Building your farm business's annual plan simply

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Building your farm business's annual plan simply
By Dina Veljanovska

Building your farm’s annual plan in Figured is a simple process. You can use your actual bank balance and past transactions sitting in your Xero account as a starting point for how you want the next year to go. With the Rolling Plan, any forecasts you've put in will carry over to the next year if you need.

When you're working within your farm, there are two financial "views" available:

  • Actuals: Actuals are what's actually happened, either on the farm (like a stock movement) or in your Xero account (like an electricity bill paid). Selecting actuals will only display actual movements
  • Actuals + forecast: An actual + forecast view lets you view actuals up to a certain point, with the remainder of your year coming from your forecasts. Forecasts are Figured only - they represent your plan, what's to come next. Your A+F view can be set to actuals to none, or actuals to a certain month

We recommend that to build your plan, your global date selector is set to Actuals + forecasts with actuals to Last month, as your conversion balances will be there and last month should always be the most up to date view.

Your annual plan will come together with 3 steps:

  1. Working in your planning grid
  2. Working in your production trackers
  3. Approving the plan (or take a snapshot if you've already approved your plan on the farm)

Working in the planning grid

The planning grid is a 12 month table view of all of your accounts that sit within your Xero chart of accounts. To build your plan in the planning grid, all you need to do is enter values into the grid and it'll auto save as you go along.

Wanting to add transactions with a bit more detail? Check out our article on using detailed transactions.

Then, set up the interest on overdraft calculator to automate the monthly interest payments that go into your plan as your actuals and forecasts happen.

Working in the production trackers

Production trackers are where you keep track of and record production movements - that could be recording milk production, adding a livestock sale, or planning a crop harvest.

For any type of production you want to track, you'll need to set up a production tracker. The trackers share common elements between them, but also have different setups and options available depending on how you'd like to use them.

Check out the collections below on how to best setup and use your trackers:

Approving the plan

With your numbers in, it's time to approve your plan in the planning grid.

Hit approve plan, give your plan a name, and set the actuals to selector. The first snapshot you ever take for a year will always be marked as your annual plan.

Your plan has been built, you can now move onto running reports, re-forecasting, or other fun farm financial activities.

Get started

You can try out our functionality - today. 

Want to get started on aligning your long term goals with your financial situation? Check out this webinar series on scenario planning and building out your plan to get started.

For a real life example of a farmer that has benefited from undertaking this planning, check out this blog.