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Weekly Budget for P&L, Balance Sheet and Cashflow/Working Capital

I've been looking into the various software (Cloud and self hosted) providers to assist us in moving away from the Excel based forecasting tool currently in use as the multi dimensional aspect causes Excel to melt down when trying to do any scenario planning. The software must be able to handle a weekly input and therefore output so we can forecast working capital on a weekly basis - it must also be sophisticated enough to enable us to factor in intake by supplier stream, supplier terms and therefore accurately time creditor payments. It should also be able to handle a rolling forecast and a 5 year plan and have the facility to carry out top down and bottom up overlays It should also not cost a fortune and be relatively straightforward to maintain once the initial, fairly detailed, implementation is built and complete Or am i asking for too much?

Answers

Topic Expert
Jaime Campbell
Title: Chief Financial Officer
Company: Tier One Services, LLC
(Chief Financial Officer, Tier One Services, LLC) |

Where do your scenario needs come in - do you need to flip in a single click from one set of assumptions to another, or do you need to change the assumption for any of these factors and have your forecast update automatically?

Topic Expert
Len Green
Title: Performance Improvement Consultant and E..
Company: Haygarth Consulting LLC
LinkedIn Profile
(Performance Improvement Consultant and ERP Strategist, Haygarth Consulting LLC) |

Anon:

In short, I think you are talking about a software tool that allows you to create is a model. Some planning tools include predefined functions, templates, re-usable business rules, etc that allow you to rapidly create a model to suit your needs.

E.g. "software must be able to handle a weekly input and therefore output so we can forecast working capital on a weekly basis" - could be translated into something like:
1-need to technically support data fed from my ERP (e.g. sales orders exploded into BOM/raw material detail; raw material inventory on hand plus existing PO's and their due dates)
2-compute a raw material purchase forecast by item by defined period (e.g. week/month...)
3-apply FX rates to project financial cash flow in $ and $000s
etc, etc.

I'm using this to illustrate that it's important to start with defining your functional requirements-from high level down to detailed specs. That's what enables you to prioritize which functional features matter (and which don't) in making a decision.

Planning software differs from ERP software in that they are essentially models that rely on you to define model rules etc, while ERP software process actual transactions in a repetitive, constrained environment.

Hope that helps
Len

Anonymous
(Business Analyst) |

Jaime - the scenario planning refers to what-if scenarios and the resultant effect on working capital. ie if sales are 15% lower between weeks 15-25 what is the impact? What would happen if margin rate was also down by x%pts in those weeks too? We would like to adjust our assumptions (eg phasing, margin rate, sales, payroll etc) and see this flow through to stock intake and working capital

Len - the functional requirements have been prepared in relative detail for how far into the project we are. We already have ERP software which contains a full GL that we use to report from each month. This will spit out the detail we require as inputs into the Budgeting/Planning software.

We have spoken to software providers such as Adaptive Planning and Host Analytics however they do not allow for Budgeting at a weekly level which, as a retailer, is a fundamental requirement.

Topic Expert
Len Green
Title: Performance Improvement Consultant and E..
Company: Haygarth Consulting LLC
LinkedIn Profile
(Performance Improvement Consultant and ERP Strategist, Haygarth Consulting LLC) |

Anon-if you would like to contact me privately re the weekly level need, please do so. I spoke to a software implementer who may have something that you could evaluate. I guess there's no harm in exploring this:)
Regards
Len

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