Business plans are constantly evolving as the market changes. What worked for the business in the first quarter of the year might not work in the last. Financial circumstances may change. Companies might be encouraged to pull back on spending, or could be granted more runway. Similarly, it’s not uncommon for subscription services, agencies, and freelancers to increase their rates over the course of the year. Those contingencies force teams to review and analyze their budget while planning for each upcoming quarter. Management will often have to present their proposed budget to executives for approval before adding new employees, ad dollars, or softwares to their department’s plan.
But in order to secure the proposed budget, you have to do the groundwork to justify your ask. Why do you need the additional budget to scale your part of the business? What are your goals, and how will this new budget support your efforts? You’ll need to lay it all out in a meeting with upper-management to get their final sign-off.
Here are 4 tips to help you secure your budget for Q1 and beyond.
Do your research
Before you can propose a new budget for your department, it’s crucial that you do your research. What resources or softwares will help your team’s productivity and output? This can include things like social media listening tools, presentation softwares like Beautiful.ai, freelance designers, or task management apps. You can sign up for free trials, compare pricing, read reviews, and gather examples to see what is the best fit for your team’s needs. Having done the research, you can go to executives with your requests and have the knowledge to back it up.
Outline your goals
A department’s budget is objective, and should be determined by the goals for the quarter or year. For example, if the team’s goals are to be more active in community engagement and test new marketing campaigns to generate brand awareness, adding new productivity tools and softwares might do the trick. If you’re looking to increase sales opportunities, you may need to invest in adding to the headcount of the sales team. It’s important to outline your goals to justify your budget proposals and explain what you intend to do with the resources and funds.
Consider industry trends
In any business planning, you need to consider industry trends for the upcoming quarter. Will those plans force you to pivot and release a new product feature or service that wasn’t originally in the queue? Will it push you to test something new in your go-to-market strategy? These contingencies need to be accounted for in your budget plan so that you’ll have a reserve should you need it. Planning ahead and tracking industry trends can help you make the best use of your budget.
Present your analysis to executives
Once you’ve organized your goals and compiled a list of the resources your team needs, it’s time to present your proposal to executive management. In order to hold their attention for the duration of your meeting, you’ll need to be clear and to the point. Using a presentation can ensure your audience understands exactly what you’re asking for and why.
If you don’t know where to start, that’s okay. We have two customizable presentation templates to help inform your own budget planning.
A budget review presentation is used to review your budget from the previous fiscal year, and keep your finances on track all while scaling your business. Teams can analyze budget allocations from the previous quarter and discuss which departments may require additional resources with the help of Beautiful.ai’s budget review presentation example.
Our customizable template has everything you need for a budget review presentation like financial roadmap, outlook and funding. A successful budget review presentation can help businesses and partners— like investors— align on which money is going where for the overall financial health of the company.
Our budget review template can also help you analyze financial resources with key stakeholders, plan out a budget roadmap and outlook for the upcoming year, or get investors and board members up to speed on the status of the business.
It’s not enough to come up with a list of goals or brainstorm a list of ideas for your business. You have to map out how you’ll accomplish those goals or make your ideas come to life… within a reasonable budget.
When you need to make your case to managers or executives for additional resources, a budget proposal presentation is an essential tool. Your presentation should explain your idea, what obstacles you may come across, and why your desired budget is necessary for your project.
Use a budget proposal presentation to gain funding for your department, explain the budget for a new project or initiative, or fund new hires for your team.