A large interstate road transport business had borrowed significantly and was using spreadsheets for financial forecasting and actual-versus-budgeted performance assessments.
Given the industry’s nature and level of gearing, the bank closely monitored the business’ financial performance and held a number of covenants to protect their position.
Spreadsheet errors were discovered during the bank’s quarterly review that, when corrected, painted a far more challenging picture of the business’ outlook – unmanaged issues within operations had resulted in lost profits.
The bank lost faith in the business’ management and potential risk exposure, so it:
- Increased the interest rate charges
- Limited access to funding
- Imposed stricter conditions for management and reporting requirements.
We Implemented dedicated three-way forecasting software and robust budget-versus actual analysis to properly manage the business and risk. Had this inexpensive software been adopted initially, it would have averted much of the cost and damage to the business.
Spreadsheet errors are common, and a poor choice of financial modelling software allowed them to go undetected and unmanaged. This significantly affected the business’ profits, access to finance, and the cost of borrowing.
Choosing the wrong software is a foreseeable risk that should have been identified, prioritised, proactively treated and monitored earlier. Not doing so leads to a substantial impact on the business’s ability to meet its objectives.