Carta Implements Planful in
and Cuts 10 Hours
From its Monthly Close
Over 15,000 companies and more than 900,000 investors, law firms, and employees use Carta’s online platform to manage their investments and equity plans.
As the company entered into hyper-growth mode over the past few years, scaling its business operations turned into a strategic imperative and caused Carta’s finance team to search for a new approach to planning. They found it quickly with Planful.
Difficulty consolidating data and providing visibility or guidance to business
When Strategic Finance Manager Kevin Zell joined the finance team at Carta, the company had 300 employees on its payroll. “We had a pretty lean finance team when I came on board,” Kevin recalls. “At the time, we were just starting to build out what the traditional FP&A function looked like: doing our first annual planning cycle, putting together board reporting, and building our standard monthly and quarterly metrics reporting.”
Two and a half years later, substantial company growth increased its headcount to nearly 1,000 employees. Yet evolving its financial planning process in lockstep with tremendous growth proved challenging for the finance team.
Spreadsheets, disaggregated data sets, and a number of disparate planning tools translated into a planning process that remained cumbersome despite continuous iterations.
“As our team continued to grow and add more team members, we became painfully aware that we needed a better way to manage our new entities and business units,” Kevin explains.
Impeccable time-to-value with a 6-week implementation
The Carta team began to evaluate different planning tools in the market in 2019, and the intuitive reporting capabilities and quick time-to-value of the Planful platform jumped out at the Carta team immediately.
“We’re growing so fast that getting data and metrics in front of our executives as quickly as possible is the core job of my team,” Kevin shares. “It was clear to see how intuitive Planful’s reporting system is with its drag-and-drop functionality and custom reporting features.”
With the support of Planful partner KeenVision, Carta developed a roadmap to roll out implementation milestones on a weekly basis. They rolled out the entire platform in just six weeks. “The fast implementation period allowed us to get value quickly—something that stood out among the other tools we evaluated.”
Spreading financial IQ through the business with a dynamic planning environment
“With Planful, we’ve transitioned away from a more traditional FP&A approach to transform into a much more dynamic planning environment— we’ve extended our finance team into other areas of the business,” Kevin explains.
Carta was quick to adopt the idea of utilizing Planful to spread financial IQ to all corners of the business and was able to lead proactive planning discussions with each business unit within weeks of implementation.
Additional benefits Carta received from the Planful Platform
Having real-time P&L and reconciling data in Planful’s cloud platform immediately cut 10 hours out of their monthly close process. “Within the first few weeks of our implementation, we were already seeing the value just by having real-time access to this data.”
Since implementing Planful, Carta executives understand how their business units are performing in real-time. Because of this, they now lean on the finance team to help them think through different scenarios. Kevin shares, “Planful has helped my team spend less time actually running reports and more time doing the fun part of our job: being advisors to the rest of the business.”
Scenario analyses that previously took up to a week to perform can now be done in a matter of minutes. Giving decision-makers across the business access to different templates in the platform empowered them to understand the impacts of their decisions—before they even make them.
Increased Business Agility
“Our business model is constantly evolving, which means we have to be ready to adapt to changes quickly,” Kevin says. “Now we can make all these changes on a much quicker basis, and interact with our data in a much more dynamic way.”
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