Budget & Forecast - Variance Analysis
Castaway offers you the ability to save a Budget and a Forecast which you can use to perform your Variance Analysis.
The difference between a Castaway Budget and Forecast can be simplified as follows:
We think of the budget as say your annual plan that you’re setting at the start of the year and that you'd run variance reports against. It generally won’t change through the year, though you do have the option to revise it. Typically when you've finished setting up your project's forecast, you'd then proceed to Save Budget to lock down those values so that you can compare your Actuals against them.
Throughout the year as you’re managing the business's performance against the original budget, you may wish to revise your forecast to factor in what has occurred and the new opportunities and risks that lie ahead.
Once you've revised your project, you can Save Forecast to create a second and separate data layer for you to use in your Variance Analysis.
[For Castaway desktop users, you might have known these as Original Budget (Budget) and Revised Budget (Forecast)].
What is a Projected report?
The Projected Report is the Report layer that displays the latest set of values which include Actuals Imported and updated forecast numbers.
Saving your Budget & Forecast
Once you're happy with your Budget or Forecast, they can be saved by navigating to Manage Budget in the top right within any workspace of your Project and selecting the most appropriate option in the pop-up modal.
Note: The Save Forecast option will be inactive unless you Save Budget first.
Working with Budget & Forecast
Understanding the difference between Budget and Forecast is important as it becomes the base values of your comparative Variance Analysis against your Actuals.
If you observe your Variance Reports and find your Budget or Forecast values do not match your expectations, you can always adjust them accordingly.
When you select an element and review the Element Editor, you may realise that the periods in your project that have Actuals are now inactive, and that you can no longer amend the forecast you previously entered. To be able to amend the forecast for Actualised periods, you'll need to Roll Your Actuals Back. Once you have confirmed the changes, you can Save Budget/Forecast to override the old values, Roll Your Actuals Forward again, then review your new Variance Reports.