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OneStream vs Blackline: Who reigns supreme for Close Management?

Close management is the cornerstone of financial operations, requiring precision and efficiency to ensure accurate financial reporting. Two of the leading platforms in the close management space are OneStream and Blackline and, while both platforms offer comparable solutions, there are key differences in how your organization can reach success with each platform. Let's explore how OneStream and Blackline stack up against each other, and why OneStream is the superior choice for organizations seeking to optimize their close management processes.  


How are OneStream and Blackline similar? 

OneStream and Blackline are both prominent players in this market, albeit focusing on different aspects of financial management. Despite their different focus areas, there are several similarities to note between the platforms. 

First, both OneStream and Blackline are cloud-based solutions, offering the advantage of accessibility from anywhere with an internet connection. This cloud-based approach ensures that users can access the platforms remotely, facilitating collaboration between remote teams, minimizing hardware processing needs, and enhancing flexibility in managing financial processes. 

Additionally, both platforms prioritize process efficiency. OneStream is renowned for its unified approach to financial planning, consolidation, reporting, and analysis. Similarly, Blackline specializes in streamlining the financial close process through automation, reducing manual effort, and enhancing accuracy. Both platforms leverage automation to accelerate tasks, improve data accuracy, and minimize the risk of errors inherent in manual processes. 


Where OneStream excels: 

However, where the similarities end, OneStream shines in many areas where Blackline doesn’t stack up.  

OneStream’s Unified Platform 

OneStream's key differentiating factor is their unified platform which integrates consolidation, planning, and reporting functionality. OneStream users benefit from having their full financial management experience in one program, including increasing oversight, more effective internal controls, and reduced testing, documentation, and application maintenance. Blackline does offer an end-to-end close management experience that can manage all aspects of the close process in one system, though utilizes direct connections for data with the option of flat file uploads from other ERP and EPM solutions providers for an “almost” seamless integration. Organizations using Blackline may find themselves dealing with the limitations of separate systems and manual processes.  


Advanced Functionality with OneStream: 

OneStream offers advanced features such as automated workflows, robust reconciliation, and real-time data change notifications, empowering organizations to achieve greater efficiency and accuracy. Blackline does offer automations and standardized templates for repetitive work to minimize time investments and to help ensure data accuracy. However, OneStream’s offers this functionality coupled with the breadth of various additional functionalities and proprietary solutions to offer an enhanced user experience. 

Scalability with OneStream: 

OneStream is highly dynamic, adapting to the evolving needs of organizations as they grow and expand, whereas Blackline may struggle to accommodate complex or evolving financial requirements. OneStream’s unified platform allows for easy scalability and cost-effective growth for all operational processes from multiple groups: IT, Accounting, Finance, HR, Operations, etc. For close management specific processes, Blackline does offer an end-to-end experience that works well specifically for close management use cases. They only offer a pseudo-unified system which would require complementary applications to scale effectively and capture a complete month-end accounting closure process. 


Customization within OneStream Software + OneStream’s Marketplace 

OneStream's flexibility allows for customization to meet specific organizational needs. Additionally, OneStream offers an application Marketplace offering add-on functionality that you can install for your application. This Marketplace offers easy customization, functionality add-ons, and can help scale your operations within the OneStream application with ease. Many of these add-ons are included with your OneStream subscription, too.

Blackline offers a baseline amount of application customization with optionality like customized workflows, configurable templates, and reporting options. The tools available in Marketplace for OneStream, though, offer a greater range of customization. 

OneStream can offer capital savings and time savings for your team 

While the close management functionality of OneStream and Blackline may be similar, the tools do not offer the same benefits in terms of time utilization and cost savings. Below are just some examples from our previous engagements in converting Blackline to OneStream: 

  • OneStream offers reduced licensing costs that has saved one of our clients over $80,000 per quarter after converting from Blackline. Blackline, on the other hand, charges users for each individual external connection to their application 
  • OneStream’s automations can save thousands of working hours per year when compared to similar processes in Blackline. 
  • Rollout time for OneStream can be completed to large, geographically dispersed teams of 300+ users in a timeframe of several months less than a comparable scope Blackline rollout would require. 

While both OneStream and Blackline offer solutions for close management, OneStream offers undeniable benefits and savings for organizations seeking a comprehensive, integrated platform that streamlines processes, enhances efficiency, and reduces capital costs and manual effort. With the flexibility of its platform, OneStream empowers organizations to master close management and optimize the performance of their teams. 


The CFO Solutions Advantage  

  • We offer a proprietary implementation methodology that can reduce time to project completion by over 20% compared to other partner firms. 
  • Our consultants and architects are CPAs, CMAs, Controllers, Directors of Finance by trade with technical experience in multiple close management applications such as FloQast, Trintech, and Blackline. 
  • We offer support from project kickoff to go-live and beyond, including offering end user training, application support, and regular meetings with customer success. 
  • Your CFO Solutions team will consist of individuals with experience in project management, accounting, and IT, to understand your business needs and ensure a smooth implementation. 

Want to learn more about how converting from Blackline to OneStream can save your organization time and expense? Contact our team to schedule a no-cost consultation where we will discuss what OneStream can do for you.