13 Pitfalls of Excel Budgeting and How Microsoft Forecaster Overcomes Them

Budgeting, planning and forecasting mean different things to individual organizations; terminologies vary, as do time horizons. These differences aside, all organizations understand the importance of peering into the future. In all cases the selection and documentation of financial goals is the cornerstone of corporate performance management. For the purpose of this paper, the term “budgeting” will refer to all constructs of financial performance models incorporating varying plans, strategies, assumptions, and events. We will assume that, at some level, budgets must enable the comparison and measurement of the actual financial operation of the business.

Studies show that a surprising 70% of all mid-sized organizations use Excel to manage their budgeting process. This paper will examine thirteen pitfalls faced by organizations using Excel for budgeting. We will also demonstrate how organizations can avoid these pitfalls by adopting Forecaster for Microsoft Dynamics ERP, a streamlined application built to overcome the problem of inefficient budgeting. Forecaster, a product that many Microsoft Dynamics ERP customers may already own, may be adopted in as little as two to three week timeframe.

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