MicroStrategy Inc. recetly unveiled a new version of its Business Intelligence platform designed specifically to help companies meet the growing demand for transparent financial tracking and reporting to meet new government mandates.
The new financial reporting features in Version 7.2.1 of the company’s 7i platform are designed to help public companies get better visibility into their financial records and allow their officers to certify the accuracy of federal filings, according to officials from MicroStrategy in McLean, Va.
“[C-level executives] are now much more accountable and responsible for the veracity of the numbers of their financial statements than ever before,” said Sanju Bansal, MicroStrategy vice chairman and COO. “They want transaction-level detail.”
In the wake of recent accounting scandals at Enron Corp. and WorldCom Inc., new federal legislation requires that the CEOs and CFOs of the nation’s largest public companies certify the accuracy of their financial reports.
Some existing financial systems cannot provide the financial transparency needed to meet these rules because of rudimentary reporting functionality and limited analytics, Bansal said.
This latest release of the 7i platform is designed to support seamless drill-down from summary reports to the lowest level of transaction or journal entry with analysis of the accounting treatment of all transactions. It also features automatic data mining for anomaly detection and alerts for specific users whenever an anomaly is detected.
In addition, the new features are designed to allow businesses to deploy Web-based financial reporting systems within 90-120 days rather than the usual six to 12 months, Bansal said.
The new version provides businesses with tools they need to be vigilant about their financial data, said Richard Skriletz, national managing principal for BI and data warehousing at consulting firm RCG Information Technology in Edison, N.J. With the system, companies can consolidate all financial data into a consistent information warehouse while putting many more eyes on the data, he added.