Budgeting Options for Your Dynamics GP Experience
Any budgeting process entails multiple players coming together with transactional data, paired with research, to plan for the financial happenings in the upcoming fiscal year, specifically related to revenue, expenses, and assets, among other exchanges. We at Tidestone Solutions think it is important for Microsoft Dynamics customers to know about the several options for budgeting, forecasting, and modeling, including manual spreadsheet budgets, GP native budgeting input, Excel add-in tools, or proprietary platform software. In this article, we are going to focus on the several options you have to perform your budgeting processes using data from Dynamics GP, so you can be certain of the best method for you and your team.
There are plenty of factors to consider when searching for a budgeting solution that your team can use effectively and efficiently, but this article will lay out the most important things to consider. Even if you are the only person in your office that will be running the budgeting solution, any software investment should be business user friendly. In our experience, budgeting is never an exciting task for anyone, so the process should be as simple and accelerated as possible, particularly in regard to how easy the product is to use for professionals without an IT background. More specifically, you should be shopping for a tool that streamlines budgeting procedures with accounting and business logic built right into the formatting, and budgeting templates that you can reuse, amongst other functionalities. Considering how collaborative budgeting has to be, ownership and streamlining has to be a prominent feature.
Even if one person is assigned the task of putting together the budget, you cannot avoid the teamwork that is necessary to compile all of the budgeting data needed from different departments and divisions of the entire organization. Therefore, collaboration should be at the top of your priority list for characteristics or focuses to seek in a modern solution. Historically, in the context of budgeting, collaboration has meant lengthy e-mail conversations that overwhelm your inbox with attached spreadsheets, and then someone has to try to link all of the spreadsheet info together to make one budget, but it doesn’t have to be like that anymore. Independent software vendors are producing software that invites you to skip the emails back and forth between you and budget contributors – and manual spreadsheets on the server. Most people are concerned about security in the context of collaboration, so let’s add it to your checklist of features to consider.
Budgets tend to involve sensitive information, regarding salaries or allocated monies, so of course, security is essential. Furthermore, department supervisors do not necessarily need to know what other departments’ financials look like. However, you still have to rely on collaborators to get in and out of the organization-wide budget without compromising the sensitive information, and luckily, we have good news for you: Today’s budgeting and forecasting solutions are armed with security that allow budget managers to distribute ownership in budgeting without all-or-nothing access. This translates supervisors having input and management over the budget that they have to work with through the year. Using business user friendliness, collaboration, and security as a framework, this article will compare and contrast your budgeting options, including manual Excel budgeting, Microsoft Forecaster, Cognos, Hyperion, and Solver’s BI360.