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Winning CFOs: Implementing and Applying Better Practices, with Website by David Parmenter

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CHAPTER 15

Quarterly Rolling Planning: An Evolvement from Quarterly Rolling Forecasting

Quarterly rolling planning is a process that will revolutionize any organization, whether public or private sector. It removes the four main barriers to success that an annual planning process erects: an annual funding regime where budget holders are encouraged to be dysfunctional, a reporting regime based around monthly targets that have no relevance, a three-month period where management is not particularly productive, and a remuneration system based on an annual target. The only thing certain about an annual target is that it is certainly wrong; it is either too soft or too hard for the operating conditions.

This chapter is an extract from a white paper1 I deliver around the world that has revolutionized the way organizations perform rolling forecasting. At some point it would be worth reading the other issues that I have had to omit due to space constraints.

Quarterly Rolling Forecasting Is the Most Important Management Tool of This Decade

This chapter explains why quarterly rolling forecasting (QRF) is the most important management tool of this decade and why the rolling forecasts of the past are different from the 21st-century QRF.

  • QRFs, normally going out six quarters, are a bottom-up process, with the forecast of the next quarter being the reporting benchmarks.
  • Quarterly rolling planning (QRP) takes QRF a step further—budget holders are now funded quarterly in advance from the approved forecast. ...

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