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Jet Budgets Technical FAQ


 

Topics:

General Features and Functionality Compatibility & Integrations

Forecasting

Templates & Copying Budgets

Licensing

Security

Budget Structure & Work Items

Data Entry

Reporting

Integration with NAV/GP/BC

GP-Specific Integration

Jet Analytics OLAP Cubes

Localization & Currencies

 

General Questions

 

What is Jet Budgets?

Jet Budgets is a web-based solution for streamlining and controlling the budget creation and fiscal planning process. Jet Budgets enables collaboration, improves accuracy, and saves time for budget owners at small and medium businesses whose current budgeting process requires managing multiple spreadsheets that can be messy, error prone and time consuming. Jet Budgets is built to integrate with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central, NAV, and GP immediately.

Who was it designed for?  

Jet Budgets was designed for small and medium businesses (SMB) that use Dynamics 365 Business Central, Dynamics NAV or Dynamics GP.  Jet Budgets is the right tool for anyone who creates or is involved in the budgeting process and struggles with reconciling and managing disparate and inconsistent spreadsheets that aren’t governed or controlled. Jet Budgets enables automated assignment workflows, and status visibility to streamline the budgeting process through Jet Hub while utilizing the power of Jet Reports for integrated actual-to-plan reporting in an Excel environment users are already familiar with.

Is Jet Budgets a Corporate Performance Management (CPM) tool?

Jet Budgets was designed to fill a gap in the Dynamics market between costly, complex Corporate Performance Management tools that have many functions most SMB companies don’t need, and the manual budgeting process that involves disorganized Excel spread sheet management. While CPMs are targeted at mid to large-scale enterprises to provide complex financial solutions, Jet Budgets offers the right features and functionality for small to medium businesses without over-complicating the process or solution.

How long will it take to implement the Jet Budgets product?  Many Budget products/CPMs are difficult to implement, can take weeks or months, and require a Professional Services resource and additional costs.

Jet Budgets is a turnkey, out-of-box solution that takes minutes to get up and running, not hours or days.  Additionally, one of the advantages of using Jet Budgets is that configuration does not pose a huge administrative burden on a company nor does it incur large technical resource costs.

Product Features and Functionality

Does the product support spreading? (e.g. Spreading an annual value across budget periods)

Spreading can be done in Excel, not in the web entry, by running a report using Jet Functions to pull actuals, applying a value across budget periods, and then uploading to Jet Budgets.

Can budgets be split/allocated based on another budget figure? For example, use an existing budget as a template and amend by 5%.

This can be done by using the Excel Add-In and the GL function to pull in data from an existing budget.  Excel calculations can then be used for changing the existing numbers.  The budget can then be saved and uploaded back into Jet Budgets.

Does Jet Budgets support seeding in the web entry format?

Many Budget Owners want to provide previous years' numbers with some type of multiplier to make it easy for contributors to provide data for a work item without having to be Excel experts.  A Budget Owner can create a report using the GL function to pull last year's numbers and increase or decrease the forecast by a multiplier as needed.  They can then copy the numbers and paste them into the web entry work item for easy seeding.  They can then assign the work item to a contributor with the data already seeded into the web entry.  If the contributor wants to adjust the numbers, they can do so on-line. While seeding does require a bit of copy and paste, it still saves time.

Does Jet Budgets automatically seed numbers from previous accounting periods?

While Jet Budgets doesn't provide automated seeding from previous years, a Budget Owner can seed a Work Item by pulling data from previous accounting periods into Excel and then making it available to a budget contributor to use for work items.

Does Jet Budgets support non-financial values? 

Non-financial values can be used in the budgeting process (ie: quantities, units, etc.) to help arrive at the financial numbers that are stored in Jet Budgets. This would be handled using entry in Excel and uploaded to Jet Hub.

Does the product support the ability to change drivers/variables in one place and have them automatically update the budget?  Do we plan to support global drivers?

The initial product release will not support driver- based Budgets.  However, this feature is under consideration for a future release.

Does the product support modeling scenarios?

The web tool doesn't currently support this; however, it can be done in Excel.

Can Jet Budgets consolidate budgets for multiple companies?

Budgets for multiple companies can be consolidated by running a Jet Report and using the Jet Functions.

Can I change companies in a budget?

