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Budgeting and Forecasting Software


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Intacct logo
 
For budgeting and forecasting, Intacct's web-based Financials and Accounting System offers users access to top-notch functionality from anywhere there's internet access. Offers functionality designed for accounting professionals.
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For budgeting and forecasting, Intacct's web-based Financials and Accounting System offers users access to top-notch functionality from anywhere there's internet access. Offers functionality designed for accounting professionals.
 
NetSuite logo
 
NetSuite has several financial planning modules that make budgeting easier for small and mid-sized organizations. The software supports what-if analysis, multi-version variance reporting and includes collaboration tools.
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NetSuite has several financial planning modules that make budgeting easier for small and mid-sized organizations. The software supports what-if analysis, multi-version variance reporting and includes collaboration tools.
 
Cougar Mountain DENALI logo
 
DENALI is Cougar Mountain’s robust accounting system for the budgeting and forecasting needs of growing businesses. It offers several feature add-ons, including payroll, PO management and more.
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DENALI is Cougar Mountain’s robust accounting system for the budgeting and forecasting needs of growing businesses. It offers several feature add-ons, including payroll, PO management and more.
 
Sage Live logo
 
Sage Live is a web-based and mobile ready accounting platform for small and mid-sized businesses. Key features include multi-company, multi-currency, and multi-legislation support, personalization based on user role, bank integration,... Read More
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Sage Live is a web-based and mobile ready accounting platform for small and mid-sized businesses. Key features include multi-company, multi-currency, and multi-legislation support, personalization based on user role, bank integration,... Read More
 
Multiview logo
 
With Multiview's full-featured accounting management suite, users can go beyond budgeting. Leveraging sophisticated financials, Multiview also offers a robust reporting and analytics environment with the ViewPoint tool.
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With Multiview's full-featured accounting management suite, users can go beyond budgeting. Leveraging sophisticated financials, Multiview also offers a robust reporting and analytics environment with the ViewPoint tool.

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Aplos Accounting logo
 
Aplos fund accounting is a web-based system designed specifically to serve the needs of churches and nonprofit organizations. Aplos fund accounting is available on a standalone basis or within an integrated suite with online donation... Read More
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Aplos fund accounting is a web-based system designed specifically to serve the needs of churches and nonprofit organizations. Aplos fund accounting is available on a standalone basis or within an integrated suite with online donation... Read More
 
Vena Cloud logo
 
Vena Solutions is designed to leverage accounting spreadsheets, providing in-depth reporting and analysis of financial data. Core capabilities include budgeting, forecasting, performance management, expense reporting and workflow.
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Vena Solutions is designed to leverage accounting spreadsheets, providing in-depth reporting and analysis of financial data. Core capabilities include budgeting, forecasting, performance management, expense reporting and workflow.
 
Adaptive Insights logo
 
Adaptive Insights's budgeting and forecasting software streamlines much of the basic process found in old spreadsheet-based budget programs. It reduces budgeting time and delivers complete and accurate forecasts.
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Adaptive Insights's budgeting and forecasting software streamlines much of the basic process found in old spreadsheet-based budget programs. It reduces budgeting time and delivers complete and accurate forecasts.
 
AccuFund Accounting Suite logo
 
AccuFund was created specifically for nonprofit organizations. In addition to its budgeting and forecasting capabilities, it has modules for accounts receivable, HR and payroll, grant management and more.
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AccuFund was created specifically for nonprofit organizations. In addition to its budgeting and forecasting capabilities, it has modules for accounts receivable, HR and payroll, grant management and more.
 
Financial Edge by Blackbaud logo
 
Nonprofit organizations researching accounting systems should evaluate Financial Edge NXT by Blackbaud. From a leader in NPO software, The Financial Edge can be deployed as an on-premise solution or hosted by Blackbaud.
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Nonprofit organizations researching accounting systems should evaluate Financial Edge NXT by Blackbaud. From a leader in NPO software, The Financial Edge can be deployed as an on-premise solution or hosted by Blackbaud.

Call us for a free FastStart Consultation: (844) 680-2046


 
Exact Macola logo
 
Exact Macola includes over 20 modules to assist with manufacturing, distribution and accounting, including PLM, AP/AR, MRP, MES and more. Additional EDI and e-commerce functionality is available from Exact.
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Exact Macola includes over 20 modules to assist with manufacturing, distribution and accounting, including PLM, AP/AR, MRP, MES and more. Additional EDI and e-commerce functionality is available from Exact.
 
