“We’re having our quarterly management meeting next Friday. Can you kindly present an updated budget report?”
This sounds like a simple request, but if the thought of pulling the necessary facts and figures together sounds as much fun as pulling teeth, then there is help at hand.
Traditionally, budget reports are created by extracting SuperOffice sales data and making spreadsheet comparisons. This gets the job done, but it also take time. Figures change quickly and there’s no guarantee that what you present next Friday will be up to date. If a large deal closes, you want the tables and charts to reflect the real numbers.
The other way to report, is to use budgeting dashboards. Updated sales data from SuperOffice is pulled into a graph or table and compared to budget for selected time periods, people or parts of the organization. Bring your PC into the meeting, login to SuperOffice Analyze, and share the reports.
Read on to find out how it works:
- Input your budget
Input budget per person under ‘budget’. People’s names and their place in the organization structure are based on information already entered in ‘company contacts’. You do not have to repeat the process.
- Compare actual to budget for a specific period
The graph ‘sales vs. budget’ will automatically update with your figures. Sales is composed of two elements: 1) the prognosis, which is total amount in the pipeline for the period, and 2) the amount that has been registered as ‘sold’. This is normally defined as the last stage of the pipeline.
- See the trend
Some salespeople can be overly optimistic and think they will sell more than expected. When you chart percent of budget achieved over a longer period, such as several months, you can see if there is consistent under budgeting or over budgeting, and adjust your forecasting accordingly.
- Spot the outliers
Most leaders want to quickly spot when sales aren’t going according to plan and do something about it. If your reports shows a large variance between sales and budgeted, click on the graph to explore the underlying data. You can see each opportunity and help coach sales to close the deal. If the reports show you are well ahead of budget, share the excitement with your colleagues and enjoy the feeling of success a little longer.
What other tricks do you have to manage budgets? We’d love to hear from you. Get in touch.