This is a function we don't currently support, but are looking at it for the future. Different companies may have different charts of accounts, which could make this feature problematic.

Where do I see which company I'm working on a budget in for a multi-company set up?

The company a budget is being prepared for is visible by opening the right pane of a budget.  The info in this pane includes the data source, company, date range and dimensions in the budget.

Can budget categories be imported from an Excel file?

Currently Jet Budgets supports accounts, but not account categories.

Does the budget have version history to compare and summarize changes to versions? Where is the version history stored? if a budget is submitted from Excel then how do you see what was changed, when, and by who?

We do track changes and when using the GL(JetBudget) function to drill down on numbers, the users will see all of the actions that make up the budget history for that work item. For example, the number for a work item for a month may be $2000 at the moment, but this could be made up of an initial entry of $1,500, a subsequent one for $1,000 (total of $2,500) and then a reduction of -$500 to arrive at the $2,000. The user would be able to see this "audit" when they drill down.

If there are many items consolidated to a single GL account, can you look backwards to see what work items roll up to that account?

The work item is input into the online entry and then the budget can be opened in Excel.  From Excel, you can drill down into the details. Note that drill down is not possible in Jet Hub.

Where is Jet Budgets data stored?

Budget data is stored in the Jet Service Tier database.

Budget Structure and Work Items

Can columns in the overview be in days/quarters (anything other than months?)

Currently, the overview only supports calendar months. A future release will allow customers to customize the columns.

Can Account structures be sorted alphabetically?

Currently, the account structure can be sorted by account number but not alphabetically.  We will consider this capability for a future release.

Can GL account numbers be collapsed hierarchically so the highest level shows the consolidation of the data input?

This functionality is not currently available in Jet Budgets in Jet Hub.  However, it can be accomplished by creating budget reports in Excel.

How does Jet Budgets handle multiple work items with the same name rolling to the same GL account in the same budget?

Work item names need to be unique.

Can you initially do a top-down budget and then overwrite it with a bottom-up budget?

Jet Budgets is very flexible.  When a work item is created, a budget allocation can be given to represent the top-down approach.  As a user inputs numbers using a bottom-up approach, they can see the impact on the allocation. Collaboration and commenting in the workflow provides transparency among budget owners and contributors so they can go back and forth on the numbers.

Localization & Currencies

What languages is the product localized in?

The product supports our standard localized languages: Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hungarian, Icelandic, Italian, Japanese, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish. The language is picked when the user logs in.  Please note that product names do not get translated.

How does Jet Budgets handle budgets in multiple currencies?

Only single currencies can be imported into the ERP.  If multiple currencies are used in a budget, the user will need to use Excel currency conversion functionality to convert to a single currency.

Forecasting

I need to be able to compare my forecast with actuals. How do I pull actuals into the budget?

Actuals can be pulled into the budget using the Jet functions in Excel.

Can actuals be auto-populated in Jet Budgets?

That capability is not currently in the first release for Jet Budgets, but is under consideration for the future.

Will the product support budgeting plus forecasting?  Is that on the roadmap?

Forecasting is not currently on our roadmap.  We need to understand if this is something our customers would value as it would add complexity to the product that they may not want.

Templates and Copy Budget

Can I copy a template 49 times for each work item?

A work item can be created from a template, the work item can be renamed and the filters can be changed as many times as a user wants.

I don't want to re-invent the wheel every year.  Can I copy and paste the budget from the previous year?

The budget structure from a previous year can indeed be copied. However, in the first release, the numbers are not brought over.

Is there a way to use the same budget template for multiple companies and multiple databases?

Theoretically, this could be done.  However, if the chart of accounts and dimensions are different across the companies, we recommend creating a new structure.

Can you create a template in one budget and use it in another?

At this time, templates are specific to the budget being worked on.

Is it possible to have 3 versions of the same budget without actually creating 3 separate versions that independently need updating throughout the budgeting process?

Currently, the budgets in Jet Budgets are separate and there isn't a way to create a master budget that three separate budgets roll up to.  However, a budget structure could be created with each version of the budget as the top levels of the structure, with separate structures below it.  Of course, a budget can be copied and 2 copies could be created, but that may not address the master budget issue.

Compatibility and Integrations

What Microsoft ERPs does Jet Budgets integrate with?

