Ventana Research Releases Trends in Integrated Business Planning Benchmark Research
New research finds lack of comprehensive planning is impacting day-to-day performance as well as the ability to react quickly to significant changes in business   

SAN RAMON, October 24, 2012 – Ventana Research has released its latest Benchmark Research, Trends in Integrated Business Planning. Ventana Research undertook this benchmark to build upon their previous research into planning and gain insight into how organizations have advanced business planning across the enterprise.

The new research found that in most companies planning remains a disjointed, immature process. Individual business units or departments create plans with a limited understanding of what others are doing and without considering how their plans will affect others. The only integrated business plan is the annual budget, which is focused on financial control.

Companies need integrated business planning to find ways to succeed and adapt quickly as business conditions change. Only one-fourth of companies (27%) directly link departmental plans to budgets. Those that do are four times more likely to describe their budgets as very accurate compared to those that have summaries or other indirect links. The research also found little improvement in corporate budgeting and planning. One reason is that although four out of five (80%) state it’s important or very important to their company’s performance to have integrated business planning and two out of three have considered making major changes to their planning process. Just 22 percent say they have made major changes in the last two years. Technology plays an important role in enabling integrated business planning. Desktop spreadsheets remain widely used for planning (69% use them) and they are a reason why 42 percent of companies frequently experience a lack of coordination between departments. Due to this lack of coordination, only 23 percent are able to get to underlying details of an issue or opportunity during business review meetings.

“This research confirms that planning across finance and operational areas is still a challenge in most organizations. Too many decisions are uncoordinated and reactive to opportunities and crises, and there’s too little detailed contingency planning,” said Robert Kugel, SVP Research of Ventana Research. “Our research provides best practices and road maps improvement opportunities that will help organizations plan more effectively and move beyond the use of personal spreadsheets onto a connected approach for the entire business.”

Ventana Research will expand on the key findings of this benchmark research during a live webinar on Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 10 am PT. To participate in the webinar, or view it after it has taken place, visit: http://www.ventanaresearch.com/IBPwebinar. Key highlights from the research will also be presented at the Ventana Research Technology Innovation Summit on November 8, 2012. To find out more or register for the summit, go to: http://ww2.ventanaresearch.com/InnovationsSummit.html.

Ventana Research embarked on this research to provide insights into roadblocks and examine sound methodologies in organizations’ efforts to plan and budget more effectively. To do so, we set out to acquire timely, real-world information about how they try to respond to the financial pressures of today’s intensely competitive business environment. Ventana Research thanks those that participated in the benchmark, helping to make this industry benchmark research a reality.

Those interested in learning more about this benchmark research can find additional information in Integrated Business Planning here: www.ventanaresearch.com/IBP. As a part of your registration you will receive insights and education from Ventana Research on using technology effectively in business. Ventana Research provides guidance to organizations in business and IT in information technology through its Ventana On-Demand and with its assessment and educational services offerings.

About Ventana Research
Ventana Research is the most authoritative and respected benchmark business technology research and advisory services firm. We provide insight and expert guidance on mainstream and disruptive technologies through a unique set of research-based offerings including benchmark research and technology evaluation assessments, education workshops and our research and advisory services, Ventana On-Demand. Our unparalleled understanding of the role of technology in optimizing business processes and performance and our best practices guidance are rooted in our rigorous research-based benchmarking of people, processes, information and technology across business and IT functions in every industry. This benchmark research plus our market coverage and in-depth knowledge of hundreds of technology providers means we can deliver education and expertise to our clients to increase the value they derive from technology investments while reducing time, cost and risk.

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To learn how Ventana Research advances the maturity of organizations' use of information and technology through benchmark research, education and advisory services, visit www.ventanaresearch.com.

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