Spreadsheets have no place in forecasting, budgeting and many other core financial routines. Spreadsheets were not designed for many of the tasks they are currently used to accomplish. In fact, I often remark in jest at workshops that many people, if they worked at NASA, would try to use Microsoft Excel for the US space program, and many would believe that it would be appropriate to do so. A spreadsheet is a great tool for creating static graphs for a report or designing and testing a reporting template. It is not and never should have been a building block for your company’s planning systems.
However, many models in planning applications have failed to deliver with seven figure sums being wasted. It is not uncommon for the forecasting model to be re-engineered within 18 months of the original. This “planning tool implementation” carnage is well documented. Whilst there was an excuse before, “it was new territory”, now this is not the case.
We must learn and apply the better practices that are becoming standards. If you want to migrate into the 21st century using a planning tool then this is the toolkit for you! This toolkit will help you build a better annual planning tool, or improve your existing model.
Case studies and application providers are listed.
This whitepaper is updated at the time of purchase by David Parmenter ensuring that it contains his latest thinking. The e-templates are emailed with the paper.
Please click here to look inside the toolkit (PDF whitepaper+e-templates)
Why you need this toolkit:
- Understand the foundation stones of better practice planning tool implementation
- Understand better practice model design and avoid the common implementation pitfalls
- To avoid the greatest mistake that many accountants make by using the excel model as a template for the new planning tool.
- To give you confidence to take control of this project ensuring that the planning tool consultants act as advisors and not project managers
- To understand why you should migrate from annual planning to quarterly rolling planning.
- Apply the checklists and templates designed to help you to implement QRF
- To help sell change to your management.
This whitepaper will answer the following questions:
- What are the benefits of a forecasting tool?
- Why Excel is not appropriate for a rolling forecast?
- What is a forecasting tool?
- What forecasting tools are available?
- What are the steps to implement a forecasting and planning tool?
- How do you sell the proposal to the senior management team?
The electronic templates include:
- Selling a planning tool (PowerPoint slide deck)
- Selling quarterly rolling forecasting to the executive team (PowerPoint slide deck)
- One page rolling quarterly forecast template
- Suggestive sales forecast template
- Rolling planning diagram
- Quarterly rolling forecast update
- Ten day annual plan timetable
- Business unit monthly report format
- One page annual plan report format
- Focus group implementation workshop agenda
- List of planning tool providers
- Planning tool supplier evaluation checklist
- Checklist to help select rolling forecasting team
- Implement quarterly forecasting checklist
- Performing a quarterly rolling forecast checklist
- One day focus group workshop checklist