Budget analysts are the workers who help companies organize their checkbooks and finances. They do not simply calculate and add, but also prepare budget reports and monitor spending practices.
Budget analysts work closely with project managers and other employees to develop the company budget. In addition, they also review budget proposals by managers and make calls on completeness and compliance.
Ultimately it is this person’s job to combine all data together to make a consolidated budget.
Duties Involved in Budget Analysis
However, doing the math and organizing the material is only part of the job. You must also explain recommendations to executives, the public and perhaps even legislators. You analyze the company plan along with the Chief Operation Officer.
Together, you ensure that the company (usually a million dollar business) stays within budget and estimates future financial needs. Sometimes you are in charge of putting the brakes on and informing management of the availability of these funds.
Depending on your career focus, you may find yourself in a variety of venues, including government agencies, universities, businesses and nonprofits. Your primary job will be to analyze data and determine not only expense transactions and income, but also the cost and financial benefits of programs. You will be recommended funding levels based on concrete data, justifiable by figures and projections.
While you obviously will not be making these decisions yourself, do not underestimate the trust that company heads will put in your vision. Leaders often rely, on budget analysts, to prepare this information so that they can use it in pitching it to other executive members.
Other Responsibilities in the Office
You may be asked to explore alternative funding, budgets of the past, research new financial trends, and monitor any internal or external factor that could influence company finances.
The budget analyst oversees spending but with specific focus on evaluating company programs, to see whether they are producing the same result. Much of this correspondence will take place via reports.
The typical day will see a budget analyst working independently, compiling data and preparing proposals. If you work outside of commercial enterprise, then you may actually spend more time finding better ways to distribute allocated funds across various departments. Consulting with others, from managers to executives, comes with the job, and you will be expected to provide advice and technical support in matters of cost analysis and fiscal allocation.
Understand the importance of the task. You are partly responsible for summarizing budgets and giving a clear presentation, which determines the final approval or dismissal of fund requests.
Your input and thorough analysis can prevent a commercial company from making a big mistake, and in some cases, prevent an agency from sending funds that are truly going to make a difference in someone’s life.
This is not merely an accounting job, but a very serious leadership role, and it is one that you can take with the right education and experience. Start training today, so you can make an amazing first impression on your future employer.