Kverneland Bil drives smoothly with smart budgeting and forecasting solutions
Kverneland Bil AS is one of Norway’s leading automotive vehicle distributors. The car dealer sells various brands, including Ford, Volvo, Mazda, Jaguar, Land Rover, Fiat, Fiat Professional, Alfa Romeo, Jeep, and MG. The company started in 1921, making it nearly as old as the modern car, and has a long and traditional history. In 2021 Kverneland Bil celebrated its centennial birthday.
Today, the Kverneland Bil group holding has around 250 employees. In 2021 Kverneland Bil expects sales of almost 7,000 cars and NOK 2.5 billion (more than USD 280 million) in turnover. The group is one of the largest car dealers and the leading seller of Ford, Mazda, and Volvo in Norway.
Kverneland Bil’s business controller, Merete Tisløv, talks about how the company uses financial planning solutions from Profitbase to make the best decisions for the dealership’s financial growth strategy.
When Tisløv started working at Kverneland Bil in the fall of 2010, she was an experienced user of the Profitbase digital program from a previous job. Plus, Kverneland Bil was already using a Profitbase budgeting and simulation system ‘SIM’ and a data warehouse from another supplier.
The solution Kverneland Bil had, using the data warehouse from another supplier at the time, required a great deal of manual work – punching numbers in Excel reports. “We had to input the numbers manually. Alternatively, Profitbase could transfer them for us,” Tisløv says.
The main challenges:
Tisløv reveals that it’s necessary to find the best technology to follow the market. In addition, there was a need for streamlining through daily reports instead of fortnightly reports to increase transparency and efficiency. The financial team needed reports that were clear and easy to read, particularly production analysis reports (these reports make it easy to plan staffing costs and other costs).
“Car importers have their own data warehouses, but these are only for Ford or Volvo and cannot be combined with our financial cube or other brands,” she says.
“Our ‘aha moment’ happened when Kverneland Bil received an offer from Profitbase to help us further develop our technological development. The solution involved, among other things: collecting data from the various sources, compilation, quality assurance, and providing a set of reports for ongoing reporting. Complete overview and insight.
In 2011, Kverneland Bil started using InFront and WebPlan from Profitbase. The team worked in parallel with reports in Excel. “Nowadays, we have just one Excel report,” says Tisløv, referring to the reduction of Excel reports after applying the Profitbase solutions. “Kverneland Bil is delighted with the Profitbase solutions. Our finance staff uses InFront for account reporting and Profitbase Planner to create budgets and forecasts.”
The company’s strategic move to follow the best technology and keep up-to-date with the market has paid off. Kverneland Bil has always had good financial management, but today the decision basis is arranged so that they spend their time on analyses and other value-creating work instead of time-consuming, often manual, data collection.
“With InFront, the solution is updated daily, and all our accounts are ‘live’ in the solution,” says Tisløv. “We started with the financial cube and project accounting, but after a while, we received company reports for both new cars, used cars, and the service market,” says Tisløv. Kverneland Bil has replaced an Access database to gain a better overview of:
“We have established user-friendly systems and have had great support from experienced consultants at Profitbase,” says Tisløv. Kverneland Bil is pleased to have a stable financial reporting system where Excel reports are a thing of the past, reducing the risk of errors (e.g., in formulas).
“We collect data from various sources and combine these in our reports. We get our data from the databases in Visma Global, Huldt, and Lillevik, the DMS systems Dracar and Tacdis, and some Excel reports. The drill-down functions are very straightforward – we can drill down to the transaction level and retrieve documents directly from the accounts,” Tisløv says.
Kverneland Bil’s accounting team does not need to deal with the manual input of data in Excel or Access databases.
What did Kverneland Bil value most with the implementation of the Profitbase solutions?
“The information reaches the management team faster and in a more proficient manner,” says Tisløv.
“Before applying the Profitbase solution, it wasn’t possible for us to manually update the production analysis daily,” Tisløv says. “Now, every user has access to the information they need, which is consistent (e.g., formulas). All our accounts are live the entire time, and departmental leaders support us with quality assurance. They follow their numbers and ask if they have any questions about transactions for each month.”
«We also use the Profitbase solution for accounting reviews once a month, and we no longer create reports in Excel. InFront is also used as a basis for reports that we provide to the board of directors. We only use Excel to analyze and retrieve data from the cube and analysis, in this case.”
Tisløv believes the support is personalized and reliable, where she can reach out to PBC Focus’s data engineer Atle Baldersheim directly. “It is important to talk to the people who know our solution best,” she says.
Kverneland Bil has had success with a faster information flow and excellent financial management. All in all, the company is pleased to be one step ahead in technology and planning. Tisløv and her colleagues can be proud of what they have achieved in working hard to streamline reporting processes and maintain the quality of their accounts and accounting tasks. “When the business grows, it is a great advantage to have an automatic way of reporting,” she says.
Tisløv recommends Profitbase and PBC because they deliver a financial system that is more secure and stable than programs such as Excel. In other words, Profitbase Planner is a quick and effective way of financial planning. “I’m in contact with expert consultants who speak Norwegian. The consultants understand the business and have had years of experience working with our solution. The Profitbase solution is flexible, can handle big data, and can be adapted to each customer,” she says.