There are many ways to prepare a budget. While the final result is the same, the road to get there is usually quite different. Between different accounting strategies to budgeting tools, every company around the world has a choice in how they shape their budgeting process.
What Budgeting Methodology Do You Use?
After speaking with hundreds of Microsoft Dynamics customers, we uncovered the five most commonly used budgeting methodologies and techniques:
- Top-down budgeting
- Bottom-up budgeting
- Zero-based budgeting
- Hybrid budgeting
- No budgeting methodology
Unfortunately, there is no universal budgeting tool for Microsoft Dynamics that helps manage each of these budgeting approaches. As you probably already know, the most regularly used budgeting tool is Microsoft Excel. Everyone knows how to use it and comes with your Microsoft license. But easy doesn’t mean it’s the most efficient option and using uncontrolled spreadsheets across an entire organization often leads to inconsistent manual data entry, lack of transparency, and a ton of wasted time and effort. There are some that have had to leap to a more significant, more extensive tool like corporate performance management (CPM), which can create additional challenges for small to medium businesses, because it’s meant for larger enterprises (and larger budgets).
With this in mind, we went on a journey to create a flexible budgeting solution that could give you the control you needed but not break the bank. We worked with dozens of business owners, CFOs, controllers, and department managers to understand their budgeting methodology, what processes they follow, and what they needed in a solution. The result of those conversations and brainstorms was Jet Budgets, a web-based solution that provides complete budgeting workflow and entry management from anywhere.
How Jet Budgets Works for All Budgeting Methodologies
While the budgeting process is different for every organization around the world, the purpose is still the same: to establish a plan that allocates the resources necessary to achieve your operational and financial goals for that year. To help show you how Jet Budgets can tackle all of the processes and approvals for the five budgeting methodologies listed above, we created a video series!
Each video is about 10 minutes long and goes into detail about how you can complete your fiscal planning in Jet Budgets using each approach.
A company who uses the top-down budgeting methodology needs a budgeting solution that gives the owner the ability to take the finalized budget amounts from the executive team and distribute those numbers to the various departments. In this video, you will see how a budget owner can easily assign users, set the budget allocation and deadlines, and control the structure in each section of a budget. Once the budget allocations are defined in the top-down approach, it’s up to the users to fill in numbers that add up to the specified amount for their department. In Jet Budgets, you will discover how easy it is for users to see what budget numbers they need to hit and fill out the required information in Excel or online.
As one of the most familiar budgeting approaches, the bottom-up method starts at the department level and rolls up into a master budget. Any company using this method needs a budgeting tool that simplifies data entry, enables collaboration, and provides full visibility to the users. In this video, we show you how an owner can structure a budget template to fit a specific department and how a contributor can work through their own budget numbers online and in Excel, while collaborating with other users. We also take you through a quick review and approval process.
Using the zero-based budgeting approach, a company wants to force its different departments to really evaluate their revenue and expenses. To do this, departmental managers or groups are required to build and adjust their budget based on external influences, as opposed to historical data. In this video, we use an example of how a manager can justify consulting revenue allocated based on vacation already planned for the year. You will see how easy it is to leverage Excel throughout this process, while easily tracking and collaborating inside the system.
When a company takes the hybrid approach, they need a budgeting tool with the flexibility to mold each section of their budget to the different aspects of their organization. Guidance and communication are essential to this approach, and that’s exactly what we show you in this video. You will learn how a budget owner can use the top-down method to enter the budget allocation for revenue goals and how to use the bottom-up technique to create a new training initiative section of the budget. In this video, you will discover how Jet Budgets provides clear guidance to every user and creates an open line of communication throughout the entire budgeting process.
No Budgeting Methodology
Companies that don’t have any sort of formal budgeting methodology need a budgeting tool that combines the familiarity of Excel with more structure. While a little tricky to illustrate, this video shows you how Jet Budgets can control organized chaos and help to manage the overall budgeting process. Walking you through a standard workflow, you will see how a budget owner can smoothly go into the system to track progress, check any numbers, and respond to any comments or questions.
Try Jet Budgets on for Size
As you can see, Jet Budgets provides the flexibility, visibility, and control needed to manage the budgeting process in Microsoft Dynamics in a more refined way. It is an affordable step up from Excel-based budgeting and easy to install. In fact, you can be up and running in minutes!
See for yourself how Jet Budgets can work with your current approach to budgeting.