BUDGETING FOR AUTO-PARTS STORES
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One of the leading suppliers of automotive parts in Australia, servicing both retail and commercial sectors engaged Parity to develop a new budget system.
Our client was using a spreadsheet-based budget process to collect 12-month forecasts from individual stores and aggregating them to an entity level budget. The process was heavily dependent on email, as well as manual entry from members of the finance team. Due to a rapid growth in store numbers, several months were required each year to produce a budget. The client needed a better solution, with the key requirements being:
- Eliminate reliance on email
- Reduce requirement for manual data entry
- Significantly reduce the time required to complete the process
Additionally, the user interface at ‘Store’ level needed to be spreadsheet based and similar to the existing system in order to avoid the need for major retraining of store staff.
Parity worked closely with the finance team and key store managers to review the existing processes. This was then re-engineered to utilise Power Query, PowerPivot and VBA to remove the need for emailing data. A new, simpler budget tool was developed with single click refresh to import and update all individual store data. The requirement to manually copy and paste data was eliminated, as well as reducing the budget workbook size from 200 to 15 worksheets.
“The entire budget turnaround time was reduced from months to weeks following implementation of the new budget process and tool”
The entire budget turnaround time was reduced from months to weeks following implementation of the new budget process and tool. The client also reduced the effort required by finance team members, as well as significantly decreasing the risk of budget errors by removing the need to email and copy and paste data between spreadsheets.
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