All businesses start with a big, bright Idea. But it is the execution of the idea that distinguishes successful entrepreneurs from the rest. This excellence in execution is only possible if companies invest adequate time and money towards chalking out a strong business plan and strategizing smartly.
PREPARING BUSINESS PLAN
Drawing up a good Business Plan has multiple benefits such as:
- Helps in budgeting and setting targets for your team
- Helps in resource allocations – be it funding, manpower, or technology.
- Helps in setting business goals and objectives & creating strategies to achieve them.
- Helps in tracking your business performance and while undertaking regular reviews, take corrective actions if required.
- During fundraising, a business plan is an essential document that you require; be it Debt or Equity.
While you may know why a business plan is important, you must also know what your business plan should include:
- Executive Summary
- Company Overview
- Products and Services Offering
- Market Analysis and Plan
- Management Team
- Financial Overview
- Specific Milestones & Targets
While the above is a more illustrative list, your business plan needs to be simple, specific, realistic and should be able to provide complete information to the reader. Make the plan document appealing and reader friendly by using graphs, charts, ratios and photographs!
Customizing current business plan:
If you have a basic business plan in place, but feel that your business has evolved into something much larger you might want to consider our services. We would give you a professional review, suggest changes and update it appropriately. We could even solidify it with a detailed financial forecast model and advise on additional content that should be included, considering your target audience for the plan.
Building a new business plan:
If you want to start out strong and stand out from your competitors with a unique business plan we would love to offer our expertise. We begin with a brainstorming session with you and your senior management team. Thereafter, we research everything about your company, your products/services, your industry and your competition to build the foundation of the business plan. We then supplement the plan with detailed financials, including sensitivity scenarios and ratio analysis to ratify various business statements. We also design a version of the financial model for you to track on a regular basis, as your working budget file.
Building a detailed financial model and sensitivity scenarios:
Under this, we prepare a detailed financial model, with options for you to undertake sensitivity testing and based on the same, we design subset models for you to use as your operating budgets.
BUDGETING, FORECASTING, AND SENSITIVITY ANALYSIS
To be a successful player in today’s environment, one has to have a robust budgeting & forecasting system. Following are some of the key benefits from this exercise:
- Knowing your cash flow and other resources requirement.
- Planning and preparing for any contingencies.
- Setting goals and targets for key management personnel.
- Drawing up growth strategy and identifying milestones.
This is a very important function and if you are planning to raise funds (be it bank debt or PE/VC funding or IPO), you need to have a budgeting system that allows you to provide accurate forecasts to your investors and lenders.
This cannot be achieved overnight, and comes only through sound planning and undertaking serious budgeting & variance analysis internally, every month. OBX assists in drawing up a detailed forecast model which starts with an open discussions with all key stakeholders. We then evaluate information currently available on hand and provide the same in comparable format to take informed decision for forecasting purposes. Thereafter we engage with the senior management team in discussing and debating on the numbers to validate all assumptions, after which we build a detailed forecast model. We then undertake a brief research about the company, your products and services, industry benchmarks and competition financials (wherever available) to build a detailed financial model, including sensitivity scenarios and ratio analysis to ratify various business statements.
A business forecast, if done accurately, equips you with the estimate numbers of income and expenditure and also gives you a glimpse into the company’s future.
Drawing up a detailed financial forecast along with sensitivity scenarios and ratio analysis helps in setting targets and establishing milestones for business performance. It also demonstrates what you need to do to achieve your goals and prepares you for any eventuality.
However, if this prediction goes wrong, it could cause severe damage to your organization. If you are not so confident in doing this activity by yourself, you can always seek our guidance.
We also undertake sensitivity analysis to evaluate the company’s funding requirements (under different scenarios). This also helps the company in drawing up a cash flow forecast and in agreeing on Collection and Payables Policy.
Our involvement doesn’t stop there. From thereon, we help the company in implementing the budgeting system and also hand-hold the company’s accounting team with generating monthly variance report for a cycle or two, until they are comfortable generating reports on their own. To simplify the process for the accounting staff we also provide exhaustive templates, with simple data input sheets, wherein they could feed their actual financials from their accounting software and generate detailed management dashboard.