SandPoint Promotes Kelly Darren to Lead New BlackLine Practice

(BLOOMFIELD HILLS, MI) February 13, 2017: SandPoint Consulting, a SAP BPC implementation firm, announces the promotion of Kelly Darren, CPA and BlackLine Specialist, to launch SandPoint’s BlackLine Practice.

SandPoint is poised to expand its BlackLine services.  Darren, who has implemented BlackLine for eight years, will lead this new practice.  Her main responsibility will be supporting BlackLine customers to implement and leverage BlackLine’s Financial Close Management solutions.

Says Darren, “The financial close process can be challenging for corporations and BlackLine is an ideal solution to improve these demanding requirements. Their cloud software automates and controls the entire financial close process. SandPoint’s expertise in the close process makes us the perfect partner to implement BlackLine’s modules.”

Many of SandPoint’s existing customers are currently utilizing BlackLine reconciliation and task modules.  It’s SandPoints goal to help these companies continue to automate their close process by rolling out Journal and Intercompany Hub.

Bryan Wirthlin, Founder and President of SandPoint acknowledged, “We’re excited to take our BlackLine partnership to the next level, and have Darren lead the practice.  Her long history and experience with BlackLine will help our clients improve their efficiencies around the financial close process.  SandPoint also looks forward to helping BlackLine implement RunBook’s smart close, a SAP integrated product.”

To sum it up, he says, “SandPoint’s knowledge of the complexities of a close process is positioned to offer our clients more BlackLine value.”

About SandPoint Consulting

Headquartered in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, SandPoint Consulting, a BPC Silver Partner, provides one-on-one BPC consulting, beginning to end. Since 2001, they have implemented world-class SAP® Business Planning and Consolidation (BPC) productivity solutions to companies of all sizes.

BPC SKILLS-BUILDING: A KEY PROJECT OUTCOME

SANDPOINT CONSULTING BPC Project Requirements June 28, 2016

Having business process and project requirements defined before your BPC project begins is crucial to the overall success of the project.  These requirements should include the key business processes your company is looking to improve with BPC.  If your project begins without defined process and project requirements you risk missing project milestones, having budget overages, and creating a BPC solution that doesn’t meet the needs of its end-users. Before the BPC blueprint and design begin, SandPoint recommends holding a project workshop to help outline and define the business requirements and project goals.  This workshop is completed before the design and blueprint and the outcome of the workshop will serve as a basis for the statement of work (SOW) and highlight process areas that need to be discussed internally and agreed upon before the project begins.

BRYAN WIRTHLIN | President | SandPoint Consulting

SANDPOINT CONSULTING
Discussing System Changes with Auditors 7 Tips to Make It Easy
June 22, 2016

Discussing System Changes with Auditors — 7 Tips to Make It Easy

Communicating system changes with internal and external audit can be a difficult process.  Below are tips on how to improve your experience and avoid potential misunderstandings.

    1. Document, document, document!  In the eyes of an auditor, if you didn’t document a risk, you didn’t consider the risk or plan for a mitigating procedure. Clearly understand and document your objectives, potential risks and changes.

      Determine if you’re making the change merely for cosmetic reasons or if you’re trying to eliminate a significant risk/impediment to your daily operations. Document throughout the entire process, including planning, execution, and completion/finalization.

    2. Put on your other hat — try to think like an auditor. Throughout the planning and execution phases, approach your proposal from a detached point of view and objectively evaluate the risks of the change you’re making.
    3. Develop a testing plan and stick to it.  Test (and document) every possible outcome that could reasonably (and sometimes not so reasonably) occur.  Again, documentation is the key!
    4. Don’t just hand off all of your hard work.  Schedule a kick-off meeting to discuss what you did and how you documented it.  Determine and discuss how your evidence will be made available.
    1. Schedule times to go through each major artifact.  Managing the testing evaluation process is key as many audit teams frequently develop and perform testing plans independently.
    1. Spend the extra time and effort to ensure the audit team understands all the procedures.  Be sensitive, especially when working with a Big Four firm and less than senior individuals.  Misunderstandings with the audit team may not be your fault, but they will be your problem.
    2. When a conflict arises, don’t sacrifice operational efficiencies for the sake of compromise.  It’s the job of auditors to ensure you’re doing things safely, however it’s your job to ensure the business is running as effectively and efficiently as possible.  If you reach an impasse, enlist the help of a third party to suggest other solutions and possible outcomes.  Don’t let someone bully you into a bad solution by using the “Internal Controls” or “SOX says so” arguments.

This time, it also expected there will be over 130 matches which take place in 11 states for the duration of over 13 weeks

Brian Henneuse, CPA | Principal Consultant | SandPoint Consulting

SANDPOINT CONSULTING
SAP BPC Classic vs Embedded Version
June 10, 2016

The embedded version of BPC is growing its footprint on the BPC landscape.  For companies that want to have their BW team manage the dimensionality and other aspects of administration for BPC, this will be a welcome change.  However, the embedded version may not be for everyone.  Many customers like to develop custom hierarchies and maintain custom member properties.  In the embedded version, those items will need to be maintained in BW instead of the BPC administration interface.

