Financial Forecasting Services

The success of any business ultimately lies in the numbers. No matter how passionate business owners may be about their company or product, passion alone cannot create a successful business if there isn’t a profit to back it up. Savvy business owners know how important it is to look at past data and project future financial outcomes in order to plan the direction to take their business to achieve maximum success. That’s where financial forecasting plays a critical role in assisting individuals and organizations make informed decisions about their financial future.  

Financial forecasting is a method that makes financial projections to help individuals or organizations when it comes to any decision-making regarding future business performance. Financial forecasting takes into account past performance data, current industry trends, and other factors that are relevant to the future financial success of a business. 

Types of Financial Forecasting

There are several different methods for performing financial forecasting, each designed to cater to a specific business design or need. Understanding the four main different types of financial forecasting can help organizations determine which plan is best for helping their business succeed.

Time Series Analysis

Time series analysis is a method of financial forecasting that focuses on historical values and patterns to predict future performance. This form of financial forecasting focuses on trend analysis, cyclical fluctuation analysis, and issues of seasonality. Time series analyses can be performed by using any data that is measured over time at evenly spaced intervals. This type of analysis can allow businesses to investigate performance over specific periods of time to help make decisions about how to best utilize their resources in the future during similar time frames.

Causal Models 

Causal models use historical cause-and-effect relationships to predict future performance. It looks at how specific interventions might have impacted a business in the past by comparing performance before and after such interventions took place. By examining the cause-and-effect relationship between these actions and their outcomes, individuals and organizations can make informed decisions on what interventions to implement going forward and how these interventions could potentially impact performance. 

Judgmental Forecasting

Judgmental forecasting is a process that helps predict future outcomes when there is a lack of concrete historical data. Examples of scenarios where judgmental forecasting is appropriate include when businesses are just starting up, when a new competitor appears on the market, or when the market is facing totally new conditions. Judgmental forecasting is the most effective when performed by someone with extensive knowledge of the business and who is familiar with current industry trends.

Simulation Models

Simulation models are a method that allows businesses to forecast future financial outcomes based on a complex mathematical model that’s designed to be manipulated to display various scenarios. Simulation models utilize mathematical formulas and relationships to replicate a company’s response to different situations. Simulation models allow companies to easily experiment with different scenarios to determine their predicted outcomes on company finances.

Financial Forecasting vs. Budgeting

Financial forecasting and budgeting are both critical components of financial success and, while they’re very closely related, they are two very different concepts. Financial forecasting is a forward-thinking process that is used to predict future financial performance. Budgeting, on the other hand, is a plan for allocating resources that is typically based on financial forecasting results. Both processes are crucial in financial management. 

Financial forecasting allows individuals and businesses to use past data or company trends to project an estimate for their future performance. Close analysis of financial forecasting will help a company decide where its resources will be best allocated in the future. This is crucial for budgeting when concrete decisions will be made regarding future hiring trends, departmental focus, and other areas directly related to the allocation of resources. 

The Financial Forecasting Process

Financial forecasting is a multi-step process that takes considerable time and effort to get the best possible prediction of a company or individual’s future outcomes. Here, we’ll take a closer look at the steps involved in financial forecasting.

Gather Historical Data

Most financial forecasting will begin with a comprehensive collection of financial data. The type of financial forecasting will determine how much and what type of historical data will be necessary.

Analyze Trends and Patterns

Analyzing the collected data is the next step in predicting future outcomes. The data may be analyzed based on trends over time or trends before or after certain interventions were taken. 

Identify Key Drivers and Assumptions

If noticeable changes in historical data are observed during the analysis, industry knowledge is applied to determine why these changes occurred. Identifying these key drivers is essential to planning future interventions to maximize profit and revenue.

It’s critical to note that financial forecasting is an ongoing process. It’s not something that should be completed and then forgotten. Forecasts should be refined and updated based on new information as it becomes available.

The Role of Financial Forecasting in Personal Finance

While businesses and companies have long understood the importance of financial forecasting, individuals are quickly learning the role financial forecasting can play in personal finance as well. Individuals can use financial forecasting to help plan for retirement, ensuring they maintain a lifestyle they’re comfortable with and are able to enjoy. Individuals who are struggling to overcome debt can use financial forecasting as a way to help them reduce or eliminate their debt completely. Finally, individuals with long-term financial goals can use financial forecasting to help them achieve these goals and reach their full financial potential. 

Take Control of Your Financial Future With Pasquesi Sheppard

Financial forecasting is the best way to ensure future financial success for individuals or organizations. By closely analyzing past data and trends, Pasquesi Sheppard can help to ensure the best possible outcomes in the future. Don’t hesitate to contact Pasquesi Sheppard today for a consultation. Our financial experts have the skills and knowledge about financial forecasting that are necessary to help you obtain your financial goals. Don’t delay in planning for your future success. Take a look at our financial planning information to learn more about all of the services we offer, and contact us today.