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The Power of Accurate Personnel Planning in Times of Uncertainty

March 14, 2023
Workforce Planning
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The ongoing economic uncertainty continues to pose a serious challenge for CEOs and financial leaders. And one of the most significant obstacles is finding ways to do more with less. As companies slash budgets, finance teams need to find ways of making the company’s cash go further while accomplishing the same goals with fewer resources. If companies want to succeed, they need to craft their personnel planning with care, ensuring their choices hold up to close scrutiny from upper management and investors. 

At Centage, we recognize that a company’s employees are its greatest asset, and that properly optimizing that asset can enable organizations to execute strategies more effectively. It starts with an acknowledgement that the most complex portion of your budget requires keen attention to detail, deep integrations with existing datasets across your organization and end to end automation to ensure accurate and timely results and essential collaboration. Modernizing this complex and time consuming budget item will help you better manage personnel expenses, support company growth and effectively budget and plan for an evolving workforce.

The importance of workforce planning

Companies often confuse strategic workforce planning with more general annual resource planning. In the past, businesses engaged in resource forecasting as part of their annual planning process. However, today, finance leaders struggle to predict where their company will be in six months or a year. By contrast, workforce planning is a process that occurs year round, undergoing regular reviews and updates. The most successful companies have the agility to respond to changes in both the buying cycle and global economic circumstances. With appropriate information and resources, decision makers can plan personnel decisions based on both current and projected needs. Moreover, they can communicate these goals to investors and other stakeholders. 

The good news is the right FP&A software can help you assess your resources and make the necessary adjustments to meet your company’s goals, as well as help you evaluate exactly how various employees and departments contribute to the bottom line. 

Using FP&A software for personnel planning

Modern, cloud budgeting and planning tools automate mundane, time consuming and error prone processes, help to plan for workforce expenses more accurately and efficiently, and enable seamless collaboration across your team. Automating the process allows your finance team to better control expenses across different operational centers, shifts and products, adjust payroll numbers for high turnover departments, and even budget at an individual employee level to see the cash flow implications of each employee’s taxes and benefits throughout the year. And by relying on dynamic cloud-based tools, your team can work anywhere, anytime, making it possible to effectively support a remote workforce.

Planning Maestro, Centage’s cloud budgeting and planning solution, uses built-in logic to track expenditures like payroll, which don’t fit cleanly into an Excel spreadsheet. In general, spreadsheets can’t accurately calculate total expenses because of the complexity of this part of the budget. Along with tracking full-time, part-time, and seasonal workers, payroll teams have to look at overtime, premium time, and shift differentials. Additional factors that can affect your budget include caps on FICA and FUTA, delayed starts on benefits, and new hires beginning mid month. Recognizing that traditional spreadsheets are prone to errors, savvy financial departments use cloud-based software solutions to create more holistic work plans.

Leaving spreadsheets behind for your workforce planning needs also offers enhanced overall business security. After all, managing personnel data with Excel means leaving confidential data vulnerable. With Planning Maestro, you can minimize this risk by carefully controlling who sees what. The level of security offered by our cloud-based software solution exceeds that of password protection, thereby preventing costly and inconvenient leaks. 

Finally, companies are adopting more sophisticated budgeting options in order to save time and energy. In the past, employees had to devote hours of their day to manually entering data from various HR and payroll systems. Thanks to modern FP&A solutions, teams can easily input information from multiple sources and collaborate with workers across the globe. Additionally, companies can calculate hourly employee salaries automatically while taking overtime and shift differentials into account. They can view existing employees and terminations and generate reports with the click of a button. 

Making better personnel planning decisions

Modern, cloud budgeting software can significantly improve the process of building driver-based budgets while allowing you to update them as needed. Import a range of metrics, including deal size, geo-location, product type, sales cycle, and average customer revenue. The end result is that you can gain the power needed to make smarter business decisions while reducing stress and strain for your finance team. 

Created by financial professionals, Centage offers sophisticated budgeting, planning, forecasting and analysis software to help companies accomplish their goals. By taking advantage of the enhanced financial visibility and control, companies can achieve both greater growth and higher profits. Whether you’re looking for support with budgeting, forecasting, data analysis, or personnel planning, our modern cloud solution offers the advantages you need in today’s changing economy.  

Read on to learn how Equitas Health used Planning Maestro to simplify their budgeting process to provide more detailed, accurate personnel planning. 

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