With Halloween and year-end upon us, it seems like a great time to think about budgeting!
If you’re anything like me, budgeting season can feel pretty spooky…like there are tricks behind every corner and a constant fear that the budgeting boogeyman will jump out and tell you all your assumptions are wrong.
Well, regardless of your level of trepidation, here are my three tips on preparing for budget season:
- Look at sales breakdowns. Obviously, you’ll review what you spent last year, what performed well, etc. But don’t forget to also look at some of the minutiae, like what services were most often purchased with Item A, was it worth the man-hours to upsell Item B, and what part of the sales cycle was most likely to close (or lose) a deal. Getting cozy with this level of detail can give you important insights into where you budget people, marketing dollars, and more.
- Do a time study. Do you know – really know – how long it takes your team to do certain key tasks? Do you know where they get bogged down in administrative details or manual processes that eat up their time? A time study is a great way to get a feel for where to allocate resources in the new year. Ask your team to track their time for a week (at least). Have them track what they do, if it’s billable and/or tied to a customer, and then catalog time allocations into buckets. Hopefully the results are more of a treat than a trick, but either way, you’ll have a clearer idea of where to gain efficiency.
- Don’t copy/paste last year. A lot of us (self included) love to start a budget by modifying what we did last budgeting cycle. While this can feel like a head start, it can also hinder creativity. Rather than pulling up that dusty Excel and swapping 2021 in for 2020, take the time to think about where you want your business to go, where you want to keep growing, and what you’re experiencing as a consumer yourself that works for you. My favorite way to start budgeting is by interviewing a few team members from different groups about their observations, challenges, and wins over the previous year. I find that building off these thoughts is a great way to spark new ideas.
However you start your budgeting, I wish you all the Snickers and none of the toothbrushes in your trick-or-treat stash. Reach out to our team to chat more about what your goals are for next year and how we can help you get there.
We believe that technology should empower users, solve everyday business challenges, and help companies grow. We build partnerships with our customers to create, develop, and deliver solutions that make their systems, processes, and people work better together. With deep technical, software, and industry expertise, our consulting teams are driven to take manufacturers to the cloud through technology that’s smarter, lighter, and easier to use.