Financial planning and budgeting: the finance executive’s guide

Is your forecast holding you back? Five of our most popular articles on core finance concerns.

As finance takes on more and more responsibilities within the organization, its traditional tasks need to be reconfigured to boost efficiency and effectiveness. These articles consider new ideas, tools, and techniques for financial planning, budgeting, and forecasting that just might free up your time for more strategic endeavors.

 

No time for budgets

CFOs, managers, consultants, academics: all have long pointed out the flaws in both the budgeting process — the politics involved, the sandbagging — and the final product, which becomes less relevant with each passing month. Yesterday’s budgets are too slow for today’s volatile world. Here’s how to pick up the planning pace.

 

Why some forecasting can be a waste of time

The time it takes to go through the forecast process has something to do with why corporate executives are not getting as much out of their forecasts as they might hope. Anew survey shows companies are using only about half of the potential productivity involved in their budgeting and forecasting.

Inside businesses in general, expectations for the CFO are rising. But what frequently stands in the way is the time and effort it takes to cobble together information from operational silos. Finance executives want to make reporting faster and easier so they can do more with less. But automation alone won’t guarantee the CFO a strategic role.

 

Let it roll

It is a staple of financial advice, regularly offered by everyone from Suze Orman to your parents: if you want to keep your finances on track, make a budget and stick to it. After all, that’s what big companies do, right? Not necessarily. Find out why more companies are abandoning budgets in favor of rolling forecasts.

 

Continuous not annual budgeting improves accuracy

For companies with fiscal years beginning in January, summer often marks the beginning of the long, inefficient and hassle-inducing ritual known as “annual budgeting.” CFOs and finance teams know this ritual all too well. Planning corporate budgets on a monthly or quarterly basis rather than annually can help improve accuracy and efficiency in the budgeting process.

Source: CFO – By Alexander Johnson

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