ENTERPRISE PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS
Technology Value Matrix for Corporate Performance Management 2015
THE BOTTOM LINE
Nucleus evaluated the usability and functionality of the most influential corporate performance management (CPM) solutions in the market. The space continues to see change as users are demanding more advanced capabilities to bring additional value to their implementations. The vendors who succeed in providing high ROI to their customers have strong integrations, a cloud deployment option, and offer a user interface that is able to increase productivity and adoption rates. Most importantly, the CPM vendors that are leading the pack offer vertical solutions with out-of-the-box capabilities that drive an accelerated time to value.
Historically, CPM solutions have been used primarily for tactical and operational functions. It has been a tool to measure performance within an organization, which has allowed managers to standardize processes for greater efficiency. More recently, customers are seeing the strategic value that CPM can bring to their organizations if leveraged effectively. Nucleus found that there are three key features that differentiated progressive CPM solutions from the pack,
As customers are becoming more educated about the cloud, they are more inclined to seek solutions that offer it as a deployment option. In the CPM space, there are still a number of vendors that are still on premise only and, although some may tout more advanced functionality at this point, vendors with cloud solutions can adopt a faster upgrade cycle, allowing them to innovate more quickly and catch up to on-premise solutions. Nucleus expects that in order for CPM solutions to remain relevant they will have to adopt a cloud strategy to keep up with the pace of new technology.
Excel-based user interface (UI). Many solutions are trying to incorporate at least some Excel-style features, or even a full Excel user interface. This allows users to leverage skills that they have acquired from common use of Excel such as formula or table creation. Such an interface can help reduce the learning curve and can accelerate the time to value. When users are unsure of how to proceed in their CPM solution, they usually turn to Excel to manually develop a solution. By having an Excel-based user interface, CPM solutions help prevent users from resorting to external Excel.
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Business intelligence (BI) integration. CPM solutions that can develop deeper insights by utilizing BI integrations help move a CPM solution from being an operational tracking system into a strategic tool. Customers are looking for more than just visibility into the activities of their organizations and want to have access to a thorough analysis they can turn into forward-looking initiatives, which is best accomplished with BI integrations that can pull in data from across an organization.
UsabilityFunctionalityFacilitatorExpertLeaderCore ProviderCentageQPRSASAxiomHost AnalyticsLongviewTagetikCPM vendors are increasingly investing in integration capabilities to provide more advanced functionality and to make their applications more accessible from an IT perspective. As more companies are moving away from on-premise solutions, the vendors that are able to provide a true cloud-based product will excel the most quickly in the market. These solutions will further reduce the burden on IT and will enable companies to make continuous upgrades to their solutions, resulting in a more modern user interface. Nucleus expects those investing in usability and dark cockpit-driven design principles will advance in future matrices and will also gain market share away from those whose applications are more complex and costly to learn and support.CPMVALUE MATRIX 2015 KCI ComputingVenaarcplanBoardAdaptive InsightsInforIBMOracleSAP
Nucleus has found that users are increasingly demanding out-of-the box functionality that is specific to their industry. In the BI space, solutions that have vertical capabilities provide users with a 57 percent faster time to value and reduce costs by 65 percent (Nucleus Research, p64 – Vertical solutions drive greater analytics value, April 2015). Vendors in the CPM space have been slower to pick up on this trend and Nucleus expects that those with the foresight to act on it will soon have the strongest positioning in the market.
Leaders include Adaptive Insights, Board, Host Analytics, IBM, Infor, Oracle, SAP, and Vena. Page 3 © 2015 Nucleus Research, Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Nucleus Research is the leading provider of value-focused technology research and advice. NucleusResearch.com
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Adaptive Insights is the leader in usability because Nucleus has found that customers are able to use the system with little required training, resulting in an ongoing higher rate of productivity.
In April, Adaptive announced Adaptive Solution, which provides capabilities specific to microevents in an organization, bringing finance, sales, and service stakeholders together on its cloud CPM and BI platform. The platform’s pioneering solution, Adaptive Revenue, provides out-of-the-box functionality with minimal configuration requirements.
In April, Adaptive also announced Adaptive Suite 2015.1, which allows for improved visibility and over 20 new enhancements for the CFO. Some of its new functionality includes:
New enterprise visibility. With a one-click refresh feature, users are able to update information easily and on-demand.
Integration from Salesforce to dashboards. The business user is able to populate Adaptive Discovery Dashboards with data from sales, service, and customers, which allows them to configure personalized dashboards.
Scorecards for Adaptive Discovery. Visualization is enhanced with the ability to graphically compare scorecards over various periods of time.