Dynac logo
 
Dynac is a scalable on-premise Accounting and Corporate Performance Management solution that focuses on budgeting, forecasting, and financial reporting. It can be utilized across a wide variety of industries including agriculture,... Read More
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Dynac is a scalable on-premise Accounting and Corporate Performance Management solution that focuses on budgeting, forecasting, and financial reporting. It can be utilized across a wide variety of industries including agriculture,... Read More
 
Budget Maestro logo
 
Budget Maestro is easy-to-use automated budgeting and forecasting software that includes integrated cash flow reporting, and can be up and running in a matter of days.
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Budget Maestro is easy-to-use automated budgeting and forecasting software that includes integrated cash flow reporting, and can be up and running in a matter of days.
 
A3 Modeling logo
 
A3 Solutions offers a powerful solution for Budgeting and Forecasting and Financial Reporting. Suitable for companies in many verticals, it can be deployed either web-based or on-premise.
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A3 Solutions offers a powerful solution for Budgeting and Forecasting and Financial Reporting. Suitable for companies in many verticals, it can be deployed either web-based or on-premise.
 
SAP Anywhere logo
 
SAP Anywhere integrates sales, marketing, e-commerce, and inventory activities into one complete front-office system. With SAP Anywhere users can manage and track inventory, manage orders, manage the procurement process, and more.... Read More
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SAP Anywhere integrates sales, marketing, e-commerce, and inventory activities into one complete front-office system. With SAP Anywhere users can manage and track inventory, manage orders, manage the procurement process, and more.... Read More

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Abila MIP Fund Accounting logo
 
Abila MIP Fund Accounting from ProSoft Solutions is a finance management and fund accounting solution designed to serve nonprofits and government agencies. The solution can be deployed on-premise, in the cloud or be self-hosted. Abila... Read More
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Abila MIP Fund Accounting from ProSoft Solutions is a finance management and fund accounting solution designed to serve nonprofits and government agencies. The solution can be deployed on-premise, in the cloud or be self-hosted. Abila... Read More
 
Deskera logo
 
Deskera is an enterprise resource planning software formulated to run manufacturing operations. The system is suitable for companies manufacturing for a variety of industries. Textiles, automotive, distribution, metal processing, pharmaceuticals,... Read More
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Deskera is an enterprise resource planning software formulated to run manufacturing operations. The system is suitable for companies manufacturing for a variety of industries. Textiles, automotive, distribution, metal processing, pharmaceuticals,... Read More
 
Host Analytics EPM Suite logo
 
Host Analytics EPM Suite offers continuous budgeting and forecasting, as well as measurement for project outcomes to more accurately model future business scenarios.
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Host Analytics EPM Suite offers continuous budgeting and forecasting, as well as measurement for project outcomes to more accurately model future business scenarios.
 
FinancialForce Financial Management logo
 
FinancialForce Financial Management (FM) is a cloud-based system built to provide a complete financial management solution for sales and services-orientated companies of all sizes. FinancialForce FM has several inherent applications,... Read More
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FinancialForce Financial Management (FM) is a cloud-based system built to provide a complete financial management solution for sales and services-orientated companies of all sizes. FinancialForce FM has several inherent applications,... Read More
 
Microsoft Dynamics AX logo
 
Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 is an ERP system suitable for midsize to large enterprises. The solution has particular strengths in manufacturing and distribution but is also capable of serving buyers across multiple industry verticals.... Read More
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Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 is an ERP system suitable for midsize to large enterprises. The solution has particular strengths in manufacturing and distribution but is also capable of serving buyers across multiple industry verticals.... Read More
 

Buyer's Guide

by Eileen O'Loughlin,
Market Research Associate
Last Updated: May 28, 2017


Financial planning software applications utilize historical data and estimates of future conditions to track a company’s financial progress and compare it to business expectations. The long-term survival of a business depends on its ability to establish a budget and operate within its confines. With the help of business budgeting software, businesses can forecast likely future expenses, establish more precise and realistic budgets and have a greater chance of achieving ongoing profitability.

Here’s what we’ll cover:

What Is Budgeting and Forecasting Software?
What Type of Buyer Are You?
Benefits and Potential Issues
Market Trends to Understand
The Vendor Landscape

What Is Budgeting and Forecasting Software? 

Like many budgeting programs, business forecasting software reduces the opportunity for potential human error. Because budgets are formulated by the recording of business data, human error can drastically affect the budgeting process. Negligence and typos can easily destroy the validity of budget strategies. With the right system, however, automated reminders can ensure that the user knows when to input key business information for budget analysis.

Effective business budget software can also automatically import data directly from integrated accounting applications, including the general ledger, ERP system and HR system. This automated importing strengthens consistency and completeness for data analysis that is reliable and error-free. In addition, the ability to connect and interact with other programs provides consolidated data collection, as well as a variety of different ways to complete the budgeting and forecasting process.

