5 Dec, 2019
James Lin - Partner Success Specialist (APAC), takes a deep dive into our latest product update – Custom Exchange Rates for Multi-Currency Consolidations.
This release gives you more flexibility and control in the way that you are presenting your financial results for consolidated groups.
Transcript table of contents
- Welcome and intro
- Why custom FX rates?
- Creating a multi-currency consolidation
- Where to find custom FX rates
- How to customise FX rates
- Using Excel to customise FX rates
Welcome and intro
James Lin: 00:01
Awesome. Thanks, everybody, for your patience this morning, and apologies again for the technical issues that we've been having. So in today's webinar, we're going to be talking all about custom FX rates, it is 11 o'clock now, so we are going to get started, and thank you very much for being on time.
Just a bit of a summary on this webinar, it is about the new feature release that we have, the custom FX rates.
It's going to be great for those of you guys with multi-currency consolidated groups, being able to have a little bit more flexibility and control in the way that you are presenting those financial results.
James Lin: 00:37
Just to introduce myself first, my name is James Lin. I'm a Partner Success Specialist here at Fathom. My job is really to help you guys to get the most value out of the platform by providing educational and training content.
I also work in Support, so if you've got any questions while using the platform, if you need any help whatsoever, feel free to take down my email address. You can shoot me an email and I'll be happy to help.
James Lin: 01:04
Today's webinar, a few housekeeping points before we get started. We're planning to run for about 30 minutes in length total.
It's not going to be a super lengthy webinar. The bulk of today's webinar is just going to be a demonstration of this new feature, where you can find it, how to use it, and how to set it up for your multi-currency consolidated groups.
I'm happy to spend about five or 10 minutes at the end of the session as well to answer any questions that you guys might have, so feel free to shoot those questions through. We can go through those questions, anything at all related to FX rates. If you want to know what's coming next or how to achieve certain things that I might've missed out on, then shoot those questions through.
Finally, the webinar is going to be recorded as well. If you do need to step out of the webinar for any reason, if you need to go for a toilet break or anything like that, feel free to do so. We're going to record the session and we'll send you a copy afterwards as well so you can go through and rewatch today's webinar.
Why custom FX rates?
James Lin: 02:07
I just wanted to spend a few minutes today to go over the context of FX rates in Fathom. Just talking about the background of FX rates and how we've treated FX rates in the past, as well as what we're looking to include going forward into the future.
Back in mid 2015, we did release the ability to perform multi-currency consolidations in Fathom. This was a huge release. Basically, you could consolidate multiple entities of different currencies into a single presentation currency for a consolidated group. It was really important for companies with international operations.
With that release, we also provided those default exchange rates that applied to each exchange rate that you're using. We were bringing that in from a third party called open exchangerates.org. This works really well, but we've received a good amount of feedback now from you guys who are looking to customise those FX rates with your own rates, as well as having more visibility around the default rates that Fathom is using.
That's basically what this feature release is all about. You're going to be able to input your own FX rates in the multi-currency consolidation.
James Lin: 03:22
This release also helps us to open the door for more advanced features down the road relating to custom FX rates. One of those features specifically is being able to specify custom rates for individual general ledger accounts. Now this isn't available right now, but it's definitely on our radar going forward.
This current release basically opens the door for us to allow things like that to happen. Definitely stay tuned for that really exciting times going forward. All right, so let's jump into Fathom now and I'll show you guys how to use our new custom FX rate editor feature.
Creating a multi-currency consolidation
James Lin: 04:03
Hopefully you guys can see my screen coming through and I believe most of you should be familiar with this screen. It's the My Company screen in Fathom. This is the first screen that you'll come across. Basically, we've got a list of all of our companies that we've imported from our source accounting system. Now in order for me to access the custom FX editor, I'll need to have a multi-currency consolidated group set up. You can see that currently I don't have that set up.
The way to do that is to click at the top right here. We'll click add a group. Select create a consolidated group. Now we can put a group name in. I'll call this multi-currency consolidation. You can select the companies to add to this group. Down here, we've got some details that we can specify, so I can specify the first month of the financial year.
I can also select the presentation currency.
This is quite important here.
This presentation currency is basically the currency that the entire group is going to be translated into and all of my results are going to be displayed in this presentation currency. We'll select Australian dollar. Awesome.
Where to find Custom FX rates
James Lin: 05:18
Now our consolidated group has been created. The way to access this new feature is to jump into the settings of this consolidated group.
Step two, group profile. Scrolling down about halfway down the screen, you'll see an option here, just next to presentation currency to edit exchange rates. We'll click on that. This has brought us to the FX rate editor.
If you've got Fathom open in another screen as well, definitely feel free to follow along with what I'm doing. Probably the best way to learn how to use this new feature is just to play around with it and do it together with this webinar, as well.
