A better way to forecast your business finances

By
on
Apr 8, 2021

Yes, there is a way to forecast your business finances with more speed AND accuracy. It doesn’t have to be a compromise.

Do you know what your profit is likely to be 6 months from now? How about your projected cash flow in 12 months? Do you feel confident in your answers?

Every business owner needs this vital information, yet it can be annoyingly difficult to figure out. Take for example this statistic from Quickbooks - 44% of SMBs who experienced cash flow issues said the problems were a surprise.

The problem most business leaders face with forecasting finances is the tradeoff between speed and accuracy: either spend the time to analyse the data properly and risk making a late move, or go with estimates and risk making the wrong move.

Or option 3 - go with your gut.

We recently surveyed 500 small businesses and found that 61% are creating financial forecasts once a week or more, and their most essential concerns when going through the forecasting process were: 

  1. To minimize the amount of time it took to generate the forecast (speed)
  2. To reduce the likelihood that the forecast was off by a moderate degree of accuracy (quality)

Quality forecasts are needed faster than any analyst can produce them. They've gone from being a once-a-month obligation to a continuous weekly necessity.

So, is there a way to forecast business finances fast enough AND accurately enough to keep up with the pace of change in 2021?

The answer, we’re happy to say, is yes.

AI-powered forecasts are at least 50% more accurate and 100 times faster 

AI predictive models hold the answer (don’t freak out).

Why?  

Because compared to humans, AI predictive models:

  • Are better at identifying patterns in the data
  • Can analyse large amounts of data in seconds
  • Continuously improve in accuracy, creating a robust, self-learning system

Basically, AI predictive technology makes reliable, continuous forecasting a reality. And that is an enormous advantage to any business.

However, most businesses can’t access this technology because it requires specialist skills and substantial resources. But we’ve made it easy for anyone to use. No coding needed.

giniPredict: AI-powered forecasts for non-tech people

giniPredict uses AI predictive models to do the work for you, analysing your historical data and running reliable forecasts that reflect the seasonality in your data, giving you a clearer view of the road ahead.

In other words, giniPredict makes running reliable data predictions easy. 

And fast. 

Here’s how it works: First get your data in order, then try our AI-powered financial dashboard, and if you’re someone who runs a lot of forecasts, you’ll love our AI-powered forecasting add-on, too.

Step 1: Get your business finance data in order

For a proper forecast on your business finances, you’ll need to have your income, operating expenses, cost of sales and net profit data for the last few years organised.

Our AI predictive models are robust to missing data, but only to a certain extent.

This is the part that can take the most time, and usually involves consolidating spreadsheets from numerous departments and software systems (and a considerable amount of cursing).

We highly recommend – for the sake of your sanity – automating the work with accounting software like Xero. All your financial data in one place, simplified, easy, done.

Step 2: Get forecasts on your Xero data with the giniPredict Financial Dashboard

The giniPredict Financial Dashboard generates an AI-powered forecast on your business finances as soon as you connect to Xero. 

You get a baseline prediction for your income, expenses and profit, with a 95% confidence interval for guidance.

The data syncs automatically every 12 hours and is refreshed in a click, so you don’t have to worry about outdated forecasts again.

Plus, the more you use it, the more the models learn from your data, and the more accurate the forecast becomes.


To get a reliable forecast, you’ll need to have these reports in Xero, going back at least 3 years:

  • Total income
  • Operating expenses
  • Net profit
  • Cost of sales (optional)

The dashboard also performs key driver analysis for you, and gives you clarity on the true profitability of your business at a glance. 

To get started, simply log into Google > open our dashboard template (link to dashboard landing page) > follow the instructions to authorise Xero and Google Data Studio > and voila! AI-powered insights for your data will be populated in a new dashboard before your very eyes.

Get your Xero financial dashboard in under 5 minutes for free

Step 3: Run your own AI-powered forecasts with the giniPredict add-on

If you want to run further forecasts and scenarios on your Xero data, or any other time series data, the giniPredict Google Sheet add-on makes it easy. 

You’ll get AI-powered forecasts in a few clicks, saving you hours, so you can dive straight into analysing and testing decisions.

You can either import business finance data directly from Xero, or paste in any quantitative time series data to run forecasts on, such as web traffic, ad performance, user growth, and much more.

Run forecasts on any variable in a few clicks.

You’ll get a 6 to 12-month forecast reflecting the seasonality in your data, with a 95% confidence interval.

Run scenarios to see potential outcomes

Once you’ve run a forecast, you can change any of the predicted data and run scenarios to see the potential impact of a spike in demand, losing a major customer, a late payment, hiring a new employee, or any decision you need to test.

When running forecasts, bear these principles in mind:

  • The further into the future you forecast, the less accurate it will be.
  • The more data you give it, the more the model learns, the more accurate the forecast.
  • The higher the quality of your data, the more accurate the forecast.

To get started, first install the add-on (Link to GWM)> open a new Google Sheet > go to “Add-ons” and “giniPredict” > follow the instructions to connect to Xero or paste in and format your own data.

