How can Automated Forecast Input Forms Drive Faster and Better Decisions?

As Budget Managers increasingly become key advisors in the Forecasting Process, they must rely on modern self-service corporate performance management (CPM) and business intelligence (BI) tools. Using interactive Forecast Input Forms like the Profit & Loss Forecast Template shown below enables them and users from the leadership teams to experience near real time forecasts and estimates that help drive faster and better decisions.

Who uses Profit & Loss Forecast Templates and What are Some Key Analytical Features?

In today’s fast-paced business environment, Budget Managers are under high pressure to supply end users like executives and department managers with timely and concise Forecasts. Companies use key features like the ones below to support their users with effective analysis that helps drive faster and better decisions:

  • Automatic annualization of the current year actuals to provide guidelines for the forecast
  • Easy comparison to the annual budget with variance analysis
  • Option to reforecast every month or a few times a year and store each version to a separate forecast

The Profit & Loss Forecast Template can be used as a key element of the Forecasting process:

Example of a Profit & Loss Forecast Input Template to Streamline the Forecasting Process

Example of a Profit & Loss Forecast Input Template to Streamline the Forecasting Process

The Profit & Loss Forecast Template is a ready-to-use Forecast Input Form from the Solver Marketplace.

A Brief Description of the Profit & Loss Forecast Template

Forecast Input Forms like the one seen in the image above are interactive and parameter driven and typically contain sections with revenues and expenses and with full security and professional formatting. One of the important features that aid the user in the analysis process is the ability to support a larger number of users with a web-based, parameter driven input form(s) accessible from any browser. Profit & Loss Forecast Templates are often used in conjunction with top-down forecast and annual budget templates, payroll and capex input forms, P&L-, balance sheet- and and cash flow reports, and budget/forecast analysis dashboards.

Data Integration to Transaction Systems

Most organizations these days want automated and streamlined planning, reporting and analysis. However, many of the benefits described earlier rely on best of breed Corporate Performance Management (CPM) tools and/or Business Intelligence (BI) capabilities as well as data marts or data warehouses that use pre-built integrations to the organization’s ERP system. Oftentimes, they also need integrations to other key data sources like CRM, subscription systems, payroll tools, etc.

Modern, cloud-based ERPs like Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance (D365 Finance), Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central (D365 BC), Sage Intacct, Acumatica, Netsuite and SAP have robust APIs which allow for dynamic integrations to CPM and BI tools that are fully automated and flexible to run on a schedule or on-demand.

Additional Resources to Aid with Research of Templates, CPM and BI Tools