How to customise FX rates
James Lin: 06:02
We'll take a step back here and just have a look at what we're seeing. The first thing that you'll notice is we've got two separate tables, a table for the profit and loss and a table for the balance sheet. Now, the reason that we've got two separate tables here is because the profit and loss and balance sheet typically use a different exchange rate.
The profit and loss is using a monthly average exchange rate and the balance sheet is using a month end exchange rate. We've separated those rates out in two separate tables so you can customise those individually.
James Lin: 06:34
We can also see that for each table we've got a list of all of the currencies in my underlying companies. This list will depend on the currencies of those underlying companies. As long as those currencies are different from your presentation currency, it will show up here and allow you to customise those exchange rates.
Now, I can also see that these tables are already pre-filled with results. These are the default rates that Fathom has already provided for me and these are the rates that we've been using in the past, as well.
Previously, this wasn't really quite visible within Fathom. There wasn't a good way for you to see all of the default rates that we were applying across multiple periods, but now you can use this to view all of those default rates in a single place. And of course you can jump in and start to customise those default rates, as well.
James Lin: 07:31
Now we've got the presentation currency specified at the top here. You can also see that rates are going to convert from each currency to AUD.
Just take note of that.
All of the underlying company rates are going to be converted into the presentation currency. Currently, there's no way to reverse that direction of a translation. It's only in that single direction from underlying company into the presentation currency.
You can also hover your mouse over this tool tip here to get more information about the default exchange rates that we're using within Fathom.
James Lin: 08:10
All right, now let's start to actually use this particular feature. First off, we want to make sure that we're viewing the right financial period. Right now, you can see I'm viewing results from July, 2019 all the way to December, 2019. I can select the financial year by using the dropdown option at the top here, so I can select whichever financial year I want to see.
I can also navigate financial periods using these arrows in the left hand side and right hand side so I can skip to the previous or next six months.
James Lin: 08:44
Now, I'm going to jump in here and start to customise some of these rates so we can just go in there and start typing. I can also use the tab key to quickly switch over to the next cell, so kind of like an Excel experience, increasing that efficiency as you start customising those rates.
Now, I've made some changes here and you can already see that there are a few things that are different now. The first thing that you'll notice is that for each rate that I've customised, there is a little blue triangle that has appeared in the top right of that cell. This serves two purposes.
James Lin: 09:22
Firstly from a high level, you're able to have a look at all of your rates and see which ones immediately are default rates and which ones are custom rates. Of course you can also hover your mouse over this blue triangle and see the default rate that was previously applied to this particular time period.
In the top right here, there's a few changes, as well. You can see how many edits you've made since the last save, so six edits have been made. I can also revert, so if I need to revert or undo any of those changes, I can click on that particular button. I can also save my changes, as well, so if I'm happy with how things are looking, we can save that going forward.
James Lin: 10:06
Now, suppose I want to fix rates for certain periods, so maybe I don't want to customise rates and have a different rate every single period. All I want to do is have a single rate across all periods. We do have a way to fix rates across multiple periods.
The way to do that is by hovering your mouse over a cell, clicking the three dot icon here for more options. You can see an option here for fixed rate. This opens up a modal where I can select the periods that I want to apply the rate of one. I can fix rates for all periods here and you can see the exact range that's being applied for. Or I can fix rates for a custom period.
What I'm going to do today is just fix rates for all periods for everything that I've imported for this consolidated group. You can see now that all periods are now showing the result of one.
James Lin: 11:14
Now, perhaps I want to reset my rates to default. Maybe I've made some changes and I don't like what I've done, I've made a few mistakes, I want to go back.
Now of course I could revert those changes, but what if I've already saved changes? What happens then?
We do also provide you with options to reset your custom rates back to the default rates that Fathom provides. The way to do that is very similar. You just hover your mouse over a cell, click on the three dot icon, and select reset to default rate.
James Lin: 11:46
You can see that this cell has now reverted back to the default rate that Fathom has applied.
You can do this one by one for each cell, or if you want to do this for multiple periods at a single time to save you a bit of time and get some efficiency there, hover your mouse over the name of the currency on the left hand side here.
You can see that there's an option to reset. Click on reset. You've got that pop up modal again where you can reset rates for all periods or you can reset rates for a custom period of your choosing. We'll reset all periods here. Perfect.
And now everything has been re-set to the default rate. What we've done just now is basically how to customise your exchange rates within Fathom's interface itself.
We provide you with a way to input your own custom rates. You can fix rates across multiple periods. You can also reset those rates back to default.
Using Excel to customise FX rates
James Lin: 12:49
Now if you're doing a large amount of customisation, you want to customise rates for multiple periods as well as customising rates for multiple currencies, this might not be the most optimal workflow.
