Webinar: Operationalizing Business Planning

February 21, 2024
3 min

Marco Santiago, VP of Finance & Co-founder at Finicast, and Daniel Reif, Finicast's CEO, were joined by special guest Paul Barnhurst, known as The FP&A Guy, to discuss the keys to operationalizing planning - bringing a plan to life, and keeping it alive and relevant across an organization.

Paul has over 15 years of business experience and a wealth of resources for financial planning and analysis professionals on his website, and through his podcasts, FP&A Today and Financial Modeler’s Corner. His expertise set the stage for an insightful discussion.

The webinar was a valuable resource for finance and planning professionals looking to enhance their financial planning processes and create real value for their organizations. Here's a brief recap of the key takeaways:

Building a Robust Plan

A strong financial plan should balance four critical ingredients:

  1. Collaboration: Finance professionals should act as partners to the business during the planning process, working together to create a unified vision.
  2. Scenario Management: Including various scenarios in the planning process helps organizations prepare for unexpected changes and uncertainties.
  3. Drivers: Understanding the business and employing intelligent, driver-based models to inform decision-making and planning.
  4. Buy-in: Building support and buy-in for the plan from the outset is essential for successful implementation.

“Creating a plan in isolation and rolling it out to the organization will almost certainly result in a plan that is put on the shelf. Not a plan that will drive the business forward.” according to Paul Barnhurst. Marco Santiago emphasized the need for collaboration between finance and other departments: “It cannot be finance’s number. Teams have to see it as our number.”

Operationalizing Your Plan

To make your financial plan actionable, it should be:

  • Connected: From the frontline to the boardroom.
  • Collaborative: Planning together, not in silos.
  • Agile: Model business dynamics, not static rows and columns.
  • Scalable: Future-proofing for tomorrow’s growth.
  • Measurable: Can’t improve what you don't measure.

“Operational plans and forecasts have to go beyond the generic financial statement. They have to be specialized for the unique drivers of your company and your individual teams. That requires a flexible modeling platform that can adapt to your company’s business model," explained Daniel Reif.

Watch the full webinar here:

Finicast offers a flexible and streamlined implementation process, which enables businesses to adapt their plans as conditions change while maintaining the integrity of their process, data, and dashboards. By incorporating principles such as connectivity, collaboration, agility, scalability, and measurability into planning processes, Finicast aims to help businesses drive informed decisions. To learn more about how Finicast can help you streamline your planning process, contact us today.

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