The DataHero Blog

Financial Data Tells The Real Story of Your Business: DataHero+Quickbooks Online

August 28th, 2017

Zirtual, a virtual assistant startup with over 400 employees and $5.5 million in funding, closed their doors overnight because they made a financial data mistake that could have easily been avoided.

Because employees were paid every 14 days, Zirtual needed to manage cash flow for two extra pay periods in the calendar year. When they realized they didn’t have enough cash to cover the pay periods, they shut down without warning and emailed their 400 employees the disappointing news.

You can have the best business idea or the most amazing product, but if you don’t manage your company’s finances properly, you won’t survive for long. A U.S. Bank study found that 82% of businesses fail because of cash flow mismanagement.

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The reality is most people don’t have the time it takes to analyze rows of financial reports and uncover insights that will help them make good decisions. For this reason, DataHero and Quickbooks Online have integrated their services to visualize your financial data into a customizable dashboard, which will enable you to monitor financial health and stay in business.

Quickbooks provides the financial data. DataHero organizes the data with intuitive charts that tell your company’s financial story in a way that everyone on your team can understand and act upon.

DataHero Uncovers The Intelligence Hidden In QuickBooks Online

Data is worthless if you can’t make sense of it or find the trends and warning signs that lead to business intelligence.

When you have to export data into a spreadsheet or run disparate reports, it’s very difficult to uncover insights by scrolling through lists of numbers. There are simply too many figures for the human brain to process. You need your data to quickly tell a story that reveals insights, and the best way to bring large amounts of data to life is through visualization.

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DataHero’s integration with Quickbooks Online (QBO) enables you to build and visualize custom analyses. Once you’ve built your analyses, your data automatically updates so you always have fresh insights to make real-time decisions.

In the past, if you wanted to analyze your Quickbooks data, such as vendor expenses, you would run several reports like the one below.

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The reports tell you how much you’ve spent per vendor, but it is very difficult to quickly compare multiple reports or extrapolate new insights just by looking at lists of numbers. With DataHero, you can create the chart below within minutes.

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Instead of just the one report, you can combine all your vendor expense reports, put them into categories and compare them by quarter and budget.

You immediately start seeing trends and making comparisons that were not possible with the single expense report. For example you can see that rent dramatically goes down in Q2 2017. Maybe you want to dig deeper into why rent decreased and rethink how you manage your cashflow to leverage the change.

Visualization brings your data to life and helps you see patterns that give you a better idea of how your business operates over time.

When you create a set of these analyses that cover all of the critical financial levers of your business, you can track your performance on a regular basis to make smarter decisions and eliminate any catastrophic surprises.

Transform Quickbooks Into Your Business Intelligence Hub

Quickbooks has always been a gold mine of financial data for your business, but until Quickbooks Online (QBO), it was extremely difficult and time-consuming to export and analyze the data from the desktop versions.

Unlike its desktop predecessors, QBO operates completely online. You can access it from anywhere, share reports with your team, and most importantly, you can integrate with over 300 software tools like Salesforce for CRM and Sourcery for invoice management.

Because QBO contains every financial detail about your customers, vendors, products and sales, it has the potential to become your business intelligence hub. When you combine this valuable data with the data from your other cloud-based tools, you get a more holistic view of your entire business in context to your financial activities.

QBO is your data hub because without financial context, you’re not getting the real story behind your company’s performance. Let’s say some of your projects are completed early and you’re happy because less time means higher profit margins. It would seem that your business is performing well.

But when you bring in financial data from QBO and combine it with your project management data from a tool like Teamwork Projects, you can dig deeper into the profitability of each project. You might learn that the high-performing projects outsourced work to a vendor, or the employees on the project were on the highest pay scale.

Another example of business performance that must be tied to your finance data for an accurate analysis is customer acquisition costs (CAC). Your CRM data will calculate CAC based on the budget within the system, but it won’t take into account other sales and marketing expenses outside of the CRM.

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When DataHero integrates your Salesforce data with QBO, you can see your actual sales and marketing expenses that went into the acquisition beyond the set budget.

Your QBO data gives you more than a financial data update. It provides visibility into your sales, marketing and productivity data that will help you see how performance affects the bottom line.

To achieve this level of visibility into your entire business, DataHero makes it easy for you to combine and visualize all of the relevant data within QBO and your other tools to track performance, uncover insights, and make informed decisions.

Your Financial Data Puts All Other Data Into Context

Whether you are buying snacks for your team or making a large investment into marketing, every decision you make has financial consequences. Your QBO data shows you how every decision you make affects the bottom line.

When you see the results of your decisions visualized, you will begin to learn how to better manage every aspect of your business. With DataHero, your financial data tells the real story of your business, and you now have the insights to give the story a happy ending.

By Walter Chen

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