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Measuring the ROI of Planning Software

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Budgeting and forecasting models require structure, lots of it— templates for revenue, expense, headcount and capital planning; consolidation and rollups of the detail to financial statements; user security and process controls; importing data from multiple sources; and more.

In Excel you build these structures from scratch using cell-based formulas and macros. The models take weeks to develop. They’re difficult to maintain, especially when importing actuals and rolling over time periods. They break when line managers insert rows or columns in the spreadsheet templates. And we pray that the FP&A guy or gal who built the model doesn’t quit or get promoted.

Savvy finance teams know that spreadsheets no longer do the job for budgets and forecasting. The big question is: what’s the ROI if you move from spreadsheets to a planning application? Or alternatively if you’ve already made the move, are you getting the ROI you should?

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