Introduction to budgets

Budgets are extremely useful for estimating the future financial performance of the business. You can use a budget to set a plan for the future, and compare current results against budget for performance measurement. 

We highly recommend importing a budget for each company in Fathom to get the most insight into your business performance.

You are able to import an external budget from your source accounting system into Fathom. This includes:

You can also choose to import a budget via Excel at any time. This is useful if you use other forecasting tools for creating your budgets, or if you are importing your financial data from Excel, QuickBooks Desktop, or MYOB AccountRight.

Using your budgets in Fathom

You can use budgets in a number of different ways within Fathom.

Easily set targets for financial KPIs

In 'Step 5 - Targets' of the company settings, Fathom allows you to set targets for your KPIs. If you have any active default KPIs (ie. KPIs that draw data from the P&L or Balance Sheet), you can choose to automatically use your imported budget figures as targets.

You can do this by ensuring the green 'tick' is activated, under the column 'Use Budgets.

Perform 'Budget vs Actual' variance analysis

Importing a budget allows you to compare your actual results against your budget figures. Some examples of where you can use this within Fathom include (but are not limited to):

Perform forward projections

Combine your actual and budget results to create a projection of the entire financial year. This is available for:


Can I create a budget within Fathom?

Yes, you can create a budget for your company with our forecasting tool. You can save your main forecast or a forecast scenario as your company's budget in Fathom.

To learn more about saving a forecast as a budget, our 'Can I save my forecast as a budget?' article.

To learn more about our forecasting tool in general, please see this article. You can also watch our forecasting webinars for Businesses and Accountants using the links below.

Forecasting for Businesses

Forecasting for Accountants

How many budgets can I import?

You can only have a single budget imported for a company in Fathom at any given time. 

Can I import a budget for a division/tracking category/class/job?

Budgets can only be imported for individual entities in Fathom. 

If you wish to add a budget for a division, you will first need to import the division as a standalone entity in Fathom. Note that this would then be considered as a separate entity for billing purposes.

More information on this process is in the following help article: Adding Budgets for Divisions.

Can I import a budget for a consolidated group?

Right now, you're not able to directly import a budget for the consolidated group.

Fathom will automatically 'roll up' the budgets of each underlying entity within the group. This will then will be available to use in the consolidated group.

If you wish to apply a budget directly to the consolidated group, a workaround would be to import that budget directly for an underlying company, and remove budgets for any other underlying companies. This budget will then flow through into the consolidation.

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