Workiva Amplify 2022 Daily Dispatch 2: A Bold Future
There’s just one more day left of Workiva Amplify 2022 in Las Vegas—the conference of the year for finance, accounting, risk, compliance, and ESG professionals.
What you learn in Vegas doesn’t have to stay in Vegas, so let’s share some highlights from day 2 of the conference and peek ahead to day 3.
The bold future of transparency
We’re living in times when regulators and the public want more information about not only organizations’ financial health but also their environmental performance, social impacts, and governance (ESG).
“It’s more critical than ever for companies to be transparent and accountable to not just shareholders and investors but to all stakeholders: employees, customers, suppliers, partners, and communities,” Workiva Chief Operating Officer Julie Iskow said to start day 2.
That’s becoming easier with new features in the Workiva platform.
First look at what’s new in the Workiva platform
The Workiva platform powers transparency by simplifying reporting processes, automating tasks like collecting data, and helping you embed controls so you can provide stakeholders with data they can trust. With our customers’ input, our developers announced new features including:
Design-friendly enhancements, so you can add floating images and text boxes with text wrapping directly into documents
ESG Program within our full ESG reporting software solution, so you can more easily manage all things ESG
Integrated automations that “listen” for events to trigger the next steps in a workflow or the execution of a script
A glow-up of our governance, risk, and compliance solutions that got the internal auditors in the audience clapping their hands
Curious how to put these new features to work for your team? Request a demo to see more.
Pro tips from peers
Longtime Workiva and newer users shared how their teams are using the platform. Shifra Kolsky, Senior Vice President, Controller, and Chief Accounting Officer at Discover Financial Services, has been instrumental in helping Discover implement more than a half dozen Workiva solutions across risk management, financial services use cases, and reporting over the years.
“It really started with SEC reporting and trying to make things easier,” she said.
Hear from other Workiva users in financial services, the energy industry, and more Wednesday.
From the SEC’s acting chief accountant
The SEC Professionals Group welcomed Amplify attendees to watch a Q&A session with Securities and Exchange Commission Acting Chief Accountant Paul Munter virtually or in person.
Paul answered burning questions about his priorities, his previous comments on materiality, and the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and its standard-setting processes, including perspectives on the recently abandoned goodwill project and the status of the SEC’s climate disclosure proposal. (Financial reporting professionals can join the SEC Pro Group to watch a free replay.)
Following the interview, panelists discussed the topics Paul addressed and the SEC’s climate disclosure proposal. Panelist Jonathan Gregory, who is Director of External Reporting and Technical Accounting at The Hershey Company, said his organization has been reporting on ESG for years. Now, their focus is to keep pushing ESG efforts forward by bringing teams and processes together.
While we are in this “wait and see limbo,” Jonathan said, being prepared is crucial. “That needs to be the mindset if you want to be set up for success,” he said.
Another panelist said it’s tough to speculate what the final rule will be. “This is a big proposal and it’s contentious. I think the staff might have over-proposed because you can do that and always dial back,” he said. The panelist said he doesn’t think the 1% threshold rule will hold up, but that it is important to prepare regardless of what comes.
A few more key takeaways
With all the knowledge shared on day 2, it’s hard to choose just a few highlights, but here are three top takeaways:
- “Agility in today’s environment is going to be key in order for an organization to continue to be successful,” said Cheryl Levesque, Partner, CFO & Business Advisory, for FORVIS. “Building that business model so you can react quickly to change is going to be paramount.”
- Use technology to serve your talent by, for example, automating manual tasks so you can focus on higher-value strategic work, said Mike Giles, Partner, Consulting Solutions: Cyber, Risk, and Regulatory at PwC. It can often make sense to implement technology like the Workiva solution for Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) compliance earlier rather than later if you’re thinking of going public.
- The successes you’ve had with the Workiva platform can be shared with other teams and departments across your organization, said Valeriy Dokshukin, Partner at Deloitte & Touche LLP. Ask yourself, “What types of reporting use cases have I heard about this week that I am not currently doing with the Workiva platform?”
Use day 3 of Workiva Amplify to talk with Workiva team members and our partners about whether it makes sense to expand what you do with Workiva in the coming year.
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