Jet Budgets was designed to work with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central, Dynamics NAV version 2013 and later, and Dynamics GP version 9 or later.   It does not integrate with AX or the Jet Data Warehouse.

Does Jet Budgets support D365 F&O (Finance and Operations)?  Is this under consideration for a future release?

Jet Budgets does not support D365 F&O. Support for this is not currently on our roadmap.

Will Jet Budgets support AX in the future?

AX support is not currently on the roadmap.

Integration with NAV/GP/Business Central

Does Jet Budgets support uploading budgets into Dynamics 365 Business Central? Dynamics NAV? Dynamics GP?

Yes. Jet Budgets was purpose-built for immediate integration with Dynamics 365 Business Central, NAV and GP. Budget numbers can be written directly back into Dynamics using the native import functionality of each system.

GP Specific Questions

For GP customers can AA categories be used for Budgets?

No, for GP we only budgeting by natural accounts.

Does Jet Budgets support previous period GL balances that can be further analyzed by Analytical Accounting (AA) and then by supplier?

This can be done by using Jet functions to pull the AA data out of GP and place it in the Excel work items for Jet Budgets.

Does Jet Budgets provide variance analysis from the previous year down to the AA level that can be used to develop the new budget?

This can be done by using standard Jet reporting out of AA to pull the numbers and then incorporating them into the Jet Budgets being developed.

Can Jet Budgets capture committed actuals for future budget periods and import them in to GP?  

Budget information can be used in reports by users, even if it's in future periods, through Jet reporting. This is true if reporting directly out of Jet Budgets or if the data from Jet Budgets is then imported back into GP after the budgeting cycle is completed.

Roles/Permissions and Security Questions

Who can see/access Jet Budgets

Before a Jet user can view or create a budget, be added to a budget, or assigned a task, they must first be added to the Jet Service Tier. This task is usually done by the person in charge of administrative tasks for your Jet suite of products, typically someone in the IT department with admin privileges.

Specifically:

  • The organization must be licensed for Jet Budgets
  • The user must have Budgets access:
    • Be a Jet Hub Admin
    • Be a Jet Hub User to whom Create Budget permission has been granted (by an Admin)
    • Be a Jet Hub User who has been added to a Budget by an Admin or Owner

Our IT Administrators have access to everything.  Is there any way we can lock them out of access to support documents that contain confidential info, i.e. payroll?

If someone is an administrator in Jet Hub they can change the budget owner for a budget but do not have the ability to look at the details of the budget work items. Only people who are associated with the work items or the budget owner will have the ability to download and view the supporting documents.

How can budgets be secured?  Particularly if a budget for payroll is being put together and the Finance team doesn’t want anyone else seeing payroll numbers? 

Regarding the securing of numbers, only people associated with work items can see or report on those numbers, so if there was a work item for payroll that had salary info in an Excel file only the approver/contributor/owner could see that. Also, if someone was using GL Jet Budgets to report they can only report on the numbers they are associated with, so somebody not on that work item could not pull the numbers out to drill down and see details.

We have multiple Budget Owners and multiple companies.  How do we assign permissions so they don't see other companies' budgets?

When you're in Jet Hub, you assign the ability for users to create budgets by giving them the Budget Owner permissions. This is done by going to Gear -> Admin -> Permissions -> Budget Owner Add/Remove. Once a user has this permission, they can create a budget and then add other users to that budget.  Budget Owners can only see budgets they have created or that they have been added to by someone else.  A budget user (Budget Contributor) can only see the budgets they have been added to as well.

  

Does a Jet Budgets user need to also be set up as a user in Jet Reports?

Users that are using Jet Budgets will need to be set up in Jet Hub so they can log in and use the tool.  If the Jet Budgets User is also going to be pulling data from the data source to help them with Budgets or run a report, they will need access to that data source.  In many cases, the Budget Owner will provide the user (Budget Contributor) with an Excel file that contains data they will need for their piece of the budget.  In that case, they don't need to have access to the data source.

Do you have to be a Designer to use Jet Budgets and to download a template?

No, you don't have to be a designer but you need to be assigned as a 'User' in Jet Hub.

Can the owner on a budget be changed?

Yes, the owner can be changed.

Once you have selected a budget to open in Excel, how can you change the approver/ contributor?