Some companies may allow Finance administrators access to their BW environment, but if not, there may be a bottle neck effect of having to submit hierarchy and property changes to a third party with BW access.  Depending on your company’s controls environment, the embedded version may be much harder to maintain than the standard or classic version.  Be sure that you discuss the implications to both approaches thoroughly in the design phase before you decide whether to implement the embedded version or not.

Jerry Argabrite, VP of CONSULTING | SANDPOINT CONSULTING
BUSINESS TECHNOLOGY CONFERENCE SAPPHIRE NOW
ASUG Annual Conference
May 17-19, 2016

sapsaphire

SAPPHIRE NOW | ASUG Annual Conference

SandPoint Consulting Inc. at

Orlando, Florida – May 17-19, 2016

REGISTER TODAY!

SAP SAPPHIRE NOW | ASUG Annual Conference

Three Days of Networking

Two Conferences – One Location

Please join SandPoint Consulting (Booth 1352) at SAPPHIRE NOW

and ASUG Annual Conference May 17-19, 2016 – the largest global

business technology event, music gadgets hosted by SAP and ASUG. Connect with

the community that uses SAP software every day and learn how to

enable your digital business strategy and get more from your

technology investment.

When planning your conference agenda, please don’t miss attending

SandPoint’s BPC presentation with Coca-Cola Bottling:

Wednesday May 18, 2016 |  12:45 PM – 01:45 PM | S320A

Managing Rapid Growth with SAP Business Planning and

Consolidation 10.1

SANDPOINT CONSULTING
Using SAP Integrators on BPC Projects
May 17, 2016

Some companies turn to their SAP ERP integrators for help with their BPC implementation. They assume that their SAP integrators have expertise in all SAP modules.  It is important to realize that BPC is a separate product that requires unique expertise.

When shopping for consultants to help support your BPC  implementation, be sure to ask specifically about their BPC, accounting and finance experience, not just their BW or ECC implementation experience.  The potential consultants should also provide references that are specific to their BPC work.

Asking for background and references specific to BPC can help you find quality, experienced BPC consultants, that will help you get the implementation right the first time.

Jerry Argabrite, VP of CONSULTING | SANDPOINT CONSULTING

SAP PARTNER ACCREDITATION
SandPoint Consulting, Inc. Achieves SAP Accreditation for Partner Quality Program
August 26, 2015

Quality Drives Customer Satisfaction and Implementation  Success for SAP Partner

BLOOMFIELD HILLS, MI  U.S.A. – August 26, 2015 — SandPoint Consulting, Inc., an SAP silver partner, today announced it has received accreditation for a global partner quality program by SAP SE (NYSE: SAP).The certificate was awarded by the SAP® Partner Service Delivery organization for SandPoint Consulting’s demonstration of clear quality standards and processes and in recognition of quality, risk and project management framework improvements in alignment with quality principles from SAP.

SandPoint Consulting is closely aligned to the key principles of quality that SAP believes to be fundamental to the success of every implementation, designed to deliver high-quality software and support while providing the right processes, tools and services to drive successful projects and delivery.

Businesses today are continually challenged to manage risk in increasingly complex projects. As a certified member of the partner quality program, SandPoint Consulting will be able to help SAP customers avoid escalations, maintain profits, reduce profit dilution and improve successful delivery through the program lifecycle. In addition, the program offers a quality approach for sales processes and delivery methodologies through access to enhanced SAP channel quality templates and processes. With a distinct focus on quality deliverables, the accreditation also helps partners improve the success of bids by providing a sales differentiator from other partners through quality wording and information as well as risk mitigation activities.
“This accreditation confirms our team’s dedication and expertise when it comes to SAP solutions,” said Jerry Argabrite, vice president of Consulting, SandPoint Consulting.  “It’s about solving everyday problems for our clients. By implementing this technology, we’re able to address head-on the challenges they face and provide them with solutions to help increase efficiency so they can ultimately be more successful and profitable.”

The annual partner quality plan and quarterly quality reviews form the basis for the global partner quality program by providing a way to monitor joint performance and measure success. Partners are required to submit an annual quality plan to showcase how they will improve quality in their own organization during the year. In addition, the quarterly quality review enables joint risk monitoring via open bilateral communication as well as identifying and preventing issues.

 

About SandPoint Consulting, Inc.

SandPoint Consulting Inc., an SAP partner since 2007, is an expert in implementing, training and supporting the SAP® Business Planning and Consolidation application.   Microsoft SQL Enterprise and the SAP NetWeaver® technology platform are the backbones of the business planning and consolidation (BPC) solutions that SandPoint develops. Its “best practice” development knowledge and business planning consulting services help customers accelerate their projects and time to market. SandPoint’s solutions are all implemented with customer satisfaction firmly in mind. SandPoint consultants come from accounting, finance and IT backgrounds, and they fully understand the necessity of value-added analysis, faster reporting and statutory compliance because of their extensive industry experience.  SandPoint Consulting provides extraordinary quality, efficient delivery and extensive BPC knowledge transfer. For more information, please visit http://www.sandpointc.com/.

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