Optimizing IFRS 16 processes at HES International using CCH Tagetik

Operating 18 terminals in 6 countries, HES International is one of Europe's largest providers of storage and transshipment services for liquid and dry bulk goods. The organization optimized the complex IFRS 16 processes by switching from Excel to CCH Tagetik’s Lease Accounting solution. This move saves the organization and its accountant a lot of time while improving the IFRS reports' quality and reliability.

“Previously, we used several large Excel files. Given the complexity of IFRS 16, these were such large files that we were unable to look more than three years ahead,” says Andrew Maarschalkerweerd, Financial Controller at HES International. Using Excel was also time-consuming and prone to errors.

Choosing CCH Tagetik’s IFRS 16 module

HES International is constantly looking for possibilities to optimize its processes, including the accounting process for IFRS 16. To optimize the IFRS processes, the international company opted for the Lease Accounting solution that CCH Tagetik offers.

A logical choice, as HES International already uses the consolidation environment of CCH Tagetik. While the consolidation environment and the IFRS 16 environment work with a different database, the tool can be accessed from the same location. A great benefit, as this limits the number of different reporting tools. In addition, HES International was enthusiastic about its experiences during previous implementations of CCH Tagetik.

Optimizing IFRS processes saves a lot of time

The previous way of working required a lot of manual work for the terminals. In addition, the use of several large Excel files for the complex IFRS 16 processes was error-prone.

“The new tool has already saved us a lot of time and increased the reliability of our reporting.”

Andrew Maarschalkerweerd, HES International

The implementation of the CCH Tagetik Lease Accounting solution is bearing fruit. The first benefits are already noticeable, such as time savings and reduced error sensitivity. Andrew: “We have achieved our ambition. We have used the [CCH Tagetik] IFRS tool for the year-end, which was also the basis for our auditor’s audit. Previously, the Excel file was difficult to check. The new tool has already saved us a lot of time and increased the reliability of our reporting.”

Many benefits of using the CCH Tagetik IFRS 16 module

The new method prevents a lot of manual work. The terminals can also easily consult uniform IFRS 16 reports, which removes the risk of multiple Excel versions.

HES International is therefore enthusiastic about the results of the new tool. Andrew: “Looking back, the decision to move from Excel to an IFRS 16 module was the right one. In the beginning, we doubted whether the switch to a system might cause a “black box”. However, as the corresponding reports are included, every contract is unambiguous and transparent, down to the smallest payments. We also use the tool as a contract register, in which we can immediately consult all new contracts as an attachment.”

Approach project team as a success factor

Started in October 2020, the ambition was to have everything ready for the annual close in December 2020. Such an ambitious deadline requires a straightforward approach with clear steps, a specific division of roles, and transparent cooperation. This approach turned out to be one of the success factors of the project.

The project team decided to work agile, with precise deadlines and both weekly and ad hoc project status meetings. This agile approach helped to ensure the progress of the project.

The benefits of this approach were:

  • Monitoring progress of the project
  • Insight into the work to be done
  • Short lines and high flexibility

The project team also created ways to accelerate progress right from the start of the project. Consider, for example, already loading the Excel data into the CCH Tagetik template, which is the most time-consuming part of the project. In this way, the team was quickly able to start testing the design and operation of the module, which is necessary to ensure correctness and completeness.

“The open communication and support during, but also after the project, has been essential for a well-directed implementation.”

Andrew Maarschalkerweerd

Intensive collaboration

One of the other success factors of the project is the intensive collaboration during the implementation phase between the teams of HES International, CCH Tagetik, Swap Support, and Finext. Andrew: “The open communication and support during, but also after the project, has been essential for a well-directed implementation. We were very positive about our experiences with Swap Support during previous CCH Tagetik implementation and change projects. Our previous collaboration gave us the confidence in the implementation of this CCH Tagetik IFRS 16 module.”

Involved until the last minute

The chosen approach and close collaboration between all parties involved are beneficial. Andrew: “The contact was pleasant, which ensured that questions on both sides were dealt with quickly. This kept the project at a steady pace. The aftercare was also well organized. Until the last moment, the CCH Tagetik and Swap Support teams were involved, and the speed of response was high.”

If you want to learn how to accelerate the financial reporting of leases with a Lease Accounting software solution, discover more details about the CCH Tagetik Lease Accounting module.

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