Workiva Signs OEM Agreement with SAP to Offer SAP Cloud Platform Integration with the Workiva Wdesk Platform

workiva sap partnership

Partnership integrates processes and data between cloud and third-party applications and on-premise solutions to deliver powerful linking, auditability and control features

AMES, Iowa – May 24, 2018Workiva (NYSE:WK), a leader in cloud-based data collaboration, reporting and compliance solutions, today announced it has signed an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) agreement with SAP (NYSE:SAP).

Through this agreement, Workiva is partnering with SAP to provide a first-party integration with the Wdesk platform using the SAP® Cloud Platform Integration service. The bundled solutions are expected to provide customers with powerful linking, auditability and control features.

“Today’s announcement demonstrates that Workiva and SAP are committed to providing customers with a rich integration experience,” said Matt Rizai, chairman and CEO of Workiva. “Through our OEM partnership, we will help customers all over the world improve the value of their business data.”

After users integrate their SAP business data directly into the Wdesk platform, they can benefit from the full capabilities of Wdesk, including synchronized data, dynamic commentary, controlled collaboration, granular permissions and clear audit trails. Wdesk enables narrative to be linked to data across documents, spreadsheets, presentations and reports.

Customers will be able to rely on the data transparency and consistency that Wdesk provides to help mitigate risk and have confidence in their data-driven decisions.

“SAP customers across every industry are looking to leverage cloud technology to improve data collaboration, reduce costs and gain greater business insights,” said Diane Fanelli, senior vice president, Platform Channels at SAP. “Our partnership with Workiva will help our customers improve data integrity and drive better business performance.”

Read full press release here.

SOX Pro Group Webinar: Everything You Always Wanted to Ask the PCAOB

SOX Pro GroupThursday, June 7
1:00-2:00 p.m. CT

This webinar is brought to you by the SOX & Internal Controls Professionals Group and our national sponsor, Workiva.

Join us for a Q&A discussion with SOX and audit practitioners and Jeanette Franzel, former PCAOB board member. The PCAOB’s findings create a ripple effect with practitioners as they work to understand and apply findings in a timely manner. During this webinar, attendees will gain a deeper understanding of the inner workings of the PCAOB, from its interactions with the SEC and FASB, timing of reports, management best practices, and 2018 areas of focus.

After attending this webinar, you will be able to:

  • Describe the relationship between the PCAOB, SEC, FASB, Big 4 and how findings affect one another
  • Identify how practitioners can respond to PCAOB findings without relying on their auditors
  • Explain how practitioner feedback impacts the PCAOB
    Outline ways management should react to inspection reports

CPE credit will be issued to those that qualify within one week of the webinar. The CPE certificates will come from training@workiva.com

Register here.

Workiva Ranks Number 12 on the 25 Best Large Workplaces in Chicago List by Great Place to Work and FORTUNE

Workiva Working in Atrium

CHICAGO – May 22, 2018Workiva (NYSE:WK), a leader in data collaboration, reporting and compliance solutions, today announces that it has been ranked #12 of the 25 Best Large Workplaces in Chicago by Great Place to Work® and FORTUNE. The ranking considered more than 11,000 employee surveys from Chicago companies.

“At Workiva, we follow a human asset management approach that puts our employees first, listens to their voices and responds to their needs,” said Matt Rizai, Chairman and CEO of Workiva. “Our culture fosters close-knit teams of people who truly care about each other and our customers.”

Great Place to Work, a research and consulting firm, evaluated more than 50 elements of team members’ experience on the job. These included employee pride in the organization’s community impact, belief that their work makes a difference and feeling their work has special meaning. Rankings are based on employees’ experiences, no matter who they are or what they do. The Best Workplaces in Chicago stand out for excelling in the nation’s competitive marketplace.

“Chicago has one of the largest metropolitan economies in the United States. It plays a significant economic role not just domestically, but globally,” said Michael Bush, CEO of Great Place to Work. “As one of our nation’s economic main staples, the city of Chicago can be proud that organizations like Workiva are building this country’s economy by creating great places to work for all.”

The Best Workplaces in Chicago is one of a series of rankings by Great Place to Work and FORTUNE based on employee feedback from Great Place to Work-Certified™ organizations. Workiva also was named one of the 2018 Best Workplaces in Technology by Great Place to Work and FORTUNE.

Read full press release here.

Why the seismic shift in ’34 Act reporting technology matters to the future of IPO deals

Seismic Shift

By Kevin Hachey, Capital Markets Regional Director
Workiva Inc. (NYSE: WK)

The year was 2010, and I was dug in pretty deep at one of the world’s largest software companies. Fresh off an enterprise team Innovator of the Year award, I had an active territory with budget, the benefits and 401k match were outstanding, and I was being groomed by my boss to assume leadership of his team, as he was moving into a new role later that year. Aside from a challenging commute, things were good. Stable. There was no reason to throw a monkey wrench into the mix — no pressing need to change anything.

Or so I thought.

