That is pretty handy.
This recent post explains how to do it yourself.
To clarify, what I am proposing is to project your current workload into the future on a routine basis. By logging in your actual results as well, you can monitor how your workload is trending. A "Trailing 12 Month" trend provides really good data for recognizing a downturn or for verifying an upturn.
Undoubtedly you have a hunch about how things are going. Having some real facts to go with your hunch has a lot of benefits. I would rather know how the next two months are going to play out rather than just think things will be OK. Maybe things will be fine if you implement one particular strategy - but not just any strategy.
Here are some benefits that I have experienced.
- I have seen the signs of a downturn / upturn while our backlog 'seemed' average
- Foresaw the need for overtime to meet commitments
- Saw the need to dial back everyone's hours to get through a slow patch without layoffs
- Fine tuned the timing of a purchase of new computers to a dip in workload
- Planned a strategic project implementation during a less busy time
- Maybe your lease is up and you need to plan a move. Should you spread out the tasks or target an intense effort at a specific time?
- Can you afford bonuses / raises and have the workload to recover the cash after the year-end cash drain?
- Time a new hire to accommodate their orientation before their productivity will be needed.
Take a look at how to set up your own projections spreadsheet in this article OR buy my spreadsheet [$19] and fill in your own data.