What we do instead is provide you with a way to download an import template into Excel, and then you can customise those rates in Excel and upload that back into Fathom.
It might be a little bit quicker for those of you guys who are looking to do customisation for multiple periods and multiple currencies.
We have some guidelines for use as well, which will be helpful to understand how you can import those results.
Go ahead and click on download.
James Lin: 13:39
Now, the Excel sheet will look something like this, hopefully you guys can see that coming through.
I'll zoom in a little bit.
Great. Nothing too special here.
We've got a few details at the top. We've got your consolidated group name showing as MC Consolidation. We've got the currency, which is the presentation currency of the group.
Then we have those two tables.
We've got the profit and loss with monthly average rates, and we've got the balance sheet with month end rates with all of your currencies listed out. All you need to do is jump in there, start typing your custom rates, and then upload that back into Fathom.
James Lin: 14:22
You'll notice as well that a little bit of a difference with the Fathom interface is that the cells here are empty.
We basically treat empty cells as the default rates.
If you haven't made any changes to the Fathom interface, when you download that import template, all of these cells will be blank here. So if you do need to make any changes, just type those into the cells and then upload that back into Fathom. Let's do that together here today.
James Lin: 14:57
Now, just take note that we can only recognise numbers, numerical results. If you put in text or any special characters, then those are considered invalid results and they won't be imported with the upload.
So I'll put those in right now so you can see what that looks like upon upload. We can go ahead and save that. Well pop back into Fathom and upload that Excel file with those changes.
James Lin: 15:36
All right, so every time you upload an Excel document, we'll provide basically a modal, which is letting you know if there's any errors that have been found, any issues, or anything that you need to troubleshoot in your Excel upload.
You can see here I've got two issues found. 560 cells are empty, so the default rate will be applied. Just take note of that. If you want to use the default rate, you can just leave that cell blank and the default rate will be applied. You can also hover your mouse over this tool tip here to see the exact cells that have that particular issue.
It's also recognising that two cells contained invalid values and they're going to be excluded from the import. And I can see those exact cells. We can still continue with that upload. You can see that the Fathom interface is now updated with those changes that I made to the Excel sheet.
James Lin: 16:33
That really sums up the way to customise your FX rates within Fathom. This is the FX editor. You've got the ability to customise that all within the interface itself or you can go ahead and download the Excel template and then upload any changes that you've made in the Excel sheet. Awesome.
James Lin: 16:55
We'll switch back to the slides. I'm going to jump into the Q&A now. I hope that's been really informative for you guys. If I did miss anything or you've got any kind of questions that you want to ask about this particular feature, then please send them through now using the Q&A feature in Fathom. Myself and my colleague James will be happy to spend about five minutes or so just answering any of those questions that you might have.
James Lin: 17:23
We've got a question coming in from Deirdre, "If you hover over a cell, can you tell if it is the default rate or the custom rate?"
Absolutely. You can. You don't even need to hover your mouse over the cell, you can just tell from looking at a glance. So if you can see here, we've got our Fathom interface coming through. You can immediately tell from a glance which cells are and which cells are customised, because there's that little blue icon in the top right here of every custom cell. All of these cells have been customised. All of these cells are using the default rate. You can hover your mouse if you want to, but even if you don't have your mouse, you'll be able to tell from a glance.
James Lin: 18:11
We've just had a question coming through, "Any additional costs for this particular feature?"
That's a great question.
There is no additional cost to whatsoever.
This is part of the Fathom product. Fathom's, our philosophy is basically to provide all of the features at no additional cost. Our pricing is based solely on the number of companies that you're importing into the product, so no additional costs. It is available to you.
Just take note that it's only available for multi-currency consolidated groups, so if you've got individual companies or if you've got consolidated groups that are all the same currency, then you don't have the ability to customise exchange rates.
James Lin: 18:52
All right. Now if no further questions guys, thanks very much for joining today. I hope that was helpful in helping you navigate the particular feature that we've got that we've just recently released and hopefully it should help you guys to get a bit more flexibility and control around the way that you're presenting those financial statements and results in your consolidated groups.
James Lin: 19:14
That really comes to the end of today's webinar. I hope that's been helpful for you.
If you've got any support questions or if you had any further questions that you wanted to ask, you can shoot those through to support@Fathomhq.com.
If you're new to Fathom, you've never tried it out before, then definitely start a free trial on our website.
You can log-in, you can input some companies, you can group them together and test out these features.
Otherwise, appreciate you guys' time and attention today. I hope that's been helpful for you and we'll see you next time. Thanks very much. Bye-bye.
Written by James Lin
James is a Partner Success Specialist at Fathom, working closely with Accountants and Bookkeepers to deliver training and educational content. James is passionate about helping businesses transform by implementing SaaS solutions to make better decisions. In his spare time, you’ll find James playing snooker, golf, or shooting hoops.