About Planning Maestro
Trusted by more than 10,000 users, Planning Maestro gives your company a better way to plan, budget, and forecast.
Their support team is always available to help you through any questions or difficulties you encounter.
Some of the drivers are a bit tricky to understand.
Filter reviews (51)
Filter reviews (51)
Effective Software to Measure Business Performance
Comments: Planning Maestro is a perfect software for Financial Organizations, large enterprise and companies to evaluate business performance and manage expense. It's a less expensive software related to other competitors. Must Try Once!
It's a very easy to use product that helps you to manage your expense. Software offers many rich features like Asset Management, Budgeting, Expense Tracking, Financial Reporting, etc.
We did not have any problem with the software to manage our expense and measure our performance.
Excellent, Intuitive program
Comments: The implementation of the product was smooth. The reporting capabilities of the program have exceeded my expectations. In addition, every person I've been in contact with at Centage has expert level knowledge of the program and any issues have been resolved immediately.
The best part of this software are the drivers we use to manage our sales budget. We have several LLCs that are within this program. The ability to expand the way we create our budgets has given us greater insight into where we can save money. The elimination of finding "human error" input in an excel budget has alleviated so much time.
I have yet to find anything I don't like about this product.
Budget Maestro is a solid tool, and I'm looking forward to enhanced features and functionality in 9.
I do like the preview of the expense and how it will look like on the P&L. It really helps me make sure that my spread method is correct. I like analytics maestro. I can use excel to build reports. Also, it is easy to use the data to create charts and graphs and make the financial data consumable to those budget owners, who may not have a fiance background. I also like the ability to refresh and update the data quickly.
Reporting. In analytics the idea of building is great, reminds me a salesforce. But it is sooooo slow on the virtual desktop. From what I understand this will continue to be the case in BM9. Also the reporting within the software is slow as well. It takes anywhere from 1-3 minutes to run any report. Also, the inability to create a version and it to show up in all plans. For example, if we want to create version of our 3+9 Forecast
Planning Maestro provides critical budgeting analysis
Comments: Good training, sophisticated calculations, "what-if" projections. Personnel expense calculation can be made as precise as needed. Can create drivers for calculations, and updating the driver updates the related revenue/expense, rather than updating multiple different accounts or line items; i.e. the units are a fixed commodity, but the unit price changes.Unmatched support that helps with any questions or problems.
Can break down budget lines into as sophisticated detail as desired.Support staff are responsive, professional and helpful.
Some features are site-wide rather than attached to a particular budget cycle. Updating these features can inadvertently affect other calculations.
Great product for M&A focused roll-ups and disparate companies
Comments: Very pleased with how it has scaled for us as we grew from 6 locations to 55.
Cloud-based and scalable as we built out the company organically and through M&A
Some of the drivers are a bit tricky to understand.
Good for small companies and simple budgeting
Simple to use, not very complicated. Has all the features needed for small companies and their budget needs.
Although simple to use, features are limited. They have a new web based version that should alleviate many of our limitations but we still have not had that rolled out. We were supposed to have the web based version last year but are still waiting for the roll out. They also are used to smaller companies and over the last few years we have grown dramatically so we have basically out grown the product.
Comments: The product provided a very friendly user interface that was easy to navigate - even for people who did not receive formal training. The reports were clean and easy to follow. Our accounting department who used the program daily to process hundreds of invoices did not have any negative feedback or comments about the use of the software. Although we did not properly utilize the full potential of the product such as budgeting and PO preparation, to know that it exists was something that we will strive to use in the future.
User friendly interface and reports Good drill down to get to source documents
Not easily available on any computer in the office - would prefer a more office friendly product that could be easily transferred from one computer to the next. No "out of the office" capability to use the software. No access of information unless it was taken from the computer that was set up for Maestro. Would prefer a web interface option
Planning Maestro is an effective Tool
Comments: Our implementation went very smoothly and our implementation specialist made sure to go above and beyond making sure I understood how to use every tool. Planning Maestro has allowed our directors to take ownership of their budgets and have the tools available to tailor them to their own needs.
