18 Jun Cash Flow Forecast – Critical for a Growing Business
Cash Flow Forecast Template – Free download
We have built a 13 week rolling cash flow forecast template that you can download for free. Our cash flow forecast tool has been downloaded thousands of times and we have received rave reviews from companies who use it and other cash flow experts. The forecast tool is free to download, use and modify to fit your company’s situation (and you can call us with any questions).
Cash Flow Forecast Strategy
We believe you should update your cash flow forecast on a weekly basis. Our cash flow tool (download link above) is set up to forecast the weekly cash flow needed to run your business.
Other models you may find on the Internet are set up as monthly forecasts. Monthly forecasting may be great for a business plan, but not for running a fast growing business. We designed our 13 week cash flow forecast because we weren’t able to find an easy to use tool that would allow you to look at your business quarter by quarter (13 weeks at a time).
Users who use our model template have said that once they became proficient at using it, they don’t stop, even when sales plateau or they build a good amount of safety cash, they rely on our cash flow forecast to run their business.
Our cash flow forecast template is easy to use. Simply start with a list of all your cash outlays (expenses) and the week they are due. For example, payroll may come due every other week. Enter these figures into the forecast tool to see the amount of cash required on a weekly basis. Create a list of all your projected cash inflow and enter those into the forecast tool. Each week, reconcile the incoming cash with the projections, then reconcile the outgoing cash with what actually went out. Once you have done this, you will have a very accurate picture of your cash flow situation. The most current week will have the highest degree of accuracy and the tool will help you anticipate cash shortages in time to find remedies.
What kind of business should use a cash flow forecast?
- Any business that is outrunning their cash
- Businesses that have experienced uneven historical financial performance
- Fast growing businesses
- Seasonal businesses that need more cash during busy months and have less cash in slow months
- Businesses to business companies like oil and gas service companies, construction companies and government contractors, or others in industries with longer business cycles and payment streams
Five reasons to use a cash flow forecast
- Using a cash flow forecast will let you be proactive rather than reactive when managing your cash.
- Owners are always the last to get paid. Cash flow forecast projections will help owners better manage the draws they are able to take, and sleep at night better.
- Your company will be better able to take prompt payment discounts and make forward buying decisions.
- Lenders love to see a business that is forecasting their cash flow. It is a sign of strong management.
- When you consistently use a cash flow forecast you find yourself being more successful and less stressed.
How to calculate your accounts receivable turn (days sales outstanding)
One important key performance indicator you should always know when setting up a cash flow forecast is what your accounts receivable turnover is in days. To calculate this figure, first determine what your average daily sales are. Divide the total credit sales for the previous month by 30 to determine this figure.
For example, if you had credit sales of $100,000 in the prior month, your average daily credit sales for 30 days total $3,333. If current A/R is $150,000, divide that number by $3,333. The result is 45, which is your A/R turnover in days. This is also known as days sales outstanding (DSO).
Easy cash flow forecasting anyone can do
Preparing your cash flow forecast should not be thought of as busy work. It takes a little time to learn the process. We at Business Finance Solutions have been working clients coaching them on setting up their cash flow templates, making weekly adjustments to the forecast, and making strategic decisions based on cash flow since 2007.
A great source of information on cash flow management can be found in Philip Campbell’s book, “Never Run Out of Cash, which can be purchased on Amazon.
We offer anyone who wants to use our forecast a free online live tutorial on using the forecast. If you would like ongoing assistance to learn how to make strategic decisions based on the forecast, we offer inexpensive one on one consulting. For more information, please complete our online form, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us at: 512-990-8756.
Cash Flow Forecast Template 13 weeks – (Click here for your free download)