Updated: Sep 28, 2019
The story of how the City of Deerfield Beach took control and reduced cost. The end result was a methodology that allows their Financial Reporting team to be empowered, automated, and efficient.
The following is an account of Gray CPA’s work with the city as told by Sophia Taylor, Assistant Finance Director.
“Before Gray CPA Consulting…
We produced our CAFR using just Word and Excel - which was quite a bit of a challenge and very time-consuming. When the formulas get messed up on one sheet that is connected to several – it was a whale of a time to find out what was remiss. We had to make changes at several levels manually for the fund and government-wide. Everything took way too long to compile because of all the manual work.”
Looking for a solution:
“Automation was the initial reason to look for a solution and this led us to CaseWare. In addition, there was no real documentation, no paper trail, when producing a CAFR in MS Office.
The way Gray CPA Consulting set up CaseWare allows you to see the flow from your trial balance, through your statements. It forces you to think about what you are doing.
When you use Excel or Word, you ‘subtract this’ and ‘add this’, but Gray CPA’s Reporting Module forces you to do actual accounting. We had truly got lazy over the years. We realized that we wanted to have Gray CPA Consulting setup the GASB Template Addon for our CAFR production.”
Working with Procurement:
“When we initially looked into CaseWare, we were extremely excited about the product, but we struggled to get management buy-in.
When Gray CPA Consulting initially proposed their module, they called us to ask ‘what can we do to help you, to make this work?’ They worked with us to customize a package that would make procurement happy.
We really didn’t realize how flexible the pricing and scope of their work could be. In this process, Gray CPA’s was a bigger help than I ever could have imagined. They made the procurement process really easy by working to make them happy on our behalf.”
Implementation & Methodology:
The implementation process was smooth and very educational for me. I learned about CAFR preparation in general. Their team worked with me to set up our CaseWare file, created lead sheets for our statements so that everything is clear.
We really had no idea how much help we were going to receive. I feel we have gotten so much more value that we paid for in terms of the scope of services.
There is a reason why we choose to continue to work with Gray CPA Consulting whenever we can. Their customer service is beyond amazing. I have had my moments of panic, and they were always able to guide me through them. We have excellent technical support through CaseWare International, but I would call Gray CPAs for everything because they knew me and our CAFR and would help me troubleshoot anything!”
Making the Audit Process Better:
“We have learned to use this tool, not just to produce a CAFR, but to get through our Audit. Now we can provide them with a Trial Balance with everything rolled up. The Auditors are happier. Even through the audit process, to be able to give them the schedule and lead sheets is quite helpful. We normally incur additional costs for the audit, but this time, we didn’t.”
“Even with the State Report, I took less than half the time than I would normally do because of the information I gleaned from the CaseWare solution Gray CPA’s customized for us. I don’t just use it year end, but the entire year.
Gray CPA Consulting helped us to master our major accounting issues. The biggest value was getting control of our Government-Wide Statement Preparation. In addition, we can now easily prepare and balance our Cash Flows. Overall, their team has given us the tools and the processes to have better flow and less prep time.”
Management & Purchasing Satisfaction:
“Management has been very satisfied. There has been no push back and no need to re-evaluate. They know we have a system that works. Gray CPA Consulting and CaseWare will be part of the City of Deerfield Beach for a long time.”
Sophia would like to thank the following people for Deerfield’s Success:
CFO, Hugh Dunkley, for getting caught in the vision, believing in this “pretty nifty” idea and helping to get the project going.
the whole team at Gray CPA Consulting
Gail and Jordan, especially!
“We just love CaseWare
and we love you guys!!”