The Lob team relies on a complex corporate model comprised of 100s of drivers and inputs to accurately inform a number of financial KPIs including cash flow and gross margin, and to inform pricing strategy.
With their intricate requirements combined with the need to be agile, they constantly ran into the limitations of spreadsheets:
JS joined Lob as Head of FP&A, and saw how automation could level-up the finance team and free up time to focus on strategic initiatives. JS achieved this using Causal:
Moving from over versions for each planning cycle to now one corporate model in Causal that simply needs tweaks when changes in assumptions are made has allowed the Lob finance team to forecast on a weekly basis while having the utmost confidence in their numbers. The team can now spend 85% of their time looking forward, whereas before Causal, they spent 85% of their time looking back.
In lieu of creating a customized workbook for each stakeholder (executives, the board), in Causal, the Lob Finance team has created customized ‘views’ for each team member so that they can access the data that’s important to them ‘on demand’.
With up-to-date actuals and accurate projections at the right level of detail, each team member is now able to make better decisions without having to rely on finance to manually create a new workbook each time a request is made.
Lob is now able to effortlessly change inputs and drivers and have the outputs show a range of confidence rather than having equally distributed scenarios. Instead of communicating absolute outcomes to the executive team, Lob’s finance team approaches scenarios by saying that there is an x% chance of this outcome, resulting in better and more accurate decision making in the short and long-term.
With Causal being user friendly and intuitive, JS can leverage its capabilities whilst maintaining a lean team at scale. By cutting modelling time from weeks in spreadsheets to hours in Causal, JS is now spending his time focusing on accuracy, velocity of insights, and business partnerships.
Combining streamlined probabilistic models with personalized dashboards and views for critical stakeholders has empowered the Lob finance team to act as valuable business partners as executives aren’t only seeing the right projections at the right time, but they are more confident in the outcomes themselves.
This has put JS and the Lob finance team in a position of impact as they can truly support the executive team as they work to make better business decisions.