Start running your own forecasts for free

Quicker, easier and more accurate forecasts for your business finances 

To sum up, giniPredict makes it possible for anyone to forecast their business finances faster, so they can make quick, confident decisions and navigate fast-changing environments with speed.

Here’s a nifty little summary of why giniPredict is better than manual forecasting in a spreadsheet or advanced forecasting in Python: 

Oh, and did we mention it’s free?

Yes, it’s free.

Go on, take it for a spin and see the difference it makes.


Contact us
Case study

A better way to forecast your business finances

Case study

A better way to forecast your business finances

The results
A major international bank found gini to be the most efficient data enrichment provider for its digital banking upgrade initiative.

In a pilot project with gini, the bank ran 50,000 transactions through our data enrichment engine.  Within 72 hours, gini had enriched 95.7% credit card transactions and 92.7% EPS transactions. 

“We were surprised just how fast gini’s enrichment capabilities are. What we expected to take 3 weeks took them only 3 days,” said the bank’s Head of Innovation and Strategy. “On top of that, they even enriched EPS transactions, which no other provider has achieved.”
Credit card
transactions enriched
EPS
transactions enriched
The results
gini introduced a successful Savings Goal feature in our PFM app that was adopted by 60% of users within 30 days of launching.
 
Our users engage with the Savings Goal feature an average of 7.4 times a month, which when compared to the once-a-month engagement of most banking apps, is a testament to its value. 

And the reviews were overwhelmingly positive, with comments such as, “Congrats on the release of the saving function, it’s very helpful and motivates me to save more!” and “Makes saving and budgeting a lot easier.”

Makes saving and budgeting a lot easier.
The challenge
Our research showed that users wanted a savings feature that automates their budgeting calculations, and shows how much they have left to spend after putting their savings aside every month.

However, no PFM apps in Hong Kong had a feature like this because it requires complicated algorithms and enriched transaction data. Without merchant names for example, it’s difficult to label recurring transactions accurately, and give the user a clear, comprehensive overview of their finances.

The solution
With data automatically enriched by our machine learning models, gini was able to build a fully functioning Saving Goals feature that resonated with users and increased engagement.

The new feature automatically calculates a monthly OK to Spend amount by subtracting the user’s total monthly expenses (past and upcoming) and Savings Goal from their total monthly income. It also has a traffic light system that warns users when it’s time to reign in their spending.

None of this was possible without first enriching the transaction data with accurate merchant names and categories.
The challenge
A recent digital banking survey showed low levels of satisfaction, with 87% of customers finding it hard to understand their transaction feeds.
My current spending history is confusing. I want to see the ACTUAL shop name.
To address this — and reduce queries — the bank planned to first replace standard transaction codes with clear merchant names and categories throughout its digital banking services. And then to increase loyalty with a personal finance app, built on the foundation of enriched data. 

However, developing the technology to transform such large volumes of transaction data was proving to be a Herculean task — one that would take years. So they looked for an external provider to help clean, structure and enrich the data accurately and quickly.

The solution
Impressed by the quality and speed of gini’s enrichment engine in the pilot project, the bank plans to integrate our scalable software into their own systems to allow for real-time data processing and enrichment. The best part is, gini’s technology is easily accessible as a SaaS solution on AWS Marketplace, avoiding the need for lengthy tech stack integration processes.

Soon, the bank’s entire customer base will have their transaction feeds transformed from confusing codes to recognisable merchant names, logos and categories. This is predicted to have a significantly positive impact on NPS scores.

Equipped with enriched data, the bank’s development team will then be able to build a competitive personal finance app with much richer features than otherwise possible.
Contact us to find out more about our digital banking data solutions
Contact us
Find out how data enrichment can help you build better PFM features
Contact us

Open banking in 2020: Are you ready?

Open banking is primed to become the new norm in Asia Pacific. But, as our research report shows, the majority of bankers in the region are not sufficiently prepared for what’s coming.

It’s time to get smart on what open banking is and how it’s expected to impact the market this year. 
gini's original research report on open banking in Asia Pacific for 2020
Download the research report
Download the open Banking 2020 research report by gini
We interviewed more than 300 finance and technology thought leaders across Asia on the industry’s readiness for open banking this year, with surprising results. 
Download our Open Banking 2020 research report to find out: 

The opportunities in store for all participants
The barriers to adoption
Who is expected to benefit most 
How institutions can generate revenue from open APIs
And more

A better way to forecast your business finances

By
on
Apr 8, 2021

Do you know what your profit is likely to be 6 months from now? How about your projected cash flow in 12 months? Do you feel confident in your answers?

Every business owner needs this vital information, yet it can be annoyingly difficult to figure out. Take for example this statistic from Quickbooks - 44% of SMBs who experienced cash flow issues said the problems were a surprise.