Nucleus expects that the new features will increase productivity and enhance access for
business users. In particular, the self-service capabilities, the additional integration, and
the departure from IT will allow for further differentiation from its competitors.
BOARD offers a consolidated CPM and BI solution with profitability analysis, strategy management, financial and management reporting, and budgeting, planning, and forecasting. By providing access to analytics within the CPM solutions, users are able to experience insights in context. This helps drive productivity by decreasing hesitation time in making decisions and reducing time spent toggling between tabs.
In February, BOARD announced the release of BOARD 9, the newest version of its flagship consolidated CPM and BI offering. Some of the key feature enhancements include:
BOARD Enterprise Analytics Modelling. This is a new module that enables the integration of advanced and predictive analytics functionality into the core business operations.
BOARD mobile apps. This is a second generation version of the company’s Mobile Intelligence that adds performance management capabilities to the preexisting analysis and reporting.
Geo-intelligence. New capabilities enable users to create an interactive map to visually interpret data.
In-memory server cluster. This feature allows applications to be deployed across a variety of machines.
BOARD Nexel. This adds agility to BOARD’s data analysis by providing Exel-based formulas in reports.
Moving forward, Nucleus expects that BOARD will be able to adopt a speedier cadence of
updates as it moves to the cloud, which will encourage future advancements in the Matrix.
Host Analytics offers cloud-based solutions for modeling, planning, close management, reporting, and analytics. It is able to provide users with a number of pre-packaged capabilities that Nucleus finds drives an accelerated time to value. To further promote fast implementation and a high adoption rate, the company leverages an Excel-based user interface, which business users are familiar with, thereby requiring a minimal amount of training.
In April, Host Analytics announced the release of Modeling Cloud, which helps users perform modeling on financial and operational data coming from Host Analytics Cloud EPM Suite and other sources. The solutions leverage HTML5, NoSQL, In-memory computing, and a patent-pending cloud-based calculation engine. Some of its capabilities include:
Self-service interactive query and analysis. Business users can perform multidimensional analysis on financial and operational data to better understand business trends and acquire key insights.
New modeling functionality. Users in finance and operations can add members, calculations, sub-models, and business dimensions using self-service capabilities that help relieve the burden on IT.
Excel-based reporting. Organizations can leverage Excel as the primary vehicle for reporting and information presentation.
In March, Host Analytics announced bi-directional packaged integration for Oracle
Hyperion and the Host Analytics EPM suite. This feature is key for customers that are still
using Oracle Hyperion but want access to a lighter and more flexible cloud-based solution
for divisions and departments.
Moving forward, Nucleus expects that Host Analytics will continue to invest in its user
interface to allow for easy access to its solution for the business user, as well as
additional operational planning solutions, driving productivity improvements throughout
an organization. As a cloud-based solution, it will be able to maintain a strong position in
the market with a quick upgrade cycle. Page 5 © 2015 Nucleus Research, Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Nucleus Research is the leading provider of value-focused technology research and advice. NucleusResearch.com
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Leveraging the Cognos TM1 platform, IBM offers a portfolio of CPM capabilities and leads the market with advanced functionality and a high level of usability. This is largely a result of its close integration with IBM BI tools and its adaptability that allows users to personalize their solutions. In addition, now that these CPM capabilities are available on the cloud, users can quickly and easily add capabilities where and when required.
On the functionality side, some of IBM’s differentiating features include predictive analytics, which are incorporated into the CPM solutions using bi-directional integration between SPSS Modeler and Cognos TM1. This is a major advancement that other high performing vendors should also aim for.
IBM also stands out with IBM Concert, a solution that provides collaboration capabilities for its CPM products. It is able to prioritize tasks with personalized task lists that enable collaboration and the sharing of ideas through the cloud and a mobile application. This helps users experience higher levels of productivity and leverages combined intellect to help improve the decision making process.
Moving forward, Nucleus expects that IBM will continue to integrate its advanced BI tools into its CPM solutions, further differentiating itself from other players in the market. In addition, because its solutions are available on premise or in the cloud, there will be a quick adoption of its solutions among new customers looking to modernize their solutions in the cloud, where it makes sense, without negotiating on functionality.
Infor offers a CPM solution that integrates closely with BI to provide deeper analytics capabilities. Some of its functionality includes strategic management, forecasting, financial consolidation, financial reporting, and planning and budgeting. To incorporate BI aspects and outside data sources, users can leverage the Infor BI OLAP Server, or the Infor BI Application Studio to smoothly transfer data and insights. The Infor architecture also allows for easier integration with other data sources such as customer relationship management (CRM). In addition, the solution drives adoption with modern dashboards, gauges, scorecards, and other visualization capabilities.
