4 Strategies to Improve the Effectiveness of Collaborative SEC Reporting

October 18, 2019by Team IRIS CARBON

Preparing and filing compliance reports with the SEC has always been a critical and deadline-driven activity, involving multiple departments and systems that try to beat their respective SEC filing calendar.

Teams from accounting, finance, auditing, investor relations, legal, and more need to collaborate on numerous tasks, to create 10-Q, 10-K, and other reports that need to be filed with the SEC.

Even the smallest mistake in reporting could cause serious damage to the firm’s reputation. With the right strategies, firms can even boost the effectiveness of their collaborative SEC reporting to a whole new level.

In the good old days, financial figures for SEC filings were stored in spreadsheets and multiple enterprise platforms while text-based data were stored as digital files. Information was stored in disparate locations and folders. Creating reports for the SEC was a highly manual and time-consuming process.

This is where the latest trends in technology come to the rescue. Here are a few quick tips that will help you achieve a more streamlined and confident SEC reporting process.

Use a Disclosure Management Solution

SEC reporting is a collaborative effort. It requires data from various systems, departments, and individuals.

Over the last 10 years, with advanced technology, disclosure management solutions have changed the way the compliance reporting process works. Such solutions allow companies to prepare, review and finalize their 10-Q, 10-K, press releases, and other SEC filing documents in a centralized, collaborative and efficient manner.

Do make sure to pick a disclosure management platform that is simple and easy to use with a Word-like interface to edit documents and excel spreadsheets to update numbers.

Go with a Cloud-Based Reporting Suite

Leveraging a cloud-based financial reporting system brings in multiple advantages to your team. Multiple teams can work centrally and concurrently. Everyone works on the latest version of the document at all times with full visibility and control of the documents, making version management and content management easy.

With a cloud-hosted solution, you and your team can quickly work on all types of SEC filings in an efficient manner – saving collective time and costs.

Select a System that Offers Scalability

Several SEC reporting platforms come with several constraints, such as limiting the number of contributors, which is counter-productive. You want a system that enables you to scale the number of users in your system as your needs shift and change.

Such scalability will empower everyone to provide better inputs, thus increasing transparency and making the entire process more efficient. At the same time, the software/solution should lessen your costs while making the process hassle-free.

Automated Deadline Reminders and Notifications

Late filing of SEC reports can seriously hamper your firm’s image and may also trigger costly regulatory penalties. Most investors and shareholders take it as an indicator that something is wrong. Any delay in your submission of SEC filings can erode the trust of your current and potential investors.

This is why you need an SEC reporting software that not only links you and your teams and systems but also reminds everyone of their tasks and deadlines. The software/solution should let you assign and track the progress of your employees while automatically sending reminders of upcoming deadlines.

Eliminating Difficulty in SEC Reporting

With the introduction and implementation of advanced technologies as well as innovations in real-time communication, compliance reporting has become less difficult. Compliance teams have seen their productivity and efficiency rise significantly. As new technologies come into play, compliance reporting is bound to be less dreadful and may become something accountants, auditors, investors, and shareholders look forward to.

As new technologies come into play, compliance reporting is bound to be less dreadful and may become something accountants, auditors, investors, and shareholders look forward to. There also comes the emergence of fintech, which improves and automates the delivery of financial services. With that, businesses can conveniently manage financial transactions digitally. To learn more, check out this FinancesOnline.com fintech guide.

Cloud-based SEC reporting systems provide SEC reporting teams unparalleled agility and flexibility. Being able to access and work on SEC filings and reports anytime, anywhere, and on any device takes audit control and report collaboration to a whole new level.

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