Late spring that same year, I received a call from a close, trusted friend, who also doubled as a long-time colleague at a couple different companies that we had worked at together over the years. I’m paraphrasing, but the call went something like this…

HIM: Dude, I just hooked on with a pretty cool startup. Amazing culture, incredible product, just geniuses everywhere. Oh, and the founders have already taken a previous company public. They’ve got one more open patch in the northeast and I talked you up. You want it?

ME: What’s the tech?

HIM: Financial reporting platform for public companies, first of its kind. Cloud-based.

ME: Cloud. Hmm. When did they launch?

HIM: Two months ago.

ME: Market share?

HIM: Almost zero.

ME: Based where?

HIM: Iowa.

ME: IOWA?!?! Dude. Iowa?

HIM: Silicon Prairie, bro, whatever. I’m telling you, the tech is ridiculous and there’s nothing like it out there. This is the one.

ME: I’m in.

If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat. Just get on.”

-Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google

So, those were the early days of a little tech start-up based in Ames, Iowa that was originally called WebFilings. Along with 20 other new-hires for that inaugural sales team, my buddy and I set out to help disrupt a market that had seen little technological or procedural improvements in decades. It wasn’t going to be easy, but it made tons of sense, and it was right there in front of us: an enormous greenfield opportunity without any real competition who could offer what we could offer.

My friend was not speaking in hyperbole that day he called me — the tech truly was ridiculous. Our biggest challenge would simply be a complacent body of prospects who were likely of the mind that they had being doing things the same way for so long, why change now?

To that we boldly offered: CHALLENGE ACCEPTED.

Did we have any customers back then? A handful.

Had anyone heard of WebFilings? Not really.

Was it risky? Heck yes, it was risky, start-ups generally are.

But as Eric Schmidt, former CEO of Google, famously once said: “If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat. Just get on.”

That was our rocket ship moment.

By the time 2014 rolled around, we were firing on all cylinders. We had captured more than 25% of the entire public market for ’34 Act reporting, and roughly 70% of the 500 largest companies in the United States.

Make no mistake — that growth trajectory was a pretty big deal. It still is. In fact, for industry professionals who haven’t really been paying attention to this vendor market over the last decade, it is perhaps what’s most eye-opening, even to folks I’m meeting with to this day.

Most importantly, though, it’s validation of what we’re doing here at Workiva, and how even finicky accountants and executives can identify and react to a clear and present technological shift. Despite them needing to prioritize new systems and tools against a mountain of other projects; despite them making the tough leap from the comfort of legacy software and systems that they’d been using for years; and despite other vendor relationships they had established over decades of doing business — time and time again they realized process, risk, cost, and employee quality-of-life justifications worthy of making a change.

What we had done in just four years time was nothing short of stunning and, better yet, by then our unique cloud-based productivity platform, Wdesk, had expanded well beyond just 10-Q and 10-K filings. Our customers were now using Wdesk for hundreds of different use cases, from compliance to performance to regulatory reporting, and much more. Consider that, outside of companies still exclusively using native desktop software for SOX and Dodd-Frank compliance, Workiva was now the market leader for those two imperatives too. We had become a major player in the GRC space and offered a board reporting app for mobile devices with functionality never before seen in any other product that had been around for years.

We’re talking serious blue sky here.

That same year WebFilings also made a name change to what is now called Workiva, filed for an IPO, and today trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol WK.

Wow, that was quite a year.

workiva ipo

Fast-forward to 2017, and the shift to Workiva remained at a fever pitch. Market share for Wdesk usage had ballooned to more than 70% of the largest 1,000 public organizations in the United States, and also included 80% of the companies who comprise the Dow Jones Index.

For perspective, by that same year there were more public companies now using Wdesk to file their quarterly and annual reports with the SEC than 2x the number of companies who still used the two largest financial printers. Combined.

Folks, these were our two primary competitors, we had doubled up the number of their collective ’34 Act customers, and our foot was still firmly on the gas.

Globally, hundreds of thousands of users were now working in Wdesk on a daily basis, which by 2017 was also a platform with an unprecedented 96% user retention rate over a seven-year period. In software, you can’t overstate the importance of being “sticky,” and we were experiencing an entire new generation of financial reporting professionals who were adopting Wdesk as a best-practice and vowing to never go back.

To wit, the leap into the IPO arena for Workiva became a no-brainer. In fact, it was initially organic, with former and current users of Wdesk now finding themselves involved in an IPO and asking the logical, expected questions like:

“Why would we go back to Word and Excel and email when we can run an S-1 process so much more efficiently in Wdesk?”

“Why would anyone still use a financial printer when you can do all of this, and at a lower cost too?”

Um, exactly.

As we near the second half of 2018, a world-class Workiva IPO/Capital Markets team has been guiding our customers through successful IPO projects for over two years now – industry veterans laser-locked on smashing the status quo around IPO deals in the same way that we previously did with ’34 Act reporting: by providing better technology, a better process, less risk, better support, happier participants, and a better price-point.

Indeed, for an entire working group involved in any Workiva-assisted IPO — corporate users, advisors, bankers, and auditors alike — Wdesk is their rocket ship too.

So, don’t ask which seat.

Just get on.

The ride is 8+ years in the making, and gets better every day.

Contact me today for more details.