Admit it, you’ve been getting the feeling you may be outgrowing excel. Don’t feel bad. If you’re doing your budgeting and planning in Excel, you’re not alone. Would you believe roughly 90 percent of companies with 50 to 200 employees use Excel every day to budget and plan. Still, at a certain point, you start to outgrow Excel, realizing that you need to streamline your budgeting and planning processes to enable easier collaboration and more timely insights.
What are the signs you are outgrowing Excel?
You’re tired of the time drain. Downloading CSVs. Cutting and pasting and cutting and pasting. Rolling up data. Emailing files. Updating formulas and links. Building and updating forecasts and models. Managing budgets in Excel requires lots of tactical work. If you’re consumed with these activities, or worse, having to spend your nights and weekends to manage plans and budgets, an easy-to-use budgeting and planning solution can streamline the process and help you get your life back.
You’re tired of everything coming to a crashing halt when Karen goes on vacation. When you’ve got complex forecasting and what-if models and only one person in your company knows how it works, you’re exposing yourself to risk if that person moves on. What is the cost to have someone new diagnose, understand, and update the models if he leaves? You can ensure your continuity with a solution that allows you to define models that consistently operate on the data you pull in from your plans, budgets, and actuals.
You’re tired of version tracking. Changes are often made to budgets throughout the year to realign to changing business priorities and conditions. Version control issues can have significant consequences beyond just confusion. It means that key parts of the business can be operating from the wrong information, making decisions and spending money in ways that aren’t aligned to your business goals. A budgeting and planning solution provides one source of truth for everyone. You know who updated the budget and when. Everyone is bought in and aligned to the same plans, budgets, and forecasts. Plus, using Excel and email to send out spreadsheets means maintaining distribution lists and digging through email to find budgets. It makes you the go-to person for even the smallest things because department heads don’t trust that they have the right data, can’t find what they need, or need you to make an update.
You’re tired of looking for last month’s data, while everyone waits. If you do manage your financials like many companies using Excel do right now, every month you have downloaded the actuals to a CSV file and then cut and paste the data into Excel. Or maybe you are more sophisticated and have lookups that pull your data in from the CSV, but then you have to chase down the errors. Then you’ve got to roll it up. In the meantime, everyone is waiting on their reports to see what the actuals were from the last period, potentially delaying operational and strategic decisions. A budgeting and planning solution that integrates to your financial solution can update that information with a couple of clicks and provide immediate access to stakeholders – that would be a better scenario, right?
If you are ready to explore options beyond Excel, your timing is good. Sage Intacct offers a robust, easy-to-use and implement budgeting and planning solution built for growing companies. You can pull in your chart of accounts, dimensions, and actuals from Sage Intacct and get up and running in a few days. You can collaborate across your organization – easily working with department heads on budgets, getting actuals from your financials into your budgets and plans with just a few clicks – leveraging a more collaborative financial management process overall.