Budgeting and Forecasting

Budget Process 101

Course Overview


Budget Process 101





Field of Study



Budgeting and Planning


Offered Both as Group-Live Class and E-Learning Opportunity


8 (Group-Live) / 6 (E-Learning)

The typical government budgeting process spans many months, and individuals from all departments and levels of the organization participate. To ensure that all stakeholders support the final budget and execute it effectively, the budget process must provide for sufficient collaboration and be perceived as fair. This course, which is designed for budget managers, budget analysts or others involved in preparing a budget, will walk through a typical local government budget process, with special emphasis on how GFOA's Financial Foundations Framework can be utilized to address common budget pitfalls. You will learn how to design a budget process, identify appropriate roles for key stakeholders, and organize work effort for your budget team. The course will cover all aspects of the budget process, including establishing a vision and priorities, engaging with the public, developing the annual budget, maintaining relationships, and monitoring the budget throughout the year.

Learning Objectives

  • Identify the steps in developing and managing a balanced budget
  • Identify the key stakeholders involved in budgeting
  • Learn how to develop a budget schedule that provides sufficient time for stakeholder collaboration
  • Understand the importance of planning as a precursor to budgeting
  • Learn how to build trust both internally and externally through your budget process
  • Learn techniques and tips to improve your budget process
  • Learn strategies for dealing with conflicts during the budget development process
  • Identify ways to build a fair and transparent budget process
  • Learn leadership skills to help navigate the politics of the budget approval process
  • Understand the differences between budget controls and budget monitoring and how to implement both
  • Learn how budget monitoring and performance metrics can help keep your stakeholders engaged in the budget throughout the year

Who Will Benefit

Budget Analyst

Budget Manager

Department Director

Schedule and Sample Agenda



Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Group Live


8 Hours



2 Hours

2 Hours

2 Hours

Course Instructors

This course is taught by experienced budgeting practitioners and GFOA staff. Instructors will be familiar with GFOA best practices and have experience as finance director, budget director, or CEO of various size local governments.