Moving Beyond Budgeting: Integrating Continuous Planning and Adaptive Control
The Beyond Budgeting Round Table (BBRT) was set up in response to growing dissatisfaction, indeed frustration, with traditional budgeting. Since its inception in January 1998, 60 organizations have participated in the BBRT. Though its origins are in the United Kingdom, it now has members from many countries, including Belgium, France, Germany, Holland, Norway, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States. There are also regional BBRT groups in North America and Australia.
All member companies joined because they recognized the budgeting process was too long, too expensive, added little value, and was increasingly out of kilter with their competitive environment. In fact, research suggests that between 80 to 90 percent of companies are dissatisfied with their planning and budgeting processes. This process takes, on average, between four and five months to complete.1 It also involves many people and absorbs up to 20 to 30 percent of senior executives’ and financial managers’ time.2 In a recent survey, financial directors ranked budgetary reform as their top priority.3
Despite these concerns, however, few were convinced at the outset that there was a viable alternative. Our task was to provide this alternative. We did this by first identifying those companies that had abandoned ...