How Mosaic Helped Enboarder’s Finance Team Level Up from Tactical to Strategic
“Modern software like Mosaic is an important career development tool. Finance professionals want to get out of the manual work and move on to something more fun, more rewarding, more empowering. Work that will help them develop into senior finance leaders. Mosaic has definitely helped my team do that.”
VP of Finance, Enboarder
Enboarder helps organizations create better human connections, inviting engagement and building alignment along every step of the employee experience. Its Human Connection Platform cuts through the noise of daily communications and elevates the things that matter most with interactive, actionable nudges.
Elevating the Finance Team’s Impact
As Enboarder’s business started scaling, their small-but-mighty finance team needed to build a modern tech stack to keep up.
“The company was growing fast but we also needed to watch our spending. I knew that investing in the right tools would create efficiencies that would avoid the need to hire expensive new headcount,” explained Yaya Zhou, VP of Finance at Enboarder. “So, in early 2022, I set out to find a strategic finance tool to help.”
As leader of the small team, Zhou is responsible for tracking the company’s financial performance, building annual budgets and monthly forecasts, preparing monthly BvA expense reviews, and reporting local and common currency views of performance for three different legal entities — including the impact of currency translation adjustments on variances.
To get it all done effectively, Zhou knew she needed a way to up-level her team. Being stuck in manual drudgery to complete all of those tasks would prevent her team from providing the strategic decision support Enboarder needs.
Having used a handful of legacy FP&A software tools before, Zhou knew what she wanted and didn’t want in a solution to level up her team. She set her eyes on a Strategic Finance Platform to add to her tech stack and knew that Mosaic could complement NetSuite and her other existing source systems.
“I want my team to focus on value-added work, not repetitive manual work.”
Relying on Mosaic to Scale Finance
Learning from the past
Yaya knew that she couldn’t afford to manage the complexity of legacy FP&A software tools that she had used at prior companies. She needed a simpler, more modern solution to support her goals.
“With legacy tools I had used before, it was very hard to make a change in a model or a report. The infrastructure was set and done. Also the implementations were really complicated and took a long time. Some of the other solutions I looked at were Excel or Google Sheets based, and that’s exactly what I was looking to avoid. Mosaic fits really nicely in the middle, and gives me the best of all worlds when it comes to ease of use and fast implementation,” said Zhou.
Using Mosaic and NetSuite together as the two anchors of the tech stack
A direct integration with NetSuite was one of Mosaic’s most important selling points for Zhou. She sees these two tools as essential complements to each other. Each has its own specialized purpose, but Mosaic’s direct integration with NetSuite brings the unique workflow together effortlessly.
Zhou and her team use NetSuite as their accounting system of record to manage accounting transactions, GL balances, and multi-currency subsidiary consolidations. This serves as the trusted baseline for historical performance data. “At the end of the day, NetSuite is a database for your accounting data,” says Zhou. “But it’s not designed for FP&A workflows. It’s an accounting tool, not an FP&A tool. Let it be the best at what it does, and not more than that.”
Zhou uses Mosaic’s automated integration to sync accounting actuals from NetSuite with Mosaic’s reports, dashboards, and financial models to power Enboarder’s FP&A processes. While they consolidate their three entities in NetSuite, they rely on Mosaic for fully automated local and common currency reporting, which enables Yaya to quickly spot variances driven by currency translation impacts versus actual performance drivers.
One difference-maker for Zhou’s team is the way you can see and interact with your data for different reporting and analysis needs in Mosaic. ”For a SaaS business like us, we include Customer Success in our cost of goods sold instead of OPEX like most other businesses. To do that in NetSuite, we’d have to go through a lot of reconfiguration to see your true margin as a business. But in Mosaic, you can easily pick and choose your reporting view.”
And the platform’s flexible reporting tools are a big draw for Yaya.
“Mosaic provides much more of a “finance” view of performance data rather than an “accounting” view. Not all of the management team wants to see spreadsheets and tables of data. They want to see interactive charts that they can understand. Mosaic is great at that.”
Transforming finance into a trusted business partner
Mosaic gives Enboarder the deep, real-time financial insights a fast-growing startup needs without requiring an expensive FP&A team or getting the team stuck in low-value work that slows the team down and limits their impact. Now, they’re doing all of their budgeting, forecasting, BvA variance reviews, and executive board reporting directly in Mosaic in a fraction of the time.
But the real game-changer is how Mosaic has transformed the culture of financial collaboration. Yaya and her team are now empowering leaders with real-time data to make the right decisions for their teams. One example is when a department like customer success is looking for more headcount. “Well, now we can give them a dashboard that shows their margin and cost structure in real time,” said Zhou. “This way, they can self-regulate because they know exactly what metrics they need to hit from a company margin and profitability perspective.”
Zhou wants her finance team to go beyond basic reporting and help Enboarder’s department leaders understand the “why” behind the numbers. “That’s probably the most beneficial thing for us,” she said. “Instead of telling them at the end of the month, ‘this is your performance,’ you empower your leaders to make the right decisions that are right for the company. If you give them the tools, they will make the right decision.”
“The metrics and numbers are common sense for finance team members, but not everyone is necessarily thinking about things the way we do. By providing them the access to what they need to see, it helps them make the right decisions.”
Headcount Cost Savings While Developing Tomorrow’s Finance Leaders
Yaya has seen the benefits of Mosaic both in terms of hard ROI like time savings and productivity gains, but also in terms of intangibles like up-leveling the skills of her finance team so that they can advance in their careers faster.
Both types of ROI are more important than ever in 2023. Zhou said that “in a tough market environment like we’re in now with hiring freezes in place at a lot of companies, buying a software tool like Mosaic is a really good alternative to hiring a new headcount because it frees up the bandwidth of the existing finance team. It’s actually easier to justify than hiring a full time headcount.“
But Zhou also sees how Mosaic will be valuable under more favorable market conditions when headcount growth accelerates again. She said that having modern software like Mosaic is an important recruiting and career development tool. Finance professionals want to get out of the manual work and move on to something more fun, more rewarding, more empowering. Work that will help them develop into senior finance leaders. Mosaic has definitely helped my team do that.”
“The workflow automation probably saves a full time headcount right there by avoiding all that manual work. So take the annual salary of an analyst that you no longer have to hire and compare that against the subscription cost of Mosaic. It’s a no brainer.”
And what is Zhou’s guidance to other finance professionals looking to make the move to Mosaic? “If you’re using only Excel and accounting software to do everything today, then Mosaic is absolutely a need-to-have tool. Don’t wait, you’ll be glad you didn’t.”