NEUBRAINER, the official blog of Neubrain

Yana McConaty

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What Makes Budgeting Software "User-Friendly"?

Posted by Yana McConaty

Often times we see “user-friendly” as a key criterion in the evaluation of budgeting software products, or hear “we have implemented a new budgeting software, but it is not user-friendly”. A system's user interface determines how users interact with the system; therefore, it is a very important aspect of the total user experience with the system. But is it all about the interface or is there more to consider? What makes a system user-friendly: is it visually appealing interface design, or a familiar Excel-like interface, or maybe something else?

After seeing a lot of hype and confusion caused by software vendors positioning their products as the most user-friendly based on a some sort of feature: familiar excel interface, web-based or cloud-based (and therefore, somehow by default, user-friendly), Neubrain experts decided to shed some light on the topic and share key considerations in selecting and implementing a user-friendly budgeting system.

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Topics: best practices, budgeting software

NEU Infographic: Key Reasons to Improve Budgeting and Performance Management

Posted by Yana McConaty

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Topics: budgeting, performance management, tools

“Spreadsheets Are An Excellent Hammer, But Not Everything in Your Business Is a Nail.” (Val Sribar, Meta Group)

Posted by Yana McConaty

After speaking with many customers about the disadvantages of using spreadsheets to support their company or enterprise-wide budgeting and planning activities, we’ve decided to come up with a short list that features technical limitations of spreadsheets.

  1. Poor integration with back-end systems
  2. No way of knowing what data is missing
  3. 2-dimensional, not sophisticated enough to model complex organizational structures; the process of defining hierarchies and creating aggregations is time-consuming and cumbersome
  4. Limited analytics capabilities (what-if scenario, forecasting, trending, time-based analysis, etc.)
  5. The ability to perform fast calculations across multiple dimensions is missing
  6. Lack of separation between logical structure and presentation. In other words, it lacks the ability to change grid-like data views (or other kind of external representation) without making changes to the data structure
  7. Lacks power: not robust and quick enough to support large data sets
  8. Multiple versions on multiple computers (controls and security)
  9. Lack of support for enterprise-wide collaboration (workflow, versions)
  10. Difficult to document and time-consuming to maintain as an enterprise platform


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Topics: budgeting, planning, excel

Key indicators to measure the agility in financial planning

Posted by Yana McConaty

NEU Infographics: Key indicators to measure the accuracy and agility in financial planning, budgeting, and forecasting. How Does Your Organization Compare?

Aberdeen Research conducted a survey of over 200 organizations to analyze their financial planning, budgeting, and forecasting practices. According to the results, core metrics that measure accuracy and agility of the financial planning, budgeting and forecasting processes include:

  1. Financial reports delivered on time

  2. Actual costs within budgets

  3. Actual revenues within forecast

How would you rate your organization: Best-in-Class, Average or Laggard?


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Topics: budgeting, forecasting, planning

NEW! Infographic and Technology Brief: Data Visualization

Posted by Yana McConaty

If data dictates our decisions, then why would we allow key information to sit idle simply because it is too hard to reach or too time-consuming to understand or even uncover? More than ever, decision-makers must accelerate how quickly they collect, consume, interpret and analyze data. 

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Topics: interactive, dashboards, implementation, methodology, visualization, dashboarding, reporting, dashboard, metrics, interactive dashboards

Business Analytics for Budget and Finance Professionals

Posted by Yana McConaty

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Topics: Neubrain, Business Analytics, Government Budgeting, Performance-based Budgeting

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