A rolling forecast has YTD actuals + forecast for the rest of the year. When an additional month of actuals is available, a new rolling forecast should be created. Complete these 5 steps each month to roll forward your forecast.
- Create a POR Clone of the Current Plan
- Update Actuals in the Current Plan
- Reconcile Staff
- Update Custom Data
- Update other Assumptions, Drivers and/or Manual Inputs
☑️ Step 1: Create a POR Clone of the Current Plan
Before the forecast is rolled forward, it is recommended to create a clone of the current plan and make it a POR (plan of record). These actions create a snapshot of that plan as of this point in time. This gives you the option to revert back to the previous plan (without updated actuals) and/or compare it to the new plan as needed.
- Go to Plans > Select the ∨ next to the current Active Plan to open the context menu > Select Manage Plans > Select the . . . the left of the Current Plan and select Clone
- Cloning the Current Plan will create an exact copy of that plan in the Archive section named Current Plan_1
- Rename Current Plan_1 in the Archive section to something like, "January Forecast POR"
- Select the ". . ." to the left of January Forecast POR in the Archive section and select Make PoR
- Optionally make the January Forecast POR Active again if it is still needed for reporting purposes
- From Manage Plans (Plans > Select the ∨ next to the Current Plan to open the context menu > Select Manage Plans), update the name of the current plan to something like "February Forecast"
- Update the Actuals period for the current plan to include YTD Actuals
☑️ Step 3: Reconcile Staff
Since an additional month of GL Actuals is now in the plan, the staffing roster should be updated to include any actual new hires & terms for the same period. Importing a new roster only replaces the actual staff (white rows) in plans which are not a plan of record and does not have any impact on planned named hires (blue rows). After uploading the latest roster, it should then be reconciled against the current plan accordingly.
- Import the updated roster from the Workforce section of Setup > Actuals
- Reconcile Staff from Plans > Staffing
To quickly identify what happened in the most recent month of actuals, click on the Hire Date column to sort by date
- If a planned hire (blue row) was actually hired (white row with black text), they should be removed from the plan so they are not double-counted
- If a planned hire was not hired, their planned hire date should be pushed into the future.
- Add additional planned hires & terms as needed
☑️ Step 4: Update Custom Data
Custom data is often used to drive the forecast. For example, if you are forecasting Revenue using a MRR Rollforward, the Ending MRR for the new month of Actuals must be imported to properly roll forward the plan.
- Import Custom Actuals from GoogleSheet or Excel
- Update your Google Sheet or Excel import template to include the new month of actuals
- Go to Setup > Actuals and click on Import next to GoogleSheet or Excel
- Go to the Plans > Custom and review the imported data as well as any assumptions, drivers, and/or manual inputs used in your Custom Tables.
☑️ Step 5: Update other Assumptions, Drivers and/or Manual Inputs
The new rolling forecast should be reviewed to see if any additional updates should be made to assumptions, drivers &/or manual inputs. One way to quickly identify & prioritize the areas that should be looked at first is to run a report that compares the previous forecast to the same period of actuals, e.g., January Forecast vs January Actuals. For line items showing larger variances, drill into the drivers and assumptions associated with that line item to see if they should be updated.
- Go to the Assumptions area and update Assumptions as needed. For example, if a new employee benefit has been added since the previous forecast, you could change the Benefit Rate % assumption in the model.
- Go to the Drivers tab and check to make sure there are no driver errors.
- If collaborating with other users, invite them into the new Rolling Forecast to make their updates.