Creating a faster and more efficient budgeting and forecasting solution to save time and money.
Snack Brands Australia, like many businesses, were managing their annual operating plan, using an excel run process. Snack Brands required a cost-effective and tailored solution designed to streamline workflow and increase efficiency.
Problem: For many years Snack Brands Australia used an excel based process to create their Annual Operating Plan (AOP).
Each cost centre would have their own excel sheet and it was the job of the finance team to aggregate all these sheets of information. It made the tracking process more strenuous than it needed to be. The executive team needed to increase workflow visibility and real-time reporting on the business progress before the plan was finalised. With increased growth in sales and production, the AOP process needed to be re-evaluated; it was time to invest to incorporate the planning processes into the information environment.
Solution: Walkerscott developed a fully automated budgeting and forecasting process on the Kepion platform.
Snack Brands Australia engaged with the Walkerscot team to review the current process, and provide recommendations on a tailored solution that would streamline workflow and drive cost efficiencies. The initial brief from Snack Brands was to improve efficiencies by implementing a faster; more accurate and cost-effective excel based creation of the Annual Operating Plan. By replacing it with a platform that would increase efficiencies by simplifying the operating complexities while providing a more detailed level of forecasting within each cost centre.
After engaging with finance and cost centre heads through several workshops, our team designed and developed a customised solution using the Kepion platform. Our tailored application allows Snack Brands to have a secure, centralised solution for their AOP processes. This includes cost centre access, which only allows a user visibility of the cost centre their security access level allows and a clever workflow system that notifies all users when they need to complete their inputs by.
Our team also developed a suite of reports and dashboards to provide real-time updates on the progress of the plan. This allows the finance and executive teams the information they need to ensure the plan is accurate and delivered on time.
Outcome: Completely integrated planning solution
As a result of Walkerscott’s solution, a task that used to take 4 months has been reduced to less than 2 months.
The benefits of implementing a tailored Kepion solution include:
- Dramatically reduced project hours of senior finance staff
- AOP reconciliation has been made redundant due to the robust referential integrity that comes from having the plan stored in a structured database.
- Secured Reporting: Built-in security levels for intended audiences.
- Centralised database with automated integration and flexible reporting and analysis tools, including real-time reporting.
- Improved reporting accuracy and immediate access to information.
Following the successful deployment, Snack Brands Australia has engaged Walkerscott on an ongoing basis to continually improve their forecasting process with the addition of a “Cost to Serve” application that forecasts all logistics costs within the business. With a focus on continual improvement, the latest application of the solution is a manufacturing forecast process that will give Snack Brands an in-depth analysis of manufacturing performance.
Snack Brands Australia’s customised Kepion solution has provided ongoing improvements to their operations and transparency in their planning processes. Their long-term goal is to remove excel from all company-wide planning processes!