Factors to Consider when Evaluating Budgeting Software: Ease of Use (Part 1)

As with all other software out there, the most powerful budgeting applications on the market are not necessarily the easiest ones to use. Similarly, a simple application with just a few screens and menus can be mastered in a few hours, but will not have the flexibility as more complex software. In particular, you will find this to be true in the area of report writing. The more you want to customize reports and input screens to fit your company’s particular business model, the more powerful the report writer you will need and the more time you’ll need to spend learning it. While the most high-end budgeting applications offer customization of menus, labels, reports, and so on, lower end software usually has limited functionality in these areas.

All modern budgeting applications have graphical user interfaces where you can use a pointing device or  copy / paste between windows, and screens offer a variety of different fonts and colors. Online help files and context sensitive help have been a common feature to improve user friendliness. Every vendor (ISV) has its own unique screen layouts and user-related functions. The best way to get a good feel for a particular solution is to watch an in-depth demonstration or even better, to request a demo copy or a workshop where you can get some hands on experience to test ease of use of the application. The goal is to find out if power users as well end users will be comfortable with the application to the degree of where they adopt it and learn all of the features.

To help you meet your companies needs and goals, our solution BI360 Planning is being demonstrated next Thursday, May 31 @ 10 AM at our webinar:Looking to Take Away the Pain of this Year’s Budgeting Process?. BI360 Planning has a user friendly Excel-based interface, you can quickly adapt a budget model based on your existing Excel sheets; or you can completely re-engineer your process and input form layout based on your organization’s changing requirements. Join us and discover the complete value BI360 has to offer.

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