looking at a SaaS metrics dashboard

If your revenue is recurring like subscription revenue, SaaS metrics are the lifeblood of your business. These metrics are the building blocks of your profitability and growth. GAAP Financials aren't telling you the whole story so that begs the question, what else are you missing out on without a SaaS metrics dashboard to visualize your financial and operational data into actionable insights?

The importance of SaaS Metrics

Most SaaS and subscription finance teams track basic SaaS metrics such as Expansion and Contraction as a way of understanding the overall health of the finances. Intuitively, they all know that “Expansion”, as a concept, is a short-hand for a variety of subscription activities that result in the increase of a customer’s subscription value. Just to name a few, they might include add-ons, Cross-Sells, Upgrades, Upsells, Price Uplift, and Foreign Exchange gains on multicurrency subscriptions. Similarly, “Contraction” obfuscates the events that led to a decrease in a customer’s subscription value such as: Downgrades, Downsells, Debooks, Price Markdowns, and cascading Foreign Exchange losses.

To understand where and how to grow the business, you must be able to determine what’s working and what isn’t. You cannot do this with a broad-brush approach. At a minimum, you must be able to analyze your subscription activity by Customer cohort (e.g. by Acquisition Date, by Segment, by Industry Vertical) and by Product Line (e.g., Product Family) to identify actionable insights where you are experiencing successes or failures in order to determine where best to take actions to accelerate or remediate.    

Going beyond metrics to actionable insights

What you can't see in high-level SaaS reporting is the reason for trends in your customer behavior. For example, can you easily see who’s adding to their subscription, who’s downsizing their subscription, and who’s unsubscribing altogether? Can you see how much it costs you to acquire a customer, or which customers and product lines are the most and least profitable (and in which industries) so that you can adjust your sales and marketing strategies accordingly? In short, more complex metrics such as CMRR, ARR, CAC, LTV, Renewal Rates, and Churn are the language spoken by today’s SaaS organizational leaders and investors.

I can just calculate these metrics in Excel, can’t I? 

As a start-up, maybe, but even then your metrics will only scratch the surface.  As a scale-up, the immense time that your Accounting and Finance teams are spending exporting and aggregating the necessary data out of your financial system, populating spreadsheets, creating and managing formulas, correcting formula errors, validating those calculations, and showing the metrics in a presentable format is draining them and elongating their day. It’s creating manual tasks and avoidable opportunity costs instead of freeing up your teams’ time to actually add value.  

And what’s worse is, even after all that work, the metrics are already stale and far less informative than leaders require to truly analyze the business and make swift, data-driven decisions. There is no practical way to achieve "real time" access in Excel; it's all historical. 

And as you grow in customers, product lines, and organizational size, Excel becomes cumbersome, inflexible, lacking-in-granularity, and more error-prone. It also sits apart from your financial system of record and fails to meet the real-time informational needs of the business. 

What you're missing

The missing piece of the picture is what engenders confidence in the reliability of the metrics you share with your Executives and Investors alike. With Baker Tilly Digital's SaaS Intelligence, you'll have the most with subscription details across modules, interweaving and interpreting your data to give you the full picture by:

  • Automatically analyzing and categorizing every transactional event and its related recurring revenue impact at an unmatched level of detail
  • Seamlessly linking SaaS entries to the transactions that created them for easy drill-down research and auditability of the results
  • Leveraging native Sage Intacct reporting features to generate your own custom KPIs, performance cards, reports, and graphs
  • Allowing you to build your own dashboards and reports to integrate key financial reporting with the SaaS metrics delivered by SaaS Intelligence

Baker Tilly Digital's SaaS Intelligence is built on Sage Intacct’s top-rated financial management solution (and the only ERP recommended by the AICPA) to add analytical depth to your SaaS metrics using your Sage Intacct dimensions, enabling you to slice and dice data by key business perspectives such as product and customer. You and your teams will have secured access to your ERP system of record for live financial and statistical information that provides real-time data for a variety of vital metrics including logo and revenue churn, customer acquisition costs, dollar retention rates, cash burn, and much more. 

Postings include important data such as entity, customer and item for advanced cohort analysis reporting.

It’s the only product that tracks your metrics across both the Sage Intacct Contracts and Order Entry Subledgers simultaneously. So it's no problem if you have transactions flowing through Sage Intacct's Contracts module, as well as through Order Entry from an external billing system or e-commerce site. 

If you're ready to leave Excel behind and clearly see your CMRR growth drivers, use this button to find a time to talk to us about getting started.

Chris Price
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