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Having a reliable budgeting and forecasting process is critical for making smart financial decisions and guiding your business’s growth. QuickBooks Enterprise provides powerful tools to create budgets and forecasts to help plan your finances.

In this guide, we’ll walk through how to leverage Enterprise’s budgeting and forecasting features to:

  • Build accurate departmental budgets
  • Create rolling forecasts
  • Perform what-if scenario planning
  • Track performance against your financial plans
  • Collaborate across your organization

With QuickBooks Enterprise, you can streamline budgeting and enhance financial visibility to make better financial decisions. Let’s explore how.

Budgeting Basics

Before diving into Enterprise’s budgeting tools, let’s quickly cover some budgeting basics:

  • Budgeting allows you to proactively plan your finances annually or quarterly.
  • Budgets contain revenue expectations and spending limits by department.
  • Accuracy comes from collaborating across the organization to build budgets.
  • Budget vs. actual reporting helps you adjust your financial plan.
  • Rolling forecasts help you continuously plan beyond your fixed budget.

With those tips in mind, QuickBooks makes the budgeting process easy.

Creating Your First Budget

Let’s walk through creating your first budget in Enterprise:

  1. Enable budgeting in Accountant & Taxes.
  2. Select your budget interval – fiscal year, quarterly, monthly, etc.
  3. Use historical data to build your revenue budget.
  4. Work with department heads to estimate expenses.
  5. Enter your budget targets on the Create New Budget window.
  6. Provide access to appropriate users to collaborate.
  7. Review initial drafts and adjust until budget is finalized.

With just those steps, you’ve created your first budget in Enterprise! Now let’s look at ways to enhance the process…

Streamlining Your Budget Workflows

QuickBooks Enterprise provides features to facilitate your budgeting process:

  • Import budgets – Rather than manual entry, import budgets from Excel or other systems.
  • Multiple budgets – Create budgets for different departments or scenarios.
  • Attach files – Add supporting documents like Excel projections or word documents.
  • Notes – Append freeform notes for additional context.
  • Change tracking – See edits made by each user to streamline collaborating.
  • Reminders – Configure reminders to nudge users about pending budget reviews and approvals.
  • Pre-built reports – Leverage out-of-the-box reports like Budget Overview and Budget vs. Actual.

Leveraging features like these helps transform budgeting from a painful manual chore into an efficient, collaborative process using QuickBooks Enterprise.

Forecasting for Continuous Planning

While budgets provide an annual financial blueprint, forecasts help you continuously plan ahead. Here are some tips for forecasting in Enterprise:

  • Set targets – Provide expected revenue and expense targets for the next 12 months.
  • Update frequently – Revisit forecasts monthly and adjust targets.
  • Perform what-if analysis – Create scenarios to stress test your finances.
  • Use pre-built reports – Start with the Forecast Overview and Forecast vs. Actual reports.
  • Track against budget – Compare your forecast vs. your fixed annual budget.

With both budgets and forecasts in Enterprise, you gain a short and long-term view into the financial health and growth plans for your business.

Collaborating Across Your Organization

Budgets and forecasts only work well when they incorporate input from across your organization. QuickBooks Enterprise supports financial planning collaboration through:

  • User permissions – Limit access as needed for each budget owner and stakeholder.
  • Notes and attachments – Centralized communication within budget and forecast records.
  • Audit trail – Track all changes by user on budget and forecast versions.
  • Reminders and alerts – Proactively notify via in-app or email reminders.
  • Reports and dashboards – Provide visibility into budgets and forecasts company-wide.

With Enterprise’s collaboration features, you can painlessly engage stakeholders enterprise-wide in your budgeting and forecasting process.

Plan Smarter with QuickBooks Enterprise

By leveraging QuickBooks Enterprise for your budgeting and forecasting needs, you gain data-driven financial plans along with peace of mind knowing your business is account for. Use budgets to create your annual financial blueprint and forecasts to continuously look ahead beyond the current year.

With real-time tracking against your plans, you can make smart decisions to keep your finances on track and rapidly respond when circumstances change. QuickBooks Enterprise provides the tools so you can confidently plan for the future success and growth of your business.

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