Forecasting in a consolidated group

How Fathom forecasts and consolidated groups interact with one another

Updated over a week ago


How can I create a consolidated forecast in Fathom?

There are two main options for forecasting for a consolidated group in Fathom. You can:

  1. Forecast only at the consolidated group level. The group's forecast will not interact with the forecasts of the underlying companies of the group. You are simply forecasting for the consolidated group as you would any other company.


  2. Use the ‘Link to Budget’ option in the consolidated group’s forecast to bring the underlying companies’ forecasts into the consolidated group. This requires creating forecasts in each underlying company and saving each underlying company’s forecast as the budget for the underlying company.

Option 1 - Forecasting at the consolidated level

If you want to simply forecast at the consolidated group level, then you can create a forecast like you would for any underlying company.

You will have full functionality at the group level and are able to set value rules, timing profiles and all other settings options on the consolidated Chart of Accounts. The Chart of Accounts will display according to how it is set up in the consolidated group’s Settings ‘Step 3 - Chart of Accounts’.

You can then generate microforecasts and scenarios based on the consolidated group forecast numbers.

To get started with forecasting, please see our ‘Getting Started with Fathom Forecasting’ article.

Option 2 - Bringing the underlying forecasts into the group forecast

You can consolidate the forecasts of the underlying companies and bring them into the consolidated group’s forecasting tool.

To bring the underlying company forecasts into the consolidated forecast,

  1. Go to each underlying company and save the forecast as the budget for the underlying company

  2. Update the consolidated group. The budgets of the underlying companies will automatically roll-up to be the consolidated group’s budget.

  3. Use the ‘Link to Budget’ value rule or forecast onboarding option to bring the consolidated group’s budget into the Profit & Loss forecast for the group.

By linking the consolidated group’s forecast to the budget, you can bring the combined Profit & Loss figures from the underlying forecasts into the consolidated group's forecast.

📝Note: The Balance Sheet amounts for the group’s forecast will not be brought in with the ‘Link to Budget’ option. Only the Profit & Loss amounts will be brought in from the underlying companies. The Balance Sheet for the group is forecast according to the timing profiles, journals, and schedules set up in the consolidated group’s forecast. This also applies to Balance Sheet derived Profit & Loss accounts, such as depreciation and interest accounts, as they are forecast according to schedules and/or journals.

Consolidated forecast does not match underlying forecasts

If you have gone through the steps for Option 2 and your consolidated forecast does not reflect the forecast values of your underlying companies, then check the following:

  1. The timing profiles, schedules, and journals in the consolidated forecast

    1. Using the 'Link to Budget' option for the consolidated forecast only brings in the budget values for the Profit & Loss accounts. Any timing profiles, schedules, and journals set up in the underlying forecasts must be re-created in the consolidated forecast to ensure the Balance Sheet amounts reflect the underlying companies' forecasts.

      💡Pro Tip: Downloading the Forecast Value Audit Report for the consolidated group and the underlying companies makes it easier to identify differences in timing profiles, journals, and schedules.

  2. The Global Forecast Settings for the consolidated forecast

    1. Residual Drawdown - Ensure the residual drawdown timeline for the consolidated group matches the underlying companies.

    2. Account Linkages - Check that the main accounts in the consolidated forecast (e.g. main revenue, main AR, etc.) match the underlying companies.

      📝Note: If you have changed any account linkages for specific accounts on the Profit & Loss (not the main account linkages) in an underlying company, then those will need to be changed in the consolidated group as well.

    3. Tax Settings - Any taxes set up in the underlying companies will not be brought into the consolidated forecast. Check the taxes set up in the consolidated forecast to ensure they are set up as expected.

  3. The correct version of the forecast has been saved as the budget

    1. You are able to save the main forecast or any scenario as the budget for an underlying company. Ensure you have saved the correct version of the forecast as the budget.

    2. Check that microforecasts you expect to be on or off are turned on or off before saving the budget as the forecast.

  4. The underlying companies' saved budgets date ranges and 'Rolling from' dates align with the consolidated forecast.

    1. Check the underlying companies' budgets to ensure the budget date ranges match the consolidated forecast.

    2. Because the forecast rolls forward each month with updated financial data, you'll need to re-save the forecast as the budget each month to ensure the underlying company forecasts match the consolidated forecast.

  5. If you have updated the underlying forecasts, re-save the forecasts as the budgets

    1. When you save a forecast as the budget for a company, Fathom takes a snapshot of the forecast to use as the budget. If you make updates to the forecast (e.g. changing value rules, the timing of microforecasts, etc.), the budget will not automatically update with those changes. Instead, the forecast must be re-saved as the budget.

  6. If you have re-created microforecasts in the consolidated group to match those in the underlying companies, check that their timing on the Business Roadmap matches the microforecasts in the underlying companies.

    📝Note: This is only if you have chosen to re-create microforecasts in the consolidated group to be able to track and change their timing in the group. If you have created microforecasts in the underlying entities and they are turned on when saving the forecast as the budget, those P&L values for the microforecasts will be brought into the group's forecast with the 'Link to Budget' option.

  7. Ensure you have not forecasted on accounts in the underlying companies that you eliminated in the consolidated group

    1. You may have value rules and microforecasts set up on accounts in underlying companies. If you have eliminated these accounts in the consolidated group, then the accounts, and their values, will be eliminated in the consolidated forecast as well.

Reporting on the consolidated forecast

Reports for a consolidated group will have the same forecast reporting options as an underlying company has for reporting on its forecast.

It is not possible to report on the forecast figures for a specific underlying company within the consolidated group report. You are only able to report on actuals or historical financial data for a specific underlying company in a consolidated group report.

For more detailed information, please see:

Additional knowledge & common questions

▶️ Want a general overview of the forecasting tool? Watch our Forecasting Overview video (19 min).

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