Whether you’re a big or small business owner, drafting plans for your company is essential. It serves a number of important purposes, such as defining your venture’s status quo, describing your future intentions, and hopefully attracting partners or investors.

This strategy can’t  be based on your hopes and dreams alone. It has to contain concrete accounting data too. That’s where QuickBooks can assist. Our software makes it significantly simpler to review your company’s past performance, generate financial projections and track your progress to these monetary goals.

Work Smarter, Not Harder

Depending on the package you’ve bought, a Business Plan Tool may already be included in your software. This is a document-generating wizard that guides you through the process of creating your own report from scratch. You can access it by:

  1. Launching QuickBooks
  2. Choosing Company
  3. Selecting Planning & Budgeting
  4. Clicking on Use Business Plan Tool

The setup wizard walks you through various screens, providing helpful information while asking detailed questions about your enterprise. Your answers are then automatically inserted into the software’s template. Once you’re done, you simply have to proofread the final copy to ensure that it’s drafted as you wanted.

What QuickBooks Provides

If you’re wondering what the final report might look like, know that it follows the setup of most comprehensive business plans. As a result, it covers information on your:

  • Company status quo
  • Products
  • Competitors
  • Operations
  • Management
  • Financial data
  • Related plans and projections

Therefore, in addition to fielding questions in an interview format, you’re asked to complete two spreadsheets – one for Income, the other for Expenses. These examine your present financial situation. When these figures are compared to your previous performance, it can highlight some of the operational or management patterns behind your status quo.

Should your company already use our software, this accounting information is readily available through your and can be exported to automatically complete the worksheets. Furthermore, the same data can be utilised to compile your financial predictions, via the:

  • Income Projection Wizard
  • Expenses Projection Wizard

Both are based on the last 12 months of business and analyse the cost of goods sold (COGS). Alternatively, you can take advantage of the QuickBooks Forecast Overview, which provides you with a summary of your estimated income and expenses over any period of time. Of course, for start-ups with no existing data, there’s the option to fill these details in manually.

The final document is presented in text and other professional formats, such as tables, graphs and charts, making it easy to use in pitches and meetings. For added convenience, the Business Plan Tool also offers you a three-year financial projection of your enterprise, predicting the potential success or losses of your company.

Tips for Drafting Realistic Business Predictions

When drawing up your revenue and cost estimates, or planning your future marketing and manufacturing strategies, good financial management is key. For instance, you have to prepare for potential losses and emergencies too.

Therefore, we strongly recommend that you:

  • Identify the ups and downs of your financial cycle
  • Determine your break-even point
  • Plan for the worst
  • Allow for additional cash at hand
  • Constantly review and revise your projections

For more information and advice on creating effective business plans or financial projections, contact the QuickBooks Support Team.