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eWorkshop: Budget monitoring essentials


Key discoveries

  • How to create budget monitoring and forecast reports for internal use and donor reporting
  • What to look for on a budget monitoring report to track and manage project performance
  • How to analyse and manage budget variances
  • How to use a budget monitoring report to detect fraud or abuse.

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Download or print the full course outline here

Course code: ES7e

This online course introduces the key skills you need to prepare and analyse project budget monitoring and forecast reports, including donor financial reports.

The eWorkshop is run over five weeks and is fully supported by our field-experienced trainers.  There are no 'live' sessions so you can complete the learning resources, team-based activities, and practical assignments in a time that suits you.  You should plan to spend up to 1 hour each day on the eLearning site, and a total of 5 to 7 hours to complete each weekly module.

"The practical work of updating your own budget monitoring report was really engaging, and made the learnings realistic as there was an opportunity to apply them.”

Read more about our eLearning approach here


Course costsEarly booking
Standard booking
Individuals, and non-profit organisations with less than £1m income275345
Non-profit organisations more than £1m income345430
For-profit/governmental organisations430550

Who should attend

This course is suitable for staff in the not-for-profit sector with responsibility for:

This is an introductory-level course and is the follow-up to Mango’s Budgeting essentials eWorkshop. Previous experience in writing budgets is useful.

We recommend that you read this course outline carefully to make sure the content is relevant and meets your learning requirements. If you are not sure if this course is for you, please contact us.

Programme guide

Programme guide

Week 1


Getting to know you and the course
  • Introductions
  • What you already know
  • The Four Building Blocks of financial management
  • Overview of financial reporting and budget monitoring
  • The Plan-Do-Review process
Week 2


The budget monitoring report
  • Budget monitoring reports – layout and content
  • Where the figures come from
  • About accounting codes
  • Funder reporting formats
  • Practical assignment
Week 3  
Variance analysis
  • What causes variances
  • Classifying variances
  • The variance analysis table
  • Options for managing variances
  • Practical assignment

Week 4


Budget forecasting
  • Layout of the budget forecast report
  • How to create a forecast report
  • Forecast reports and funder reporting
  • Practical assignment
Week 5  
  • Budget management – bonus tools
  • Reflections and key messages
  • Action planning
  • Evaluation

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Prepare a project budget monitoring report using a phased budget and data on actual income and expenditure
  • Calculate budget variance percentages to help assess project progress compared to plan
  • Prepare a budget Variance Analysis Table to identify significant variances and any areas of concern
  • Classify the root cause of budget variances using a 3-criteria model
  • Complete a Budget Management Action Plan to ensure the project and budget stay on track
  • Create a project budget forecast report based on latest activity plans and information.
  • Describe the four building blocks of financial management and how budget monitoring contributes to good practice in financial and grant management
  • Describe the Plan-Do-Review process in project financial management
  • Describe the purpose and key components of a budget monitoring report
  • Describe the role of accounting codes in budget monitoring reports
  • Describe the purpose and key components of a budget forecast report.
  • Feel confident to use budget monitoring reports in project and grant management

Course dates

There are no up-and-coming courses in the open training programme.

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