more time researching and analyzing additional investments."
After implementing Sage Intacct, Halstatt realized game-changing benefits, including:
- Downsized accounting team more than 3x: Halstatt trimmed accounting staff from seven to just two individuals, with five repurposed elsewhere in the company. That contributes to a $1 million annual savings, while Halstatt can close its monthly books 65% faster.
- Cut reporting time from 100 hours to minutes: A board book and consolidated reports previously took 80 to 100 hours to generate using Microsoft Dynamics and spreadsheets. That information can now be produced in minutes through Sage Intacct, freeing accounting staff to focus on value-add work.
- Reduced audit costs by $100,000 a year: Halstatt is saving $100,000 annually through lower audit fees and reduced preparation and response time by internal accounting staff. External auditors are spending just two weeks on site — down from four to six weeks before Sage Intacct was implemented.
- Gained efficiency through integration: Connecting Sage Intacct with a Nexonia expense reporting application and AMEX Vendor Payment Services enabled Halstatt to reduce check fees from $36 to $4. It's also streamlined processes and improved data accuracy by connecting Sage Intacct with a FloQast close management application.
- Streamlined budget processes: Halstatt has eliminated a “nightmare” of spreadsheet-based budgeting with Sage Intacct Budgeting and Planning. “It saves us many, many hours because we don't have to have meetings and send emails back and forth with different budget versions," Goebel said. “We could probably do budgets in a week, instead of a month.”
- Accelerated valuation reporting: Halstatt used to do asset valuation reporting just once a year because the exercise could take 100 hours. The firm now does valuation reporting quarterly in a matter of hours and has Sage Intacct dashboards that help stakeholders track key investment metrics.
“Sage Intacct's flexibility has given us a lot more real-time information that has helped us with our investment strategy," Goebel said. "It allows us to make decisions in hours versus days or weeks, so we don't miss out on any investment opportunities.”