Planning Maestro has many effective tools that allows our department directors to effectively budget their own areas and pull everything together in one cohesive plan. For the most part, it's user friendly and support is always very responsive.
Reporting functionality of Planning Maestro can sometimes be challenging, as well as knowing which filters to select within revenue and driver applications.
Excellent product that my company uses weekly.
I found this product very easy to learn. That said, I am a CPA. Excellent tools for budgeting and forecasting. Very user friendly
We had some problems importing and exporting to excel. It took a while to set this system up and train staff to use it.
Great budgeting & financial reporting tool
Easy to navigate and control access for end users. Quick updating of reports. Lots of options for slicing and dicing of data to meet organizational needs
Need to update each time new codes are added to our accounting system but this is not a material problem.
Powerful, flexible, and reliable budgeting software
Their support team is always available to help you through any questions or difficulties you encounter. The training provided is top notch and thorough and your trainer sets up your financial report formats for you to match your current statements. My trainer is still my primary contact person for help and all I have to do is send him an email. The software itself has enough built-in power and flexibility it can handle all kinds of retail, distribution, or manufacturing scenarios, like for my company it is the need to build up inventory before a selling season and to do this for many different products and different selling seasons. Budget Maestro is capable of generating fairly accurate balance sheets and cash flow statements, in addition to income statements, as it has sections within it devoted to the balance sheet side of forecasting. Combining Link Maestro and Analytics Maestro to Budget Maestro provides the only solution one needs to not only generate a budget or forecast but to then generate all the financial reports, statements, breakdown analysis needed by management. With Budget Maestro I can drive my revenues, expenses, and inventory levels by units, not revenue dollars, which is a lot more accurate for forecasting when dealing with a wide variation of products, product costs and retail prices.
Financial statements and reports utilizing proper accounting format rules can be very hard or impossible to attain by generating them within Budget Maestro. To attain the proper formatting that I am trained in and accustomed to providing to my management team I have to export the reports out to Excel and apply the spacing, headers, underlining, and so on inside Excel. However, now with their recent addition of Analytics Maestro, this issue is gone as Analytics Maestro is an Excel add-on so that you create and format all your needed standard and custom reports inside Excel and use Analytics Maestro to drop in the numbers and data you want in each report or statement.
A small and medium size company budgeting and forecasting solution that can be maintained in house with little or no reliance on consulting or outside services.
In addition to providing robust budgeting, forecasting and integration with their analytics tool, Analytics Maestro, Budget Maestro is a true extension of a company's general ledger into future periods. This is accomplished through the unique software architecture, where every budget item, such as revenue, expense or personnel record creates an entry into a "behind the scenes" budget GL in the right GL accounts, in the correct amounts and the proper accounting period. What this means is, the financial statements you get in this application are always synchronized to the underlying budget. The balance sheet and statement of cash flows will accurately represent the forecasted financial position of the company to the extent of the accuracy of the budget itself. The financial statements and all other reports can be easily generated by users without relying on IT. The software can be directly integrated to popular ERP or accounting software GLs and the Analytics module which is integrated to Budget Maestro can also be integrated to other data sources such as CRM, inventory management, warehouse management, sales reporting data and others. Another feature I like to use is creating multiple versions of the budgets or "what-if" scenarios, each automatically generating a unique set of financial statements and reports, exactly matching that particular version of the budget. You can see how your financial position changes in future periods as you change the budget version. This helps in finalizing a budget that is reasonable and also closely aligned to company goals and plans.
The workflow process in this application lacks in capabilities expected from larger solutions. This is probably not an issue in smaller organizations which to my understanding are the primary customer of this software.
Planning Maestro's analytics capabilities are a key differentiator
We needed a budgeting package that would be (1) easy to learn and use for our end-users, (2) able to automatically integrate with 3rd party general ledgers and (3) provide a powerful set of customizable analytics and reporting tools. Planning Maestro has successfully met all three requirements, and allowed us to provide more accurate budgets/forecasts/reporting with faster turn around.
