Quarterly IMPACT Forecaster®
Most businesses fail to plan for and manage the short-term peaks and valleys of cash flow every business experiences. Using a simple spreadsheet is often the best way to begin to tackle this critical task.
This needs to look at least 90 days into the future, and it needs to break the cash inflows and outflows down on a weekly basis. Don’t forget to compare the actual cash flow results from each week to your projections to improve your assumptions each week.
Organize your cash inflows by customer, if possible. Determine how long it takes to collect from each customer, on average, if your customer list isn’t too long. If you have hundreds or thousands of customers, separate them into payment classes such as credit card sales, cash, net 15, net 30, and so on. Schedule when you are expecting to receive payment for your existing receivables, and then project the collections of your sales projections based on their relative payment class or the average collection performance for each customer.
Split your cash outflows into two categories: fixed and variable. Tie the variable outflows to your projections and your fixed outflows to you contracts and past payments, including debt payments and regular distributions to owners, if there are any. Don’t forget taxes and other quarterly, annual, and irregular cash outflows.
A good place to verify you have accounted for all of your cash outflows is the bank account. Scour through each transaction in each bank account for the last few months to ensure you included each outflow in your forecast. This exercise will help you determine wish expenses are fixed and which are variable, and it will also help you pinpoint the driver for each, improving your assumptions, and, therefore, the accuracy of your forecast.
|Quarterly IMPACT Forecaster®|
|Insightful||Solves cash shortages|
|Meaningful||Removes cash flow surprises|
|Precise||Accounts for all cash inflows and outflows|
|Accessible||via SaaS technology using interactive, powerful charts and graphs so you can spend your time improving your business, not analyzing hard-to-read and even harder-to-understand reports|
|Comparitive||Actual vs. planned, prior weeks and months|
|Timely||Weekly, by the first of the following week|