Infor has been pushing verticalization into its enterprise applications, which accelerates the time to value, while lowering consulting costs for implementations. This strategy will help the company gain ground rapidly in the market against its competitors.
Infor excels in easy integration, which will be a key differentiating factor moving forward. Customers are demanding a centralized source of data that can be accessed across an enterprise and will respond to its lightweight, flexible use. Moving forward, Nucleus expects that Infor can improve its positioning by adding to its feature list with increased embedded functionality. Page 6 © 2015 Nucleus Research, Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Nucleus Research is the leading provider of value-focused technology research and advice. NucleusResearch.com
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Oracle is the longstanding legacy CPM solution. It offers a thorough list of functionality including embedded analytics, and interactive dashboarding. Hyperion is its flagship offering and its products include Oracle Enterprise Performance Management Cloud, Oracle Strategy Management Solutions, Oracle Planning, Budgeting, and Forecasting Solutions, Oracle Financial Close and Reporting Solutions, Oracle Profitability and Cost Management Solutions, and Oracle Enterprise Performance Management Platform Solutions.
Oracle is putting significant effort into transferring what has been an entirely on-premise solution into the cloud in order to provide users with the natural benefits associated with the cloud including a lower total cost of ownership and a more modern user interface. CPM customers have reported that Hyperion does not offer the same benefits that they can experience with natural cloud solutions (Nucleus Research, o256 – Adaptive Insights versus Hyperion, November 2014). Moving forward, Nucleus expects that with further development of its cloud strategy, Oracle will be able to reach a higher level of usability so that end users will be better able to navigate and adopt its solutions.
SAP offers a full portfolio of CPM solutions with products including SAP Strategy Management, SAP Business Planning and Consolidation, SAP Cloud for Planning, SAP Profitability and Cost Management, SAP Intercompany, SAP Financial Consolidation, SAP Disclosure Management, and SAP Financial Information Management. A differentiator for this CPM provider is that with its set of products it has strong integration capabilities, allowing for more in-depth analysis across an organization.
In October, SAP announced that it built a new public cloud planning solution with embedded analytics and collaboration on the HANA Cloud Platform, leveraging modern design principles. SAP continues to invest in the on-premise solution, SAP Business Planning and Consolidation (BPC), in order to give customers the choice and the ability to integrate both for hybrid, on-premise, and cloud solutions. In addition, customers can bi-directionally integrate with SAP Cloud for Planning, which allows for sharing data, models, and worksheets. This will allow greater accessibility throughout the organization, where it is intended to simplify financial planning and analysis.
Nucleus expects that with a full pivot to the cloud, SAP will be able to increase the usability and flexibility of its CPM solutions. In addition, if the company establishes a cloud transition model for preexisting customers while continuing investments in its on-premise solutions, allowing for an easier and faster migration process, it will encourage users to take advantage of the cloud’s inherent benefits when they desire. Page 7 © 2015 Nucleus Research, Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Nucleus Research is the leading provider of value-focused technology research and advice. NucleusResearch.com
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Vena Solutions offers support for any spreadsheet-intensive business process including, budgeting, planning and forecasting, financial reporting and analysis, financial close management and consolidations, regulatory reporting and disclosure management, and extended financial and accounting processes. The solutions are offered on premise or through the cloud, using primarily multi-tenant Amazon Web Services (AWS) as well as Microsoft Azure. With a selection of offerings, Vena has found that users are increasingly adopting the cloud in order to reduce the burden on IT while increasing flexibility.
The company leverages an Excel-based user interface to leverage the benefits of spreadsheet use as well as those of traditional enterprise solutions to further promote adoption among users. The almost universal understanding of Excel provides a solid basis in usability, while the enterprise aspect permits users to more easily transfer data from Excel spreadsheets to the CPM solution and its central database. The company is able to increase the value of Excel by bringing its capabilities to the cloud, a step that has yet to be reached by several of its competitors with Excel-based user interfaces.
In April, Vena announced the launch of Vena Europe along with two new offices in London and Amsterdam. This move will help to further promote its global presence and strategy to reach more customers that need a scalable and agile solution. In addition, as Vena continues to leverage its partnerships with Obero Solutions, Applied Analytix Inc., and SandPoint Consulting, the company will be able to more rapidly gain traction in the European market.
Nucleus expects that Vena will adopt a faster release cycle with its cloud architecture. This will drive a faster pace of innovation than its on-premise competitors, which will propel Vena to a better positioning in the next Matrix.
