How can Budget Input Forms Drive Faster and Better Decisions?

As Budget Managers increasingly become key advisors in the Annual Budgeting Process, they must rely on modern self-service corporate performance management (CPM) and business intelligence (BI) tools. Using interactive Budget Input Templates like the P&L Budget Input Form shown below enables them and users from the finance and leadership teams to experience near real time budgeting that help drive faster and better decisions.

Who uses P&L Budget Input Forms 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 heads with timely and concise Budgets. Companies use key features like the ones below to support their users with effective analysis that helps drive faster and more accurate financial planning:

  • Automatic presentation of last year and current year-to-date actuals as part of input forms
  • Easy web-based budget data entry (see green input cells in example)
  • Immediate display of variances between current and last year budgets and option to add variance to current year actuals

The P&L Budget Input Form template can be used as a key element of the Annual Budgeting process:

Example of a P&L Budget Input Form to Streamline the Annual Budgeting Process

Example of a P&L Budget Input Form to Streamline the Annual Budgeting Process

The P&L Budget Input Form is a ready-to-use Budget Input Form from the Solver Marketplace.

A Brief Description of the P&L Budget Input Template

Budget Input Forms like the one seen in the image above are interactive and parameter driven and typically contain sections with historical actuals and budgets as well as an input section. One of the important features that aid the user in the budget process is the ability to perform real time budgeting with immediate use of associated budget reports and dashboards to analyze final budget. P&L Budget Input Forms 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