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Closing the Books with the Power of AI: Hard Close vs. Soft Close

Closing The Books With The Power Of Ai Hard Close Vs. Soft Close

In nearly every business, closing the books is a vital monthly routine – a bit like a health check-up for the enterprise’s financial well-being. Generally speaking, there are two types of close – hard close and soft close. While they may seem similar, they serve very different purposes. Understanding these differences and how each form of close can benefit your business will save time, minimize confusion, and put better data to work for decision-makers. 

Let’s take a closer look at hard close vs. soft close.

Hard Close: The Deep Dive

For many, a hard close is much like it sounds – a financial housecleaning where every ‘i’ gets dotted and every ‘t’ crossed. This labor-intensive method is exhaustive. Every transaction is reviewed and the books are adjusted to reflect the company’s most accurate financial position at month-end. The result is a thoroughly detailed but significantly time-consuming process, often reserved for the end of the fiscal year. The move assures the company complies with accounting standards and delivers stakeholders a super-precise financial report. It’s a precision test but demands a significant investment.

Soft Close: Streamlining Financials

So, what is a soft month-end close? Soft closings, on the other hand, can be compared to that much-needed cup of morning coffee. Essential, effective, and efficient, a soft close calls for a quicker, less laborious review of the books, focusing only on the business’s most significant accounts and transactions. Unlike the deep dive that characterizes a hard close, adjustments and corrections are made more fluidly, often within days of the new month. This timely snapshot, while not nearly as detailed as the comprehensive review undergone in a hard close, provides management with the most current information, allowing for faster decision-making and continued financial oversight.

Hard vs Soft Month-End Close: Finding Balance

Efforts to create a hard close might set false deadlines and encourage employees to work longer hours to meet them. While hard closes are necessary to ensure an accurate picture of the financial state of the business, incorporating soft closes into the monthly cycle can enhance day-to-day financial oversight and operational efficiency. By adopting a thoughtful marriage of these two distinct flavors of month-end closes, businesses can maintain the financial vigilance necessary for annual reporting but keep operations humming along throughout the rest of the month.

The Right Tool Makes the Difference

Fast Month End Close

Enter Docyt AI, the AI-powered accounting platform that revolutionizes how businesses approach the hard vs soft month-end close debate. With Docyt, the labor-intensive hard close process and the dynamic soft close process are streamlined through automation and continuous reconciliation, making daily soft close a reality. This not only saves time but also improves accuracy and provides daily insights in real-time into your business’s financial standing. Docyt’s ClosingFlow feature, in particular, simplifies the month-end close, ensuring that it becomes a seamless part of your financial routine rather than a daunting task.

In today’s fast-paced business environment, where time is as valuable as accuracy, blending the thoroughness of hard closes with the efficiency of soft closes is the key to maintaining financial health and operational agility. Docyt’s innovative 360-degree approach to accounting automation offers businesses the best of both worlds, making the closing process as smooth and enjoyable as your afternoon espresso. With the right tools and strategies, closing the books becomes not just routine but a strategic advantage, enabling businesses to navigate the complexities of financial management with confidence and ease.

Contact us today to learn more about how Docyt can help you employ soft month-end closes into your financial strategy.

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