Follow-up – With or Without Business Intelligence
Do you want to start working more continuously and proactively with follow-up, but are unsure of whether or not you should implement a business intelligence (BI) system? In this article we will go through how you can work with follow-up in Planacy both with and without a BI, and what the advantages are of integrating with such an analysis system.
Planacy can seamlessly be integrated with the markets leading BI-systems and our aim is to complement these with advanced technology for budget, forecast and planning. In other words, our intention is not to compete with the BI-tools. With that said, it’s still possible to work with follow-up in Planacy without a BI tool to some extent, since the need for follow-up and analysis can differ very much from company to company. Below you’ll find some examples of how you can use Planacy based on your need.
Follow-up in Planacy
Regardless of if you have a BI-tool or not, it’s possible to set up a follow-up process in Planacy as per the example below. The image shows how a follow-up process can look per store and deviations are visualized between actuals and forecast, as well as between actuals and previous years actuals.
Follow-up Without a BI
For those who do not have a BI-system in place, this process offers a good foundation for working with follow-up. You can easily visualize deviations and also color code common deviations. It’s also possible to add an explanation to a deviation by choosing one of the pre-set choices (which you can of course set up yourself) from the drop-down menu, which simplifies an overall analysis. It’s also possible to leave a comment in text format.
The need of scenario planning is something which has increased in later years and even if you don’t have a BI-system, this is of course possible to do in Planacy. You can easily make a copy of your budget/forecast and the adjust various parameters, such as estimated prices, margins, salary revisions, currencies, etc.
Follow-up With a BI
If you have a BI-system in place you can integrate it with Planacy to get an overview similar to the one below. Just like for those who don’t have a BI-tool it’s possible to add explanations that can later be grouped together for easier analysis, and you can also leave free text comments.
The benefit of having a BI-tool here is that the explanations and comments can be read into the BI-system which enables an incredibly powerful analysis and reporting process. By grouping your explanations together, you can easily visualize these – for example in a waterfall diagram – and thus get an overview of why your actuals differs from the budget (for example). By setting up a follow-up process in Planacy and integrating it towards a BI you’ll save a lot of time both analysis and reporting (especially if you work in Excel today).
You can choose on which level of detail you’d like your budget and/or forecast, as well as your analysis. If you need to, you can also visualize comments on the lowest level (for example sales per month for a certain product) in your BI-tool. You can of course also combine different levels of detail since different processes can have different levels of detail.
With a BI you can make more advanced scenario planning in Planacy. The benefit of having a BI-system integrated is that scenarios can easily be visualized and compared to each other to get a clear overview of its effect on the overall business.
Balance Sheet & Cash Flow
Another advantage of combining Planacy with a BI-tool is that you not only get a clear budget/forecast and analysis of your P&L, but also of your balance sheet and cash flow. If you manage all of your processes in Planacy, you get a cohesive budget/forecast where every tiny adjustment in the P&L is visible in the cash flow – and if you integrate this with a BI-tool you also get an unbeatable overview of all past and future financial reports.
Why We Recommend Integrating With Business Intelligence
By integrating Planacy with a BI-system you can take your work with follow-up to the next level. When we meet customers who work, or want to work actively and continuously with follow-up an analysis – especially when they have complicated processes – we always recommend that they integrate Planacy with one of the markets leading business intelligence systems. By integrating two best-of-breed systems you get a seamless and powerful solution for both budget, forecast and planning, as well as analysis and reporting.