A common issues I have with multiple software vendors: Enhancements and usability improvements can take a long time to roll out.
Comments: Centage has been great to work with, from implementation to today, they have been a true partner on our budgeting and forecasting journey. I've always been happy to recommend them and their software.
Planning Maestro brought a platform that allowed us to integrate into our existing accounting platform and create a structured environment we could use to refine our budgeting and forecasting process.
I don't have anything negative to say. When I have run into issues with the software I have always reached out to Centage and we have found ways to incorporate what I need into the software.
Excellent experience. Software functions as promised - implementation team & support were great!
Comments: Ease of budgeting at a very detailed level. Provided us with a better understanding of what drives our business from a financial perspective and what the impact might be if we were to change any of those variables.
Ease of use and affordability. The ability to design your budget without having to pay someone to configure the software is priceless. We were also able to implement and complete our budget in less than 2 months. This software allows us to budget continuously using the same data while just updating it for any changes. We budget annually, and re-forecast quarterly. This tool allows us to spend more time analyzing the impacts of the various variables and much less time actually creating the budgets to review. Once it is set up to forecasts into the future and all you have to do is edit for any changes. You can also perform endless 'what if' scenarios to see how potential changes would impact your forecasts.
Wow! I can't really think of any cons to this software. I am sure there are some limitations but for our company this fits the bill perfectly.
Overall solid business performance management software
Comments: Solid business performance management software package.
1. Very powerful forecasting tool that can handle both simple and complex aspects of forecasting. Handles multiple departments, entities, and the consolidation of them with ease. 2. Very easy to import actual data in order to perform variance analysis. 3. Easy to import almost all information necessary to set up a "plan" the first time. 4. What-if analysis allows you to look at the financial impact of making changes in your business without having to change your primary "plan" 5. All reports can be exported to Excel 6. Report layouts can be customized. 7. Very easy to create a 5 year forecast that allows increase/decrease assumptions to be customized in numerous ways, and using as many timeframes as desired. 8. Handles lines of credit and term loans, both fixed and variable rate, very easily.
1. Can't run a statement of cash flows based on "actual" data, only on "plan" data. 2. Not very easy to run a "plan" balance sheet for a future year as a stand-alone report, must either start the report on a month just after you have "actual" data or create an "actual/plan" version that houses a combination of data so it can be used for beginning balances. 3. If using Desktop version, additional modules need to be purchased to handle pre-paid insurance automatically and forecast inventory.
Overall a good, easy to use product. Eliminates the need to budget in Excel.
Comments: The elimination of Excel spreadsheets. A better structure to the data collection and processing.
A windows based product that is easy to learn and use. Can quickly create multiple Versions within a Plan and What-if scenarios. Can quickly import actual data from our ERP system and take the actual, budget, and forecasted data into Excel for custom financial reporting and analysis.
The structure that is in place for customer support. We have been using BM for about 4 years. When we need support it's an urgent need, we need an answer promptly. The current structure of sending an email to get on the support staff's calendar for a call is too slow. Prefer to call, get in the cue, and get an answer immediately.
Centage has been a key partner in our company's financial reporting capabilites.
Comments: Centage has been a good partner for RSC as we continue to grow reducing manual work and possibility of errors through their platform we utilize for Scenario Reporting and our Annual Budget Process.
Centage provides strong customer service and the product has been terrific value for our organization.
Our group has not transitioned over to the new Cloud Based program with Centage as of yet, so we experience limitations on uploading a large amount of data for various dimensional reporting.
Satified Budget Maestro user
It is a good alternative to using excel spreadsheets. It's much easier to get reporting done when you have a number of departments and want to report as a total or individual departments. Uploading the information from our accounting software is easy to do. The vendor is helpful whenever we have problems. They can resolve most of our issues pretty quickly. We mostly use it for comparing P&Ls actual to budget and departmental reporting. In the past, we used Excel, like many companies, and found it was very easy to have errors. This is much more accurate. It allows us to break personnel, expenses, and revenue down several levels and also to roll it up.
