Government budget teams using Excel spreadsheets to manage their budgeting process not only have the challenge of countless hours of manually entering data and checking for errors, but also the confusion of organizing multiple spreadsheets between multiple departments. With so much time spent on preparing and compiling budget data, there is little opportunity for these teams to analyze the budget and plan for the long-term objectives that your government agency wants to accomplish.
Budget transformation is about improving the way your organization budgets to reduce errors, foster collaboration and gain insight from the budget for better data-driven decision-making. Transforming your budget does not have to be about monumental changes, but it can be about the cumulative effective of small changes to create efficiency and accuracy. The benefits of streamlining your budget workflow results in more time for strategic planning and analysis, and in turn puts your agency in a better position to serve and engage with your constituents.
Software solutions for budget transformation
Questica Budget is an easy-to-use, cloud-based budgeting solution specifically designed for the public sector for operating, capital and salary preparation and performance management. By automating workflow and providing dynamic functionality for developing, collaborating, reviewing and approving the budget, your government agency will have more time for analyzing and forecasting, and working on the priorities and projects that provide value to citizens and the communities you serve.
Questica customers have shared how Questica Budget has saved them time and enabled their governments to link departmental strategies to multi-year plans and long-range financial models. One customer reported that Questica Budget freed up 80% of the budgeting time previously spent collating data to being able to analyze that information. Plus, using Questica Budget has created more time to work on funding forecasts, projections and long-range financial plans.
Streamlined budgeting process
Integrating seamlessly with financial, human resources and other systems, Questica Budget houses the budgets from all of your departments in one place to create a single source of data truth. By using customizable dashboards, you can manage your operating, salary and capital budgets, plus generate custom reports, create what-if scenarios and develop complex budget formulas. With assigned levels of security and a system for submitting and approving proposed changes, your government agency can ensure the budgeting cycle runs smoothly and securely. The current budget can even be rolled forward to the next budgeting cycle to give you a head start on planning and preparation.
Strategic staff planning
Since salaries and benefits are the largest expense in your operating budget, staff planning is crucial because of its impact on your organization’s fiscal health. However, trying to organize positions, market rates, union contracts, benefits and other information for each employee can be a monumental task when using spreadsheets. A software solution like Questica Budget can allow you to calculate staff costs, monitor cost drivers and expenses, adjust staff positions and add new positions, create what-if scenarios and forecast for costs. Shift the time you save with a software solution to strategic staff planning which ensures that you have the right people with the right skills to achieve your agency’s short and long-term priorities.
Reach peak performance
Questica Performance allows your government agency to track and measure the performance of unlimited budget and non-budget key performance indicators (KPIs) with a system of programs and scorecards to ensure that your government is meeting important goals and objectives. With interactive analytic tools, you can drill down to specific strategies, programs and initiatives to see where changes or improvements need to be made.
Advanced Calculation Engine
Our Advanced Calculation Engine (“ACE”) is a general-purpose calculation system inside Questica Budget that enables your organization to create complex models for revenue, projections and activity-based costing. Instead of developing formulas and models outside of the budget in an Excel spreadsheet and transferring the results to your budget, ACE allows you to develop budgets and then capture the functions and formulas you created for future reference and use in Questica Budget. Since ACE capabilities are based on Excel’s calculation language, users familiar with building spreadsheet formulas will feel right at home developing models and formulas in Questica Budget.
Improving transparency and accountability
With citizens and stakeholders demanding greater transparency and accountability from your government, sharing your budget and financial information is easy using data visualization. Questica Budget integrates with our data visualization solution, Questica OpenBook, to help your government translate the budget into engaging charts, tables, graphics with descriptive text and informational pop-ups. In addition, OpenBook’s Capital Project Explorer allows you to display capital projects on an interactive map and include project information, such as the budget, actual spend, funding sources and associated documentation, images, videos and more. Plus, Questica’s solutions also integrate with leading budgeting simulation tools, such as Balancing Act, to create two-way feedback opportunities with your constituents about how their tax dollars are spent.
Award-winning budget book
Complete your budget transformation by creating an award compliant budget book at an affordable cost using Questica’s Budget Book powered by Caseware. With a design based on the criteria for making a submission to the Government Finance Officers Association’s (GFOA) Distinguished Budget Presentation Program, Budget Book is a comprehensive document management and financial reporting tool that your government agency can use to create, collaborate and publish a budget book to share with citizens and stakeholders.
Budget transformation is about efficient, accurate and collaborative budgeting that saves your city, town, county, state or agency time so that you can focus on the priorities and projects that provide value to citizens. Transform your budget today with a secure cloud-based solution that offers multi-year budgeting for operating, salaries and capital budgets, change control management, staff planning, what-if scenarios and decision packages, reporting and auditing, an advanced calculation engine, performance management, and much more. Make disorganized and time-consuming spreadsheets a thing of the past and move forward into a brighter future with Questica’s government budgeting software solutions. To learn more about Questica and how our software solutions can help your organization – check out our customer success stories, our news/blog, or sign up for a free information webinar today.