FirstMerit Corporation – Certification Testimonial



Terri Rogers: I learned about Certifier from our assistant controller. She was using the software for the filing for the 10-K, the financial statements, and I had been talking about a sub-certification process for section 302 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act for the past couple of years, and she let me know about Certifier and said, “Here, I think here’s a tool that will facilitate the sub-certification and be very simple to do.”

We used a basic word processing tool to document the certification questions, which would be emailed to the line of business management. They would print it out, sign it, scan it, email it back to us. Kind of labor intensive.

I was very excited about the product. When I mentioned it to our audit committee and executive management that we were going to roll that forward for quarter one, they had heard me say this on many occasions, and the audit committee chairman said, “Ok, this is going out for quarter one,” and I was able to say confidently, “Absolutely,” because of the software, what I’d seen with the product. I knew we could get it done in the same time frame.

We began setting it up, doing some test files, and within a couple of days, we had the templates set up, and we needed no training.

It’s very streamlined, it’s efficient, it’s simple for the line of business management to complete their certification. They can access the web anywhere, they don’t need to physically be in the office to complete their certification within a deadline. I can easily check the status of the certifications as opposed to going through my emails, who has emailed me, who hasn’t send the certification, and I can pull the reports simply from the web.

I think the best part of the Certifier is they’re doing a quarterly certification. They can access the web, complete the certification, and they’re done. And no questions, it’s very simple for me to use it as the administrator as well as for the certifiers to use it, and it’s on the web.

In using Certifier, we have saved so much time because a lot of the time involved is the status tracking. So, we use a generic spreadsheet to track the status, have to receive certifications back manually, we’re checking email, did someone send it and we missed it in email? With Certifier, it tracks your status right there. You go out there, you can see the status, you know who’s returned it, you know what percentage completion you have. It’s saved hours.

We started brainstorming other uses where we can use it within the company outside of just one limited use where we wanted to use it for sub-certifications. I would describe WebFilings Certifier as a simple, easy process that is beneficial both from an administrative standpoint as well as a user standpoint to ensure that you get the SOX certification and your sub-certification process done timely, very efficient, and it’s beneficial. You can provide this report not only to executive management, but also to your external auditors. And it gives a comfort over the internal controls over financial reporting, to executive management, senior management, and your audit committee.

Read More