An automated financial forecasting system

A financial forecast is a management tool for predicting the future needs of a company. By looking at the contracts a company has been awarded and the costs accrued in fulfilling these contracts, management can predict what the future costs might be. Based on this information, decisions can be made about the future space requirements, the size of the workforce, and the inventory which will be needed. This project's goal was to change a division's forecasting procedure from a paper and pencil operation to a computerized process, and then to train people to use the new method. A data base was structured and programs were written to allow data to be input, updated, and output. All data files were organized according to a particular worksheet format. Once data was in the computer, it needed to be consolidated into various total worksheets and then into summary and grand total worksheets. Programs were written to accomplish these functions. The business staff was trained to use these consolidation programs. Once all functions were computerized, the people who originate the data in project areas needed to be trained to enter their own data into the computer. Training materials were written, demonstrations were held, and individualized help was given. Learning to use the computer as a new tool turned out to be an exciting and rewarding challenge to the users.