Comprehensive strategic planning is critical to the success of any business. Strategic planning is to determine the direction in which all tactical and operational measures are aligned. Classic instruments of short- to medium-term planning are budgeted balance sheets, planned profit and loss accounts, liquidity plans and similar future-oriented calculations. These serve as a guide but must nevertheless be realistic and based on well-founded values and forecasts. In addition, planning should not just consider company-internal conditions, but also external factors. If, for example, it is foreseeable that demand for certain of the company’s products will soon rise or fall sharply, this will have an impact on business planning. Ultimately, the goal is to exploit the potential of the company in such a way as to make the best possible use of existing opportunities. That is why budgeting is also geared to corporate planning. It makes sense to use the resources where it is worthwhile. For these reasons, a high quality of planning is an important factor for your business success.
Benefits of business planning with a business intelligence tool
BI and CPM tools instead of Excel
If you use Excel or a similar spreadsheet programme to build your business plan, you are probably familiar with the issues involved: The manual effort and the error rate are high. It is also hardly possible to always plan on the basis of current and consistent data. Any necessary changes and updates require great effort. An alternative to these classic methods is planning based on a business intelligence and corporate performance management system. In a BI & CPM system, many of the entries and calculations made manually in a spreadsheet are performed automatically. They work with company-wide, uniform and consistent data that is up-to-date and often available in real-time. Even if unforeseen developments require a change in business planning, this is easily possible. Retroactive budget adjustments, for example, are can quickly be made.
Operationalisation of planning results
BI & CPM tools also support efforts to identify and track cause-and-effect chains across the enterprise. These exist not only within the company, but also in relation to the environment. Context can be identified by analysing historical data using business intelligence. On this basis, planned targets along these chains can be broken down, concretised at all company levels and converted into operational goals. With regards to corporate performance management, it is possible to assess the contribution of individual products, product divisions, and departments, in order to achieve the corporate goals. Last but not least, a good BI & CPM tool also offers very good reporting options, allowing you to quickly communicate the planned results and operational goals to your employees.
CPM-powered simulations for better decisions
Using a business intelligence and performance management system enables you to efficiently execute business planning based on a broad and consistent data base. You can define cause-and-effect relationships and use them to operationalise planning and measure goal achievement. Corporate performance management solutions also facilitate the simulation of scenarios. The support of a BI & CPM tool allows for various scenarios to be played through, helping you to see how individual decisions would affect planned results on your balance sheet or P&L statement. How would shifting a larger investment affect liquidity? How would an increase in the production of product A influence results? CPM-supported simulations can provide answers to these questions and many more.
Better planning with bdg
We can support you in the implementation of a BI & CPM tool – not just for corporate planning but for improving many controlling and management tasks. Creating a strong backbone for your business intelligence and corporate performance management system, we organise data integration into a consistent, up-to-date and broad database. We will coordinate all processes and train you and your employees to ensure you can confidently use all the new possibilities provided by your CPM & BI system. Trust in our many years of experience. With our help, your business planning will become more efficient and informative.