7pm during budget season
It’s 7 pm midweek in the middle of budget season and if you are like most finance executives you either are in or are about to enter Excel hell! After months of creating budget input templates, instructions and timelines you know that there will still be groups and individuals who have modified the template – making consolidation nearly impossible, others that refuse to follow the guidelines and the rest who ignore your timelines. You know that you will spend the vast majority of time repairing workbooks or chasing people down for missing data.
You know that this time would be better spent identifying markets or products that show real performance potential or areas for material cost savings! Sadly, you will spend most of your time reconciling and validating workbooks so that the numbers are at least correct before you see the CFO.
You know you won’t have time to do the part of your job that you truly enjoy and that adds the most value to your organization. All the while, you will be wondering if there is a better way – a way to consolidate all this information simply, effectively and cheaply so that you can get back to the business of business.
There is a better way! Fortunately, there are a number of tools available on the market today. They range from simple Excel add-ins to full-featured stand-alone systems. However, this can create a different kind of hell – one where you are still faced with all of the business complexities at your existing budget process buy compounded by inflexible MIS policies and procedures. Implemented poorly, these systems can make Excel hell look like Excel heaven!
So what is one to do?
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Sid Ghatak is the Chief Data Officer at Increase Alpha and lives at the intersection of the customer, business, and technology. Email him at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter to get insights on your world.