Carlson Thought Leadership in Finance & Technology

How to Create a Rolling Forecast with Adaptive Insights

June 28, 2019 / by Lauren Strohmeier

How to Create a Rolling Forecast - 1When change happens, it creates opportunities for growth. Today’s business world is dynamic. It’s in a constant state of evolution that requires organizations to be agile. As developments arise, how can your finance team stay ahead of the curve? 

You can stay ahead by creating dynamic financial models that incorporate rolling forecasts. Through rolling forecasts, you benefit from visibility that helps you understand your business in the past, present, and future. 

Rolling forecasts give you insights on what it takes to thrive amidst the change. You are able to adapt and be prepared for what’s ahead. You can make strategic decisions that guide your business in the right direction.

Adaptive Insights, the business planning software that’s built for business agility, enables you to build effective rolling forecasts that give you insights into the future.

Here’s why rolling forecasts are an important part of your FP&A plan:

Stay Up-to-Date

Traditional forecasts are static. By the time they’re finalized, they no longer reflect the realities of your business. According to a study, 64% of annual forecasts are obsolete after 4 to 6 months. That means you’re not getting an accurate view of performance. 

Rolling forecasts paint that real-time picture, so you can see what’s happening across the board. They’re updated on a rolling basis, so you can stay up-to-date. Their results help you make future projections based on accurate actuals. 

You can be in the know on the factors driving your business forward.

Have a Continuous Planning Cycle

Traditional forecasts have gaps in information, thereby causing incomplete results. They’re also an arduous and time-consuming process.

Rolling forecasts give you the complete picture by continuously fueling your finance team with forward-thinking insights. They are pivotal to your planning by making your forecasting truly proactive.

Effectively navigating business requires foresight and a sense of direction. With rolling forecasts, you plan with your sights set in the future. You always have information that informs on which way to steer your business. You can then make decisions that help you get there.

Align Strategy with Goals

How should your organization allocate its resources? What are the top drivers of profitability? What decisions will lead to long-term growth?

Rolling forecasts combine updated actuals with adjusted expectations. With rolling forecasts, you can align strategies with goals. For desired outcomes, there are specific actions that will make them a success. Rolling forecasts help you determine how to act based on past and present conditions. 

In so doing, you can create a sound strategy that makes your goals happen. You are able to guide your organization forward with a high-level roadmap. Your planning will be fueled by your organization’s top drivers. Achieving great results begins with having a clear vision.

Identify Opportunities and Risks 

In today’s dynamic business environment, it’s important to stay nimble. Business agility keeps your organization relevant and connected to what’s happening in the world. The ability to adapt to change depends on identifying opportunities and risks.

By conducting rolling forecasts, you can round out your SWOT analysis. You will be able to identify opportunities that propel your organization to achievement. On the other hand, you will be able to identify risks that could hinder performance and create strategies that mitigate them.

When you know the factors that impact your business, you can make informed decisions that help you navigate the complexities of change. 

Perform Effective Business Analysis

What if you open a store in a new location? What if you grow your team by  ten members? What if you release a new line of products?

Making informed decisions begins with asking questions that matter to your organization. Analyzing hypothetical what-if scenarios points the way to profitability. It’s important to know what will happen after possible actions. By using this cause and effect approach to planning, you can make decisions that benefit your business.

Rolling forecasts give you the answers to these what-if scenarios.

How to Create a Rolling Forecast with Adaptive Insights

With Adaptive Insights, creating a rolling forecast is quick and easy. Please take a few minutes to watch the video below.



Would you like to improve business performance using rolling forecasts? Take the first step to contact us for a discovery call.

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