It’s been six years since Futrli launched Advisor at Xerocon in Sydney, and since then, the needs of accounting firms have changed. Luckily, so has the software that supports them.
Futrli Advisor is an award-winning product for a reason. It’s perfect for management reporting, board packs, KPI creation, dashboards, and longer-term strategic cash flow forecasting, planning, and modelling. Accountants demand this for their bigger or more complex small businesses. And, it’s supporting more than 100k businesses so far in gaining funding, expansion, operations, investor relations, and board reporting.
However, as cloud adoption has scaled in most firms since the launch of Advisor, the demand for this “traditional advisory” solution has altered, creating a problem for most firms. Back then, it was the more technologically savvy clients that were adopting Xero/QBO first. These clients needed this level of complex advisory and, most importantly, would pay firms for it. Firms saw the revenue opportunity, and the drive to deliver more and more advisory services has been high.
Today, the number of clients this size and with an appetite for this level of service sits around just 10-20% of a firm’s total cloud portfolio, meaning that as much as the desire to do more advisory is high, there isn’t the client base to target.
An opportunity arose for Futrli, who had already spotted it with the firm’s using Advisor - there was a tipping point where it just became untenable for firms to scale and sell beyond this segment.
For firms to support this dominant sector of their portfolio, the technology needed to evolve. It started with simple cash flow solutions, but these are just for SMEs to look at in the short term, and due to missing calculations and data, they were often inaccurate. Without a P&L or balance sheet, however, how do you build advisory value with that client?
Futrli’s product team knew that to truly enable accountants to deliver support to their smaller, non-traditional advisory clients and to generate an ROI; they had to create a product that:
• Transformed the complexity, uniqueness, and often irregularity of a small business’s data into an experience that was simple, elegant, and easy to use day-to-day.
• Created projections using every type of transaction from the P&L and Balance sheet (invoices, bills, journals, spend/receive money, e.g.) to ensure operational trends, seasonality, and even Covid-19 effects were detected automatically.
• Combined these projections with the impact of due invoices and bills to ensure the short term was also predicted for the SME accurately.
• Aggregated payment behaviours so that those due dates weren’t relied upon, but actual payment history overall transactions were calculated daily to ensure the SME’s cash flow was accurately represented.
• Calculated future VAT/ GST accurately from actual and predicted data so that they didn’t experience my experience all those years ago.
• Any predictions generated would flex and move with a business by automating all of the above and using new data to ensure rolling accuracy, with little or no effort on any user’s part. The solution would not scale within firms within this significant SME cohort if it did not do this.
• Explain each prediction so trust is established and the numbers are understood.
• Did not require any set-up, training or implementation.
Futrli Predict instantly creates a rolling 3-year prediction for any business across a 5-year data set. Combining transaction-level predictions across the P&L with all due invoices and bills and balance sheet movements produces an accurate cash flow forecast and the key operational drivers an SME needs to make informed decisions.
This is the next generation in forecasting: hybrid 5-way prediction.
And this is just the start. A recent release to Predict includes a live hot-linked spreadsheet including PAYE forecasting wizards, loan amortization, invoice discounting and even non-financial drivers. At just $19 USD (£15 GBP / $25 AUD) per month per SME user, finally, technology has landed that fits the accountants’ more generalised needs.