Should your organisation choose a system the business can develop itself, or one where experts and consultants have to set everything up? The latter may sound easier and faster, but in the long run the cost will be higher – in many areas.
Here is a common scenario: your company has been striving for some time to establish efficient processes and routines for preparing better budgets, but has not quite succeeded. Then you are approached by experts offering a budgeting tool that their consultants can easily set up – to make effective budgeting work simple and straightforward..
It all sounds tempting, the consultants move in, and a few months later, the system is up and running. It prepares accurate budgets, but then something changes at your company: you launch two new products, close down a business area, suddenly have to report in a new currency. The budgeting needs to be adjusted for this, but how? You guessed it – time to call the consultants in. Then when the business reorganises, you call the consultants again.
Before you know it, your receptionist is on first-name terms with the consultants, and what seemed an easy solution to an annoying problem has become an expensive millstone.
Another potential problem with this way of “buying your way out of the problem” is that managers who prepare the budget can lose ownership of it. External experts may know a lot about budgeting, but at the end of the day no one knows the company’s business better than you.
Employees who struggle to master new IT tools are often happy to let the experts come in and “get the ball rolling”. But while these employees may save time by not learning new skills, their lack of understanding of the underlying processes represents a real cost to the company.
Costs time and money
External consultants cost money – sometimes a lot of money. What’s more, you can never be sure that they will be available at short notice (and the shorter the notice and the greater the urgency, the more expensive they tend to be). These are factors you need to take into account when comparing different budgeting and forecasting tools.
When you know that even small changes will require a consultant to make adjustments, quite often you will either wait to implement measures, or you will take the measures anyway, but without updating the tool. Whatever the case, this will hold back your company’s development, completely unnecessarily.
There is an alternative!
Effectplan can also supply consultants to set up the tool to suit your business, but customers can also do this themselves – and many do. It helps that Effectplan is a tool that requires zero programming – you can simply “drag & drop” to set up templates yourself, and adapt them to your evolving organisation.
This is just one of many things that makes Effectplan stand out from the competition. If you are wondering how the solution works in practice, several of Effectplan’s customers will be happy to talk to you about the benefits of learning how to use our tool.