Collaboration in budget formulation becomes much easier with the use of budgeting and forecasting solutions. When certain areas of a company’s budget are headed by different individuals, manual collaboration can be troublesome. But with business forecast systems, the budget approval process can be standardized to improve organization and communication. Hypothetical forecasting also allows for the inclusion of complex or often-forgotten factors like inflation. These scenarios improve general awareness of potential obstacles ahead, providing greater foresight in budget formation.

What Type of Buyer Are You?

Although some of the most important points of the budgeting and forecasting process are the same across industries, different organizations have different priorities and requirements in finding the right system. Here are the main categories of buyers:

Small businesses. Small and fledgling businesses may want to pay particular attention to a user-friendly interface or more intuitive presentation styles, which can produce easily understandable graphs and charts. Budgeting is a critical feature here, but often forecasting capabilities and needs are somewhat limited, due to costs and lack of historical data.

Mid-sized and growing businesses. Slightly larger and rapidly growing businesses can benefit from a system that adds forecasting features to help predict future growth and sales based on past patterns. A common mistake for growing businesses is to assume that last year’s surge will carry over into this year. However, many different factors play a part, and the ability to predict changes in those factors can prevent massive overinvestment in your company’s infrastructure.

Large corporations. Large companies with dozens or hundreds of different departments create a whole other level of complexity in the budgeting and forecasting process. They need something that can handle multiple types of expenses and multiple sources of revenue, all coming from different users in different departments. This information needs to be integrated in a seamless, intelligent way.

Benefits and Potential Issues

A strong budgeting and forecasting system improves accuracy for budgeting and long-term business development planning.

Improved accuracy. The tight deadlines and overtime hours associated with the budgeting cycle make it an error-prone process, but a single human error can have a massive impact on a company’s profitability. A good budgeting program eliminates most of the opportunities for calculation errors, increasing overall accuracy of the process.

Faster and simpler. Budgeting and forecasting software contains high-level functionality specifically dedicated to this purpose. This saves time on process creation (no need to create an Excel file), allows for data to be saved and reused year over year and makes the budgets easier to manage and amend. Overall, this can halve the amount of time spent on the budget cycle.

Report consistency. These solutions connect employees across the enterprise, ensuring that the budgets have the same readable format no matter who prepares them.

Better forecasting. Computer forecasting programs use complex algorithms that are designed to predict future expenses and sales based on past data. This makes for more accurate forecasts and long-term success.

Market Trends to Understand

Changing markets. The whole point of forecasting is to predict the unpredictable, which is to say rapidly changing markets. Since market trends in your industry are constantly changing, it’s important to select a forecasting solution that can account for these changes.

Increased vertical specialization. Over time, budgeting and forecasting software has become increasingly specialized, adding value according to unique workflow types. Systems are catering to the specific needs of the medical industry, nonprofits, construction companies, engineering firms and others. So if industry specialization is important to you, keep this in mind when evaluating systems.

Increased specialization by industry. Increasingly, consumers are demanding more industry-specific features, and vendors are listening. Products that were once “horizontal”—such as Sage MAS 90/200, QuickBooks and Microsoft Dynamics—are increasingly adding new vertical features to cater to buyers’ specific industries. Make sure to keep a lookout for features that fit your particular industry when investigating tools and solutions.

Software as a service (SaaS). SaaS lowers costs and speeds up implementation for buyers by offering Web-based software that doesn’t need to be installed on-premise. This is more cost effective for smaller buyers. It’s typically offered on a annual or monthly subscription basis, helping firms anticipate and control costs.

The Vendor Landscape

There are a number of considerations when selecting budgeting and forecasting software:

  • Is the system user-friendly: accessible charting/graphing capabilities, online user forums, troubleshooting applications?
  • Does it provide a variety of hypothetical situations for forecasting things like inflation?
  • Can the program involve multiple users for collaboration purposes (i.e., intra-software messaging, multiple users by department, automated combination or comparison of multiple budget submissions)?
  • Does the solution effectively provide reminders for adhering to deadlines?
  • To what degree is the software capable of interacting with important accounting applications or modules, such as general ledger, HR etc.?
  • Does the price range justify the features?
  • Does the program encourage and give reminders for frequent data entry to ensure precise and consistent information storage?
  • Does the software effectively analyze past business performance?

These are some of the major players in the budgeting and forecasting applications market:

Small businesses PlanGuru, Budget Maestro, Epicor
Medium-sized & growing businesses Planning Maestro, Epicor, Adaptive
Large corporations Adaptive Planning, Epicor

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