by rwalliker » Wed Jan 03, 2018 3:36 pm
4CastPro is essentially a business forecasting,budgeting consolidation and reporting system.
It comes with a dummy company called Plantest.accdb that can be referred to as a reference. It also has a full help forum accessible from the main menu. 4CastPro can be used for monthly or quarterly forecasting/reporting,budgeting or for producing the financials for a 5 year plan (There is a 5 year planning tool under Administration menu).
4CastPro is designed to import actuals from your accounting system and it works best when you import your own Chart of accounts. It is a database system that records and forecasts TB movements and balances over time. The System can record 12 periods of data (referred to as Time Series) for the past 2 years and up to 6 years forward (The Forecasting Time Series which includes the current year) as well as being able to store 2 budget time series of data to report against. The Forecasting Time Series can be setup to automate balance sheet forecasting by calculating trade debtors and creditors (by setting days against an account), fixed assets and depreciation (by setting up the FAMatrix), Loans and VAT. Accounts can also be setup with methods such as %ACCT or ACCRUE to allow for automatic recalculation based on changes to the forecast.
Budgets for future years are normally set using the Next Year Time Series when towards the end of the current year.
Create New Company/Initial Sync of your Chart of Accounts After creating a new company in the Company Manager you will have a company with a default Chart of Accounts. You can import your Company Chart of Accounts by importing the COA structure from a TB or set of NL movements in xls(x) format that you upload from your computer/tablet.
Example NL.xlsx and TB.xlsx files are available for download. They require named ranges TB or NL respectively
All Accounts need to be allocated to a Statutory Accounts TYPE and to a default Management Accounts layout grouping
Both files have the same first 5 columns: ACCT,ACCTName,CC,TYPE,ACCTGP0
CC - Needs to be same as that in 4CastPro eg 001FCT
TYPE - Each account needs to be assigned to a Statutory Accounts type eg INC,COS,OVH (see list below)
ACCTGP0 - This is your Management Accounts layout grouping Eg Main Sales, Other Sales etc.
Go to File-Upload/Import TB The uploaded file needs to be in one of the following 2 formats 1 TB.xls(x) – Normal year to date TB balances in a single column Or 2 NL.xls(x) – Brought forward balances and monthly TB movements in columns named BF,CYFCT_1,CYFCT_2 etc. This is the preferred option as it allows you to import monthly TB movements and bring in a whole year or year to date figures in one go (Last Year and Current Year).
You select the uploaded file and Click on “Initial Sync TB” or “Initial Sync NL” to initially sync the COA with your underlying Accounting system.
You can then select the uploaded file and Click on “Import TB” or “Import NL” to bring in actual data.
There is a Youtube video on the above on our website or alternatively we can set up a demo for you using your data if you email your TB and an example of your Management Accounts layout.
Ongoing TB Importing:
1 Using Excel’s Query feature you can set-up a refreshable query against your Accounting Systems database (eg using the Sage odbc driver). This would allow you to bring data in each month by refreshing the query and uploading the latest file.
2 Alternatively there is a "Quick TB Import" button. This requires a simple xls TB with columns headed ACCT(Account code) and BAL(Account balance) on row1 of Sheet1. No named range is necessary
Other Setup Tasks: • Goto Administration-Setup: Setting up the Company Name, Year End, Current Year and other assumptions • Goto Administration-COA: To check your COA and ensure everything is rolling up under correct TYPES and ACCTGP’s • Goto Administration-P&L Layout: To add a custom structure to your P&L Account eg separate Sales, COS or Overhead sections • Goto Administration-Companies: Setting up the Companies within a group • Goto Administration-Departments: Setting up the Departments/Sites within the group • Goto Administration-FAMatrix: Setting up Fixed Asset Matrix so Depreciation is automatically calculated in your forecast/budget • Goto File-CompanyManager: The Administrator can setup Users and their access levels for a particular company database and create/delete/copy company databases • Goto Excel-Custom Excel Reporting: Configuration of the offline reporting spreadsheets & writing any reports to cover requirements not covered by the 'canned' reports