Budgeting Software

A computer program used in designing, managing, monitoring and altering budgets

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What is Budgeting Software?

Budgeting software is any computer program that helps an individual or business design, manage, monitor and alter their budget. Examples of software range from Microsoft Excel on one end to SAP on the other end. In this article, we will examine and compare various types of software for budgeting purposes.

Budgeting Software

Types of budgeting software

There are two main categories of budgeting software: business and personal.  Business software is typically significantly more complex and more expensive and often requires a high degree of customization. Personal software, on the other hand, can be much simpler and more affordable. This guide will examine options on both sides, starting with business software and then moving on to personal.

Business budgeting software

Below is a non-exhaustive list of popular software options for businesses. Depending on the size of the company and the complexity of its needs, some options may be better than others. Please read each description carefully to find out which could be a good fit for your company.

List of business budgeting software solutions:

  • Abila MIP Fund Accounting
  • AccountEdge
  • AccuFund Accounting Suite
  • Acumatica ERP
  • Adaptive Insights
  • Budget Maestro
  • BudgetPak by XLerant
  • Deskera ERP
  • Financial Edge by Blackbaud
  • Multiview
  • NetSuite
  • QuickBooks Enterprise
  • Sage Intacct
  • SAP Anywhere
  • SAP ERP Core Finance
  • VersAccounts Small Business Cloud ERP
  • Xledger

Personal budgeting software

Personal budgets are very different from business budgets, not only in the level of complexity but also for the purpose they serve. Most people know they need to have a budget (and stick to it!) but most don’t want to go through the process of making one. In order to make the entire process a little easier, you may want to consider a personal budgeting software to help you along the way.

Below is a non-exhaustive list of personal budgeting software:

  • Acorns
  • CountAbout
  • LearnVest
  • Mint
  • Money Dance
  • Money Dance
  • Mvelopes
  • Personal Capital
  • Quicken
  • You Need a Budget (YNAB)

Software and the Budgeting Process

For most people and businesses, budgeting is a continuous process and something that should be revisited as regularly as possible.

For companies, the process typically includes an annual kickoff meeting where the Budget Head is appointed, tasks are delegated, and the annual planning calendar is developed.

Throughout the year, actual results will be compared to the budget, and they will be evaluated using variance analysis.

A software program may be an integral part of this entire process, aiding with the collection of data, analysis of results, and presentation of financial reporting.

Budgeting Software in Corporate Process

Image source: CFI’s Budgeting Course.

Excel vs. Software

You may be surprised how many companies still use Microsoft Excel as their primary budgeting tool. Even though it may seem strange, the unlimited flexibility and sheer simplicity of MS Excel make it something that people just can’t help reverting to.

At CFI, our Budgeting & Forecasting Course focuses exclusively on Excel as a means of building budgets, performing variance analysis, forecasting, and building models, charts, and graphs as outputs.

By using Excel, a financial analyst has full control and full visibility into the numbers. One area where software comes short is that it can be something of a “black box” that can’t be fully audited (or at least, it’s difficult to audit).

While specific budgeting software offers many wonderful benefits, for the financial analyst, Excel is still likely to be a major part of your life.

Additional Resources

Documenting Excel Models Best Practices

Financial Modeling Software

Projecting Balance Sheet Items

See all FP&A resources

Analyst Certification FMVA® Program

Below is a break down of subject weightings in the FMVA® financial analyst program. As you can see there is a heavy focus on financial modeling, finance, Excel, business valuation, budgeting/forecasting, PowerPoint presentations, accounting and business strategy.


Financial Analyst certification curriculum


A well rounded financial analyst possesses all of the above skills!


Additional Questions & Answers

CFI is the global institution behind the financial modeling and valuation analyst FMVA® Designation. CFI is on a mission to enable anyone to be a great financial analyst and have a great career path. In order to help you advance your career, CFI has compiled many resources to assist you along the path.

In order to become a great financial analyst, here are some more questions and answers for you to discover:


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