The problem most business leaders face with forecasting finances is the tradeoff between speed and accuracy: either spend the time to analyse the data properly and risk making a late move, or go with estimates and risk making the wrong move.

Or option 3 - go with your gut.

We recently surveyed 500 small businesses and found that 61% are creating financial forecasts once a week or more, and their most essential concerns when going through the forecasting process were: 

  1. To minimize the amount of time it took to generate the forecast (speed)
  2. To reduce the likelihood that the forecast was off by a moderate degree of accuracy (quality)

Quality forecasts are needed faster than any analyst can produce them. They've gone from being a once-a-month obligation to a continuous weekly necessity.

So, is there a way to forecast business finances fast enough AND accurately enough to keep up with the pace of change in 2021?

The answer, we’re happy to say, is yes.

AI-powered forecasts are at least 50% more accurate and 100 times faster 

AI predictive models hold the answer (don’t freak out).

Why?  

Because compared to humans, AI predictive models:

  • Are better at identifying patterns in the data
  • Can analyse large amounts of data in seconds
  • Continuously improve in accuracy, creating a robust, self-learning system

Basically, AI predictive technology makes reliable, continuous forecasting a reality. And that is an enormous advantage to any business.

However, most businesses can’t access this technology because it requires specialist skills and substantial resources. But we’ve made it easy for anyone to use. No coding needed.

giniPredict: AI-powered forecasts for non-tech people

giniPredict uses AI predictive models to do the work for you, analysing your historical data and running reliable forecasts that reflect the seasonality in your data, giving you a clearer view of the road ahead.

In other words, giniPredict makes running reliable data predictions easy. 

And fast. 

Here’s how it works: First get your data in order, then try our AI-powered financial dashboard, and if you’re someone who runs a lot of forecasts, you’ll love our AI-powered forecasting add-on, too.

Step 1: Get your business finance data in order

For a proper forecast on your business finances, you’ll need to have your income, operating expenses, cost of sales and net profit data for the last few years organised.

Our AI predictive models are robust to missing data, but only to a certain extent.

This is the part that can take the most time, and usually involves consolidating spreadsheets from numerous departments and software systems (and a considerable amount of cursing).

We highly recommend – for the sake of your sanity – automating the work with accounting software like Xero. All your financial data in one place, simplified, easy, done.

Step 2: Get forecasts on your Xero data with the giniPredict Financial Dashboard

The giniPredict Financial Dashboard generates an AI-powered forecast on your business finances as soon as you connect to Xero. 

You get a baseline prediction for your income, expenses and profit, with a 95% confidence interval for guidance.

The data syncs automatically every 12 hours and is refreshed in a click, so you don’t have to worry about outdated forecasts again.

Plus, the more you use it, the more the models learn from your data, and the more accurate the forecast becomes.


To get a reliable forecast, you’ll need to have these reports in Xero, going back at least 3 years:

  • Total income
  • Operating expenses
  • Net profit
  • Cost of sales (optional)

The dashboard also performs key driver analysis for you, and gives you clarity on the true profitability of your business at a glance. 

To get started, simply log into Google > open our dashboard template (link to dashboard landing page) > follow the instructions to authorise Xero and Google Data Studio > and voila! AI-powered insights for your data will be populated in a new dashboard before your very eyes.

Get your Xero financial dashboard in under 5 minutes for free

Step 3: Run your own AI-powered forecasts with the giniPredict add-on

If you want to run further forecasts and scenarios on your Xero data, or any other time series data, the giniPredict Google Sheet add-on makes it easy. 

You’ll get AI-powered forecasts in a few clicks, saving you hours, so you can dive straight into analysing and testing decisions.

You can either import business finance data directly from Xero, or paste in any quantitative time series data to run forecasts on, such as web traffic, ad performance, user growth, and much more.

Run forecasts on any variable in a few clicks.

You’ll get a 6 to 12-month forecast reflecting the seasonality in your data, with a 95% confidence interval.

Run scenarios to see potential outcomes

Once you’ve run a forecast, you can change any of the predicted data and run scenarios to see the potential impact of a spike in demand, losing a major customer, a late payment, hiring a new employee, or any decision you need to test.

When running forecasts, bear these principles in mind:

  • The further into the future you forecast, the less accurate it will be.
  • The more data you give it, the more the model learns, the more accurate the forecast.
  • The higher the quality of your data, the more accurate the forecast.

To get started, first install the add-on (Link to GWM)> open a new Google Sheet > go to “Add-ons” and “giniPredict” > follow the instructions to connect to Xero or paste in and format your own data.

Start running your own forecasts for free

Quicker, easier and more accurate forecasts for your business finances 

To sum up, giniPredict makes it possible for anyone to forecast their business finances faster, so they can make quick, confident decisions and navigate fast-changing environments with speed.

Here’s a nifty little summary of why giniPredict is better than manual forecasting in a spreadsheet or advanced forecasting in Python: 

Oh, and did we mention it’s free?

Yes, it’s free.

Go on, take it for a spin and see the difference it makes.


Contact us

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