Enables public sector organizations to create complex modelling for revenue, projections, and activity-based costing.
Questica, a leading provider of cloud-based budgeting, performance, transparency and engagement solutions is pleased to announce it’s added a powerful solution-wide Advanced Calculation Engine to Questica Budget Suite to enable public sector organizations to create complex models for revenue, projections and activity-based costing.
Questica Budget is an end-to-end budget preparation and performance management software solution for public sector agencies looking to modernize how they budget, forecast, analyze and report on their operating, capital and salaries budgets.
Questica Budget’s Advanced Calculation Engine (ACE) is a general purpose calculation system that enables users to create formulas ranging from a single formula in a cell up to large scale mathematical models to do things such as forecasting expenses and revenue from drivers and historical data. ACE’s features are designed specifically for budgeting, which allows users to budget in a way that would be difficult in a traditional Excel spreadsheet system.
Questica Budget’s ACE capabilities are based on three parts: QCode, Variables and Templates. QCode is a superset of Excel’s calculation language; that means that any function that works in Excel should work in QCode, plus there are additional special functions just for budgeting. Users in finance departments and budget offices already know how to use Excel, and this makes the tool more user-friendly to learn. Variables allow users to calculate and share rates and values across an organization, while Templates permit users to package up calculation models so that they can be built once and used over and over, even by other departments.
“We work collaboratively with our customers to identify ways to better leverage the data and information within our solution to create one source of budget truth,” said Craig Ross, Chief Revenue Officer at Questica. “ACE allows our government, education and healthcare users to compare multiple driver-based, what-if scenarios and assess the impacts of changes to the budget across their organizations. It strengthens collaboration among stakeholders by allowing complex and flexible formulas to be shared across departments and eliminate the need to email spreadsheets back and forth.”
So how can this new ACE feature help an organization with their budgeting process? With ACE, an organization has a set of tools that can be used to calculate any kind of budget, including but not limited to, balancing a budget by generating the draws and contributions to reserves, and forecasting for expenses and revenues based on any number of program or service drivers. For example:
- A city could determine the expenses to resurface a stretch of road based on its type and length.
- A university could forecast revenue based on student enrollment for each program and course.
- A hospital could budget based on the number of patients and procedures. Later they can compare not only budget versus actual dollars of revenue, but also budget versus actual patients and procedures.
While ACE’s calculation templates are a good fit for activity-based budgeting, they can do other types of functions, such as build an auto-balancing function for operating budgets to generate a draw and a push to and from reserves, and to calculate projections to year end based on historical actuals.
“It’s important that Questica Budget is able to capture all the calculations, not just the results,” states James Orr, Product Manager at Questica. “If a budget line was worked out using a rate times that quantity should be visible in the system. That’s very empowering for our users. They can present a budget to stakeholders such as council or board members, staff, citizens or other constituents and be able to explain how they arrived at the budget numbers because the calculations are all in one place. Plus, they can update budgets quickly by changing the drivers instead of starting over.”
As a leader of budgeting and preparation software since 1998, Questica’s goal is to make public sector finance better for everyone. Almost 700 governments, colleges and universities, K-12 schools, hospitals and healthcare facilities, and non-profit organizations throughout North America have eliminated spreadsheets, opting for smarter planning, budgeting, management, transparency and engagement with our solutions. Questica is also named to the 2019 GovTech 100 top government companies listing with its sister organizations under GTY Technology.
About GTY Technology Holdings Inc.
GTY Technology Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: GTYH) (“GTY”)) brings leading government technology companies together to achieve a new standards in citizen engagement and resource management. Through its six subsidiaries, GTY offers an intuitive cloud-based suite of solutions for state and local governments spanning functions in procurement, payments, grant management, budgeting, and permitting: Bonfire provides strategic sourcing and procurement software to enable confident and compliant spend; CityBase provides government payment solutions to connect constituents with utilities and government agencies; eCivis offers a grant management system to maximize grant revenues and track performance; Open Counter provides government payment software to guide applicants through complex permitting and licensing procedures; Questica offers budget preparation management and transparency software to deliver on financial and non-financial strategic objectives; Sherpa provides public sector budgeting software and consulting services.