Facilitators include Longview and QPR.
Longview provides CPM and tax provisioning solutions, leveraging its primary offering, Longview 7, to drive automated functionality. The company focuses on making its solutions accessible to business users with minimal reliance on IT departments. This is a key strategy that helps drive user adoption, which has traditionally been a challenge for CPM vendors across the board.
In April, Longview announced updates to its CPM and tax solution, in Longview 7.2. Some of its functionality includes enhanced Web reporting, in-memory computing for reports and data submissions, and new Longview Tables that allow users to view data in a multidimensional format. On the usability side, Longview also invested in a new user Page 8 © 2015 Nucleus Research, Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Nucleus Research is the leading provider of value-focused technology research and advice. NucleusResearch.com
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interface that provides consistency across its components. This allows for simplified access, which further drives productivity levels.
In March, Longview announced that it is merging with arcplan, a BI and CPM provider. The two companies plan to leapfrog over competition by leveraging the dashboarding and mobile capabilities of arcplan with the tax provisioning and CPM functionality of Longview.
Nucleus expects that the merge with arcplan will help Longview leverage its new user interface with some of the features that are most appealing to arcplan customers, improving the Matrix positioning for both companies.
QPR continues to invest in functionality, driving a CPM solution that leverages process business intelligence (process BI) to drive actionable insights. Nucleus has found that the company focuses on providing insights that lend to an effective analysis of movement through scorecards and influence analysis. These features are able to identify the pain points in an organization while automating as much data entry as possible. Some of the most commonly used pre-built integrations that customers implement include SAP, Oracle, and Salesforce.
Some of the company’s primary products include QPR ProcessDesigner, QPR EnterpriseArchitect, QPR ProcessAnalyzer, and QPR Metrics. In April, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office granted QPR a patent on technology that utilizes event instance data obtained from information management systems for the analysis and development of business processes and operational strategies. The software is able to produce process flowcharts from the data collected with drill down or high level viewing capabilities.
Moving forward, Nucleus expects that QPR will continue to invest in further refining its new process intelligence technology and will invest in mobile dashboarding. These and other differentiating capabilities will be more accessible and drive greater value when combined with the company’s future investments in its user interface.
Tagetik offers a CPM solution with functionality including financial and operational planning, consolidation and close, internal and management reporting, external reporting and compliance, as well as analytics. Customers are attracted to the single platform that supports its solutions and allows for easier use of the full suite of offerings.
Tagetik offers both on-premise and cloud deployment options, which is becoming of growing importance to CPM users. The company also supports integration capabilities with SAP, and with Microsoft SharePoint, allowing users to take advantage of Microsoft’s BI functionality. Page 9 © 2015 Nucleus Research, Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Nucleus Research is the leading provider of value-focused technology research and advice. NucleusResearch.com
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In April, Tagetik released available integration with Qlik, a BI provider. Qlik is well known for its usability for non-data scientists and Nucleus expects that this release will help Tagetik to improve its positioning for the next Matrix. The company has the potential to reach a range of users as it continues to improve its user interface.
Experts include Axiom EPM and SAS.
Axiom EPM offers a full portfolio of performance management solutions on one platform with capabilities including analytics, modelling, and optimization for long range planning, reporting and forecasting, consolidations, capital planning, and profitability and cost management. With strong integration provided by a singular platform, Axiom is able to provide its users with a full set of capabilities, which are available in the cloud or on premise.
In March, Axiom announced the release of Axiom EPM 8.0, which is the newest version of the company’s flagship offering. One of its most notable new features is the ability to operate with an Excel user interface option that is fully integrated with the back end database in the Microsoft Azure cloud platform. This will make the company’s solution more accessible to a wider range of users because it will be more scalable while still providing strong functionality.
Axiom offers a range of industry-specific capabilities including cost accounting and service line analytics for healthcare, profitability and funds transfer pricing for banking, and student aid planning in higher education. In addition, users will be able to customize their solutions with tools that provide task panes, menu bars, favorites, and personalized home pages. This is a key functionality enhancement that will allow for users to configure solutions to their individual needs, leading to an increase in productivity as well as a higher adoption rate.
As this is Axiom’s first appearance in the Matrix, Nucleus believes the company can quickly gain traction in the market by leveraging its functionality in the cloud with a more modern user interface.
