It’s September, and we all know that for many of us that means budget season. As your budgets are being completed, you need to think about how you allocate those costs across your business using Microsoft Forecaster.
There are two ways to utilize Forecaster for allocations:
In working with customers, I have implemented both ways. For variable allocations I always used the Allocations Wizard, since it’s more difficult to replicate variable allocations with a calculation. For fixed allocations, I have used both, depending on the complexity. If the allocation is simple, you can use a combination of the @LOOKUP calculation function and a calculation set. If it’s a bit more complex or you have calculations that must run in order, its best to use the Fixed Allocation method in the wizard.
Did you know you can open the allocations wizard two ways?
If you prefer the worksheet method, you can use the worksheet, but the wizard is a more intuitive step by step approach. You can choose between Calculated Percentages or Predefined Percentages. Calculated is for variable allocations, such as those that are based on headcount or any other variable driver in your business. Predefined is for fixed allocations, such as always allocating 25% of the total utilities cost to the Customer Service department, as they occupy an entire building.
The following steps of the wizard walk you through the sections you see on the following view of a Rent allocation in the Allocations Worksheet.
The sections are as follows:
The Microsoft Forecaster Supplemental guide contains an entire chapter on Allocations with examples of calculations and detailed explanations. I encourage you to start using Microsoft Forecaster to its full potential by taking advantage of this great feature.