The forecasting process is often perceived as a solitary function based on the way it is most commonly implemented within an organization. The reality is, however, that almost all forecasting processes require some level of consensus with other stakeholders. This makes forecasting more of a team effort rather than an individual contribution when delivering forecast reports for regional or business unit consolidation or to executive decision makers. Forecasting is therefore a collaborative process.
The technology choice of desktop Excel is a major contributor to the challenges of collaboration. We have already talked about the misalignment of methodologies on the “Improve Process Control” web-page which definitely is an obstacle to collaboration.
The very nature of working with files on a network drive, impedes collaboration, especially when trying to share and work with teams in different locations and time zones. These teams require a much more efficient way of working together. Emailing Excel models around the world can lead to version control nightmares and confusion around the latest assumptions and models being used.
The key to collaboration is to focus in on the differences in assumptions and their impact on results. Teams can then debate the relative support for differing assumptions until a consensus is achieved.
Discover how leveraging an enterprise forecasting platform along with collaboration best practices can increase the efficiency of team collaboration. Not only can you improve the quality of decision making but you can compress the timelines and resources consumed in regular forecasting processes.