SAS Performance Management offers integrated budgeting, planning, and reporting, workforce management, procurement analysis, campaign management, customer analytics, and marketing performance management as well as IT resource, service, and cost management. The solution focuses on providing users with an analytical look at the processes of an organization across multiple departments utilizing both historical trends and forecasting simulations. Page 10 © 2015 Nucleus Research, Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Nucleus Research is the leading provider of value-focused technology research and advice. NucleusResearch.com
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The solution is built on the SAS Enterprise Intelligence Platform, which integrates and cleanses data. Some of its capabilities include taking the model of a project and producing a detailed schedule with controls, visibility, and integration with calendars. Customers report that having access to a number of embedded analytics capabilities has been a key differentiator in their use of the CPM solution. With a higher level analysis, they are able to make decisions based on a
SAS offers a feature-rich CPM solution which can provide users with a broad range of capabilities. The company has been making efforts to provide better usability by integrating a number of capabilities into one solution. Moving forward, Nucleus expects that further investment in its user interface will continue to drive greater value by leveraging easier navigation to increase productivity.
Core providers include arcplan, Centage, and KCI Computing.
The arcplan Application Server is the primary platform for deploying its integrated CPM and BI solutions. Arcplan Edge, a CPM solution that has an Excel-based user interface, shortens the budgeting process by automating manual processes. The CPM Web portal allows users to access functionality, such as workflow management and reporting, online. The features are offered as pre-built capabilities but can also be customized for the needs of individual organizations. The solution also promotes collaboration and supports multiple data sources including Oracle Essbase (versions 6-11), IBM Cognos TM1, and SAP BW with Integrated Planning. The company has made a number of announcements since the last Matrix including:
In March, arcplan merged with Longview, a company that offers CPM and tax provisioning solutions. The move will couple arcplan’s data visualization and dashboarding capabilities with Longview’s functionality including financial planning, management reporting, statutory consolidation, disclosure management, tax data collection, as well as tax provisioning, reporting, and planning.
In February, arcplan announced a partnership with Theobald Software, which is an SAP connector specialist. Arcplan is certified for SAP HANA and SAP NetWeaver and the partnership will improve data streams for the eight different modules for data extraction from SAP.
In November, arcplan announced the release of arcplan 8.2, a solution that enables Oracle Exadata Ready, Pracle Exalytics Ready, Oracle Database Appliance Ready, and Oracle VM Ready status through Oracle PartnerNetwork. This will encourage improved use of arcplan for Oracle databases.
Nucleus expects that the recent merger will play a key role in improving arcplan’s position Page 11 © 2015 Nucleus Research, Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Nucleus Research is the leading provider of value-focused technology research and advice. NucleusResearch.com
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in future Matrices. Arcplan will be able to leapfrog over some of its competitors by
leveraging the strengths of Longview.
Centage offers CPM solutions for small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) that are focused on providing automation capabilities in order to increase productivity throughout an organization. Its primary CPM product, the Budget Maestro, comes in two variations to better support the needs of smaller businesses while being more cost effective. Some of its key features include built-in business and financial analytics, scenario analysis, integrated income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow reporting, as well as automated consolidation of multiple units, locations, and products.
With the needs of SMBs in mind, Centage puts its efforts into making these capabilities require as little IT support as possible. As a result, organizations with limited resources are able to configure the product without having to resort to complicated coding.
In March, the company announced new integration capabilities between Budget Maestro and Microsoft Dynamics AX. This will facilitate the automated population of chart accounts, actual ending balances, non-financial balances, and historical and actual data without requiring the assistance of IT. In addition, the transfer of information can go back to Microsoft Dynamics AX with the ability to transfer versions of the budget or transfer back into the ERP system. With this capability, users of Centage and AX will be able to experience productivity gains and a reduction in human error.
In March, Centage also announced new integration capabilities with Microsoft Dynamics GP. Some of the features included in this integration include a one-click migration of general ledger transactions, the ability to choose the degree of detail that is transferred, and drill-down to the transaction level of actuals. This will be appealing to many SMBs because GP caters more to smaller sized organizations.
Nucleus expects that moving forward, Centage will be able to improve their positioning in the Matrix with some updates to its user interface. Although slightly below average on functionality, it is well-suited to the needs of SMBs and will continue to provide a strong offering for that market.
KCI Computing offers a CPM solution focused on the primary functionalities of a performance management solution with an Excel-based user interface. The company has a solid foundation of drill-down capabilities, and also supports a number of different databases allowing for aggregated insights. In addition, KCI Computing has a licensing model that is clear and easy for users to understand and predict the total cost of ownership. The company has not made any major product announcements since the last Page 12 © 2015 Nucleus Research, Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Nucleus Research is the leading provider of value-focused technology research and advice. NucleusResearch.com
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Matrix, and Nucleus expects that in order to remain a competitor in the market it will have to make investments in its functionality.