All role assignments are done in Jet Budgets online. The Approver and Contributor can be changed for work items opened in Excel and assigned to another user as follows:

  • Select the Work Item from the Work Items page in Jet Budgets
  • Click ‘Edit’ at the bottom of the page
  • A window will pop up allowing you to change Contributors and Approvers. You can then ‘Save and Resend’ the Work Item Assignment.

Can there be multiple Budget Owners assigned to the same budget?

No, there can only be one budget owner currently.

Can budget contributors add supporting files?

Only Budget Owners can add attachments to Jet Budgets. Contributors provide data input into their assigned Work Items and those are saved for the Budget Owner to review.  Any additional worksheets in that Excel file will be saved as well; however, the product doesn’t allow Contributors to attach supporting files to their work.

Data Entry

If I input my numbers in Excel, can I change them in the web version?

No, you will have to open Excel and change them there. Currently, there is no way to input data in multiple places such as the web or Excel.

When are inputs locked and unchangeable?  Can I change a number once it has been approved?

Once a work item is approved and submitted, only the Budget Owner can 'Undo Submit', and either open the work item and change the number themselves or send it back to the contributor to change the number.

How can non-financial data get pulled into Jet Budgets for forecasting? Does the tool support budgets by quantities?

In the Budgets tool, non-financial data can be input into Excel and final numbers can be uploaded to the web. The tool is agnostic to monetary vs unit numbers.

Does it support Budgets on something not dimension related?  Can I add my own Budgets dimensions if I'm not using Advanced or Global dimensions in NAV?

Users can use Excel to budget however they want.  However, only numbers associated with dimensions or segments can be saved to Jet Budgets.  Additionally, numbers that aren't associated with dimensions or segments can't be uploaded to NAV or GP because they aren't supported.

Can I input data using O365 Excel? (Excel online)

We don't recommend using Excel on-line as it has limited capability compared to locally stored Excel and does not support Jet Reports nor can it be sent back to Jet Budgets.

Once a work item has been set up and completed, can it be changed (e.g., add or delete an account or department)?

Once a work item has been set up, accounts or departments can be added or deleted.  However, once it's been started nothing can be changed in the structure.

Does Jet Budgets online entry have full Excel functionality?

Much like the difference between Excel and Excel Online, Jet Budgets provides basic Excel functionality. This primarily consists of the following operators: + - * /

Can more than one contributor work on the same budget at the same time?

While individual contributors can have their own work item assignment that rolls into the same GL account, Jet Budgets doesn't currently support having multiple contributors on a single work item.

Does Jet Budgets support using Excel modeling?

Yes, this can be done in Excel and then worked into the Jet Budgets Excel files.  It can be uploaded to Jet Budgets.

Reporting

How is budget data reported?

There are three options for reporting data:

  • Data can be reported out of Jet Budgets using the GL Jet Budgets function.
  • Budget numbers can be written back to Business Central, NAV or GP using the native import functionality of each system.
  • Budgets can be reported out of finance cubes with Jet Analytics.

Is it possible to report against two different budgets?

Yes, you can report against each budget in the same report. In each GL function, the user can specify the budget it should pull data from.

Will sample reports for Jet Budgets be available at release?

Sample budget reports are available in the Resource Library.

Budgets and Jet Analytics OLAP Cubes

Since the Jet Budgets tool resides outside of our ERP, is it possible to use it with other data sources such as the Jet Analytics cubes? Does Jet Budgets work with the Jet Data Warehouse?  

Because you will still be using Excel and pulling data using the Excel add-in, you can use data from the cubes to help seed your budget numbers

For cubes, would data get loaded in the Jet Data Manager from NAV/GP or from the Jet Services database?

We can load from either, but it depends on what customers want to do with the budget numbers.  If they want to import back into NAV/GP/BC, they would get treated as standard GL budget entry transactions and would just flow into their ERP.   If they want to just keep all the data in Jet Budgets for reports they can pull data from the Jet Services database. We hope to have a standard project in cube store for Jet Budgets.

Licensing

What is the licensing agreement for Jet Budgets?  Is it a separate license from Jet Reports?

Whoever is a user in Jet Reports, can use Jet Budgets as long as the customer has purchased the Jet Budgets product. The same users and designers that are in the Jet Reports license will be able to use Jet Budgets.  It won't be a separate per user license.  However, if they aren't Jet users, they would be considered additional users and would need to be added.

 

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