Are you tasked with making organizational decisions that have placed you in a major dilemma? As a decision-maker in today’s fast-paced economy, you must wonder how you can cut costs, improve the bottom line, and still maintain the data quality necessary to make strategic decisions.
Take heart because it IS possible to achieve a balance of on-premise and off-premise Enterprise Performance Management (EPM) software while maintaining integrity and control of your data to provide the quality and data assurance needed for success – AND benefit financially from new Cloud technologies.
Success is a combination of understanding what each data tract requires and creating an integration strategy consisting of the necessary business processes and software tools that deliver consistency and integrity of your EPM strategic data.
Past trends called for a tight on-premise coupling of all EPM software to achieve the best results. This strategy required maintenance of a large hardware and software infrastructure and related personnel to keep everything running smoothly. The new Cloud “POD” subscriptions are geared toward reducing the high costs of infrastructure which is a financial benefit. As in all things in life, there is a consequence of moving to Cloud technology. An unexpected consequence of Pod technology is the creation of isolated silos of information, but there is an easy resolution! The key to overcoming this limitation is to gain an understanding of what each component offers and demands, and creating an integration strategy to bridge that gap.
If you are interested in learning how to create this strategy to bring the various pieces together as a unified solution or if your organization plans to migrate to the EPM Cloud platform in the future, this whitepaper helps to define a process to pre-build the integration strategy and make moving to the Cloud easier with reduced time to migrate.
ODTUG Kscope11 is right around the corner. Kscope11 offers the chance for a full day EPM Symposium on Sunday, plus the opportunity to learn from experts in the EPM and BI fields on a wide range of topics.
Edgewater Ranzal will be well represented at the conference, with our associates presenting eight presentations covering Planning, DRM, EPMA, HFM, and FDM. The sessions that we will be presenting at Kscope11 are summarized below. Each title links to an abstract for the presentation, providing additional details.
Over the past several months, and quite possibly the past year or two, there have been numerous discussions regarding the need for a separate master data management (MDM) tool such as Hyperion / Oracle Data Relationship Management (DRM) to manage Hyperion metadata outside of the Enterprise Performance Management Architect (EPMA) tool that comes with Hyperion System 9 and Oracle Fusion 11.
Recently at a users’ conference, I heard comments like “EPMA is DRM ‘Light’” and “EPMA is DRM with a Web interface”.
Hyperion, and obviously now Oracle, has invested deeply in EPMA and it is difficult to identify how and where it might differ from the DRM product. Oracle has even used portions of the DRM base code and underlying architecture in EPMA and when looking at vapor-ware demos, you might draw similar conclusions to those quotes above. In reality, EPMA, in its current state, is a pumped up version of the old Hyperion HUB as it relates to metadata management. Granted, EPMA has updated the user interface leveraging the glyphs (icons) and nomenclature from DRM while completely missing the intellectual aptitude that a master data tool provides.
Below are the key uses that were provided in a recent Oracle presentation as well shows the difference between EPMA and DRM: EPMA
Unifies and aligns application administration processes across the Hyperion EPM system
Imports and shares business dimensions in the Dimension Library
Builds, validates, and deploys applications in the Application Library
Designs and maintains business rules in Calculation Manager
Loads and synchronizes transaction data into and between EPM applications
Manages change of business master data across enterprise applications
Consolidates and rationalizes structures across source systems
Conforms dimensions and validate integrity of attributes and relationships
Synchronizes alternate business views with corporate hierarchies
Key Features include:
i. Versioning and Modeling
ii. Custom rules and validation
iii. Configurable exports
iv. Granular security
v. Change tracking
Does this resemble your IT person managing your financial master data?
Traditionally, financial data marts and operation data stores are built and managed by IT. So how does the business user view and manage the hierarchies and metadata attributes without IT getting in the way? Coming from the IT side of the house, I have had the opinion that the business might “know the business”, but given the opportunity to manage a technical system they will take shortcuts and ultimately bring the IT solution back to a level they are comfortable with…and thanks to Bill Gates, Microsoft Excel ends up trumping the investment in technology.
I have found that there needs to be a bridge between IT and business users. By the nature of a bridge, there is a span that straddles an open gap with the potential if not built correctly the plunge can be a long and ‘fatal’ fall.
There are many companies offering workflow tools to bridge the gap by helping the communication between business and IT. Alone these solutions still leave opportunity for failure as IT is managing systems it does not have an intimate ownership in. Nor does IT have the knowledge to determine if the business is going to request a change that will impact the system. IT presumes that if the software allows the change than there is no reason why not to do it. As we all have experience one time or another, this is a bad assumption.
Of the many tools I have worked with, currently the Oracle Data Relationship Management (DRM) tool (formally Hyperion MDM / Razza Dimension Server) fills the gap between business and IT. Using a tool such as this gives a strong user interface that the business can use and buy into while allowing IT to be involved by building edit checks and integrity checks into DRM. Additionally it provides IT the vested ownership while keeping the business from impacting their own “business rules”. Not to mention IT’s data governance policies are enforced which keeps IT happy.