We are still using an older version because there is one particular report that we like that has not been able to duplicated to our satisfaction on the newer version. The company has been through several refinements of the product but has still not been able to duplicate the report.
Comments: Too business support management even when someone lacks with a bit in attention to detail allowing for easy corrections and edits
Gets the job done and has changed how we handle our budget and how we look at budgeting. Little to no consultation with a robust budgeting, forecasting and integration with their analytics tool, Analytics Maestro, Budget Maestro.
Deoendi on company size workflow process is lacking. Some forecasting issues of budget and balance but creating and actual plan minimises the issue.
Maybe a good long term solution
Comments: After the system is all set up, including the financial presentation, which you have to drag account by account manually to make sure it shows up where you want, system starts to become useful.
Eliminates the use of excel spreadsheets and circulation formula errors when dealing with multiple companies or consolidation.
difficult to set up for the first time. Very limited when you have to export to Excel because all data is exported as text format.
I was really impressed with the Budget Maestro demonstrations; their keen interest in understanding how our business model was structured and working through the benefits and challenges of acquiring the solution, before we even talked price. I was very attracted to the fundamental methodology and flexibility of the system to handle my requirements for budge - actual and forecast reporting. Also impressive is their what-if scenarios, the robust capabilities of their driver functionality, and Analytics Maestro (their Excel plug-in for user friendly desktop reporting). Initially our moderately complex business model created some database latency issues, but Centage took it on board and worked through it. They ended up making significant changes on the server side, and performance is now far better.
They are one star short of five because at some point they abandoned their segmented GL functionality. This has resulted in using a single entity field to handle location, function, and department. Our resulting entity schema is extremely confusing to end users, increases administrative overhead, and complicates the slice and dice capability that would come by handling separate GL segments.
Budget Maestro Review from Dakota Electric Association
Comments: I would recommend budget maestro to other organizations as a useful budgeting tool. It would be important for any organization to analyze their data and structure requirements prior to selecting the budgeting tool which would best complement their data needs.
Budget Maestro is a user friendly budgeting tool with some helpful budgeting features including benchmarking, spreading mechanisms, and ease of use. Support from Centage has been good in terms of timeliness of responses and problem solving over the past 5 years. Overall it has been widely accepted within our organization and has helped improve the efficiency and accuracy of our budget process at DEA.
Calculating data at times can be slow due to multiple users in the system at the same time. We have also experienced some space issues as the number of budgets and versions have grown. We would also like to see more reporting flexibility regarding layouts for sizing columns and overall appearance.
Know what you are getting into
We were Maestro's experiment to have virtual training. We were connected through phone and an equivalent of Go-To-Meeting. The instructor was friendly, patient and very knowledgeable about the product. It wasn't until the 4th day in training until we got a glimpse of the capabilities Budget Maestro could do for us. After a few frustrating months of trying to get Budget Maestro going for us they did reach out to us throughout the process and solve our predicament to the best of their abilities. Very good customer service!
From the beginning on, we explained explicitly how complex our business and budget was. We were assured our budget would be 70-80% finished by the time training was over. It was not. Perhaps it was a mis-communication between both parties as i was under the impression all drivers would be built and we would be ready to go, either way, Budget Maestro does want us to succeed and are hoping the new upgrade will be more friendly to our needs. I can't wait to get started and get a real feel for this product.
Budget Maestro Review
Comments: 4.5 out of 5 stars. Cant wait to try Planning Maestro!!!!
Budget Maestro is extremely useful in budgeting in forecasting because it allows the user to provide inputs on so many different levels, and this information rolls out through the budget to the correct line items. Adding costs or revenues is easy, and being able to drill down into details to find answers has been priceless. Importing values for the budget also saves a TON of time! This program is AWESOME!
With any program that is going to provide so much detail, there is a great amount of set up time to ensure accounts and other items are set up properly. Once this is complete, its just a matter of learning the program to meet your needs. Training time will have to be considered, but I think it is worth the time and the money.