Spreadsheet Skills for Planning, Forecasting & Budgeting PetroTech

Course details

Planning, Forecasting & Budgeting are 3 of the most important functions in business. Performed properly they can lead to exceptional success. Yet many people do not use the tools available to them to their best advantage. In this course we will leverage the power of Excel  to demonstrate how to improve your forecasting, planning and budgeting. By developing better spreadsheets & models, planning is more accurate, forecasting is more precise & budgeting is more attainable. And the time to develop these is dramatically reduced.

Forecasts, plans and budgets may be improved through extensive what-if analysis to find key factors for management to monitor. Furthermore, these tools can be easily transferred into business plans which provide the guide to the overall performance of the firm.

Techniques you will master include:

  • goal seek
  • scenario manager
  • sensitivity analysis
  • solver
  • decision models

The course's usefulness is enhanced by the fact that it is designed to apply to both Excel  '03 & '07 - to enable you to use it more effectively.

The course demonstrates every technique discussed using Excel  templates that will be provided all delegates so bring your laptop to optimize the experience.

The Goals

On completion of this course delegates will be able to:

  • Fully understand the various Excel  tools available to perform planning, forecasting & budgeting
  • Perform sophisticated "what-if" scenarios to improve decision making
  • Know what Excel  techniques to use in a given situation
  • Properly use some of the most advanced spreadsheet techniques
  • Know when to take a chance & when not to
  • Learn to use & expand a range of Excel  models (provided)

The Process

The training comprises teaching sessions covering each topic area with the theory blended with practical application. Additionally, real world examples & case studies will be used so that the Delegates will be able to apply these techniques immediately. Delegates will use the provided Excel  templates to apply their new knowledge case studies to reinforce the concepts.

The Benefits

The organization will benefit by:

  • Having Experts in-house to develop advanced decision support models
  • Increased productivity of personnel involved in planning, forecasting & budgeting
  • Improved performance of plans developed into budgets
  • Better ways to plan & measure results of forecasts
  • Realizing better options when facing forecasting choices
  • Better integration between functional areas leading to better decisions

The Results

The delegate will benefit by:

  • Developing an improved understanding of how well prepared Excel  models benefit the corporate in today's challenging world.
  • Really understanding the risks & rewards of various planning decisions
  • Being able to calculate the impact of alternative inputs on critical outputs
  • Understanding to cost/benefit of every decision
  • Enhancing their knowledge with the use of the models in the case studies
  • Significantly increasing their Excel  analysis skills

The Programme Content

Day One

Introduction to Spreadsheets using Excel 

  • Worksheet fundamentals
  • Using the F4 key for Relative & Absolute cell references
  • Expose ALL formulas in a worksheet using the built in function for faster review
  • Naming cells & ranges for quicker, more accurate work
  • Freeze panes, columns & rows for easier viewing while scrolling
  • Protecting cells & ranges to stabilize models
  • Function wizard benefits
  • Linking cells from various worksheets to reduce errors
  • Secret key board shortcuts
  • Case study: create, build & protect a reusable template

Day Two

Proper Planning

Introduction to planning

What-if analysis

  • scenario analysis techniques
  • sensitivity analysis using spinners & scroll bars

Economic Order Quantity (EOQ)

Build out Data tables to see an entire range of options

1-way Data tables

2-way Data tables

Maximizing vs. optimizing techniques

Utilizing The Goal Seek command to calculate a reverse equation

Using Solver to calculate optimal product mix, distribution problems & capital budgeting

Case study & template for using Solver to plan the Optimal product mix

Day Three

Fantastic Forecasting

What is forecasting?

Qualitative techniques & their uses

Quantitative techniques & their uses

  • Smoothing techniques
  • Regression analysis
  • Time series analysis

Forecasting growth rates for verification

Internal (IGR)

Sustainable (SGR)

MIN and MAX functions


GEOMEAN to calculate Average Growth Rate (AGR)


Case study & template: Use the GEOMEAN function to calculate your AGR

Day Four

Beyond Budgeting

What is a budget?

How to build a simple budget

Build a Flexible Budget Model

Build out a complete budget

  • Operating budget elements
  • Financial budget elements
  • Linking them

What is the Variance Analysis report & why is it important to improve your budget

Calculating variance analysis to see what must be changed

Case study & template: Build a complete budget

Day Five

Putting it together - building the comprehensive model

  • Build your planning model
  • Build your forecasting model
  • Build your budgeting model
  • Link these together
  • Leverage optimization through capital structure (Case study Example)
  • Bond buybacks (Case study Example)

Course Location

About PetroTech


The adage that “knowledge” is power holds very true in this industry. In order to maximize results we are constantly updating and upgrading ourselves. This commitment to ongoing skills development is one of the reasons we are success, the belief that there is a “better way to do things” is what motivates us each and every day. By aligning with us you are going to benefit from our years of expertise in real world scenarios. Classroom learning is great but there is no substitute to real world experience which is what we are bringing to the table.


Billionaire investor Warren Buffett said “price is what you pay but quality is what you get” and that expression is very true. With use we understand that your time is very valuable and you only want the best and most current industry related knowledge which is what we bring to the table.  Instead of giving you massive amounts of inaccurate or outdated information you get precisely what you want, the most current knowledge so you can make truly informed decisions that will directly impact productivity and your bottom line. When results are what you are looking for then the choice is clear, we are your partners in success.


Technology has revolutionized the way knowledge is disseminated in throughout the world, what use to take months or even years to reach the masses can be done in a few hours ! In order to remain relevant and viable we need to embrace innovations. The challenge with innovation is knowing when to implement it and what type of return you can expect from it. Instead of risking your time and resources we have the answers for you, Since we are at the vanguard of the industry whenever there is a fruitful innovation we will be there providing you with the information needed to make the right decision.


We understand you may have unique need so we provide a tailored made (bespoke for our U.K. friends) approach that will address your questions in the most conducive manner possible.  Respect to us means putting your interests, your needs at the forefront of our mind. You will see how genuine we are and that you not just “some customer” you are our partner in success just as much as we are your partner in success. We firmly believe in the “golden rule”, treat others with graciousness, courtesy and respect.  Come experience the difference that quality and respect makes and you will truly be amazed.

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