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Case studies - forecasting, reporting and measurement

From daily grind to focussed activity: how a-count-a-bility helped reorient a business around its most profitable work

A new business owner had financial targets to be reached and substantial skills to offer the market place. The range of services varied enormously in terms of financial profitability and working environments. A forecasting model made it possible to identify how to maximise financial return. Regular review against the plan has enabled prices to be reviewed, more efficient business practices to be identified and marketing focus to be given to the right areas.

Information is only of any value if it is timely, accurate, relevant and most importantly – understood

Although the company’s books were up to date and management were receiving monthly profit and loss accounts the information was not understood and not being used to manage the business. A review of the accounts was undertaken to ensure that the existing information could be properly interpreted. Changes were then made to the way information was captured and reported so that decision making could be more relevant.

Cash in mind: a charity plans for a healthy cashflow

A charity believed it had cashflow challenges and had not previously linked income and expense planning with cashflow projections. A forecasting model was developed with operational department managers giving them responsibility for their budgets and this linked to cashflow projections. Time was spent with managers discussing alternative scenarios and how their activities impacted on the financial results. An investment policy was then established to maximise the return on funds held.