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        Robert Kugel's Analyst Perspectives

        My colleague Mark Smith and I recently chatted with executives of Tidemark, a company in the early stages of providing business analytics for decision-makers. It has a roster of experienced executive talent and solid financial backing. There’s a strategic link with Workday that reflects a common background at the operational and investor levels. As it gets rolling, Tidemark is targeting large and very companies as customers for its cloud-based system for analyzing data. It can automate alerts...

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        Topics: Big Data, Data Warehousing, Master Data Management, Performance Management, Planning, Predictive Analytics, GRC, Operational Performance Management (OPM), Budgeting, Risk Analytics, Analytics, Business Analytics, Business Collaboration, Business Intelligence, Business Mobility, Cloud Computing, Data Governance, Data Integration, In-Memory Computing, Information Management, Mobility, Business Performance Management (BPM), Customer Performance Management (CPM), Financial Performance Management (FPM), Risk, Sales Performance Management (SPM), Workday, Workforce Performance Management (WPM), Financial Performance Management, Integrated Business Planning, Strata+Hadoop

        Management decision-making typically involves a three-step process of inform, analyze and act. In the earliest days of what came to be known as business intelligence, developers created decision support systems that provided information and analytics to help executives and high-level managers choose the best course of action. Working with numbers rather than gut instinct still is viewed as a best practice. After all, a pilot who doesn’t trust his or her instruments is heading for an accident.

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        Topics: Big Data, Performance Management, Planning, Modeling, Office of Finance, Operational Performance Management (OPM), Budgeting, closed loop, contingency planning, driver-based, driver-based planning, Analytics, Business Analytics, Business Collaboration, Business Mobility, Cloud Computing, In-memory, Business Performance Management (BPM), Customer Performance Management (CPM), Financial Performance Management (FPM), Sales Performance Management (SPM), Supply Chain Performance Management (SCPM), Workforce Performance Management (WPM), best pracices, business value, cash management, challenge, financial planning

        At its annual Influencer’s Summit in Boston, SAP offered multiple perspectives on where the company’s strategy and products are heading. Overall, I was struck by the essential similarities to its message on its strategic direction a decade ago. The overarching objective in its roadmap now, as then, is to have information technology increasingly adapt to the needs of individual users and how they choose to execute established/repetitive or ad-hoc processes, rather than forcing them to adapt to...

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        Topics: Performance Management, Planning, Predictive Analytics, SAP, ERP, GRC, Office of Finance, Operational Performance Management (OPM), Business Analytics, Business Collaboration, Business Mobility, Cloud Computing, Enterprise Software, In-memory, Mobility, Business Performance Management (BPM), finance, Financial Performance Management (FPM), Risk, Sales Performance Management (SPM), Supply Chain Performance Management (SCPM), Workforce Performance Management (WPM), Financial Performance Management

        I thought of writing a note on this topic when multinational corporations started to withdraw their deposits from eurozone banks, but the pessimism that event engendered was short-lived. Now, as the monetary crisis deepens in Europe, it’s perhaps time to ask what your company would do if parts of its financial system implodes. You may think that your company will not be affected because it doesn’t do business with the eurozone. Or you may believe that it’s unlikely to happen and therefore not...

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        Topics: Big Data, Performance Management, Planning, Social Media, Modeling, Office of Finance, Operational Performance Management (OPM), Budgeting, contingency planning, crisis, driver-based, Analytics, Business Analytics, Business Collaboration, Business Mobility, Cloud Computing, Business Performance Management (BPM), Customer Performance Management (CPM), Financial Performance Management (FPM), Sales Performance Management (SPM), Supply Chain Performance Management (SCPM), Workforce Performance Management (WPM), best pracices, business value, cash management, challenge, financial planning

        Doing one’s homework is vital in buying business software. However, unless you’re replacing a relatively simple application, it’s hard to know exactly what to evaluate. Indeed, if people in a company given this task don’t have experience in using a specific type of business application or don’t understand how new or improved functionality will help execute business processes better, they may do a poor job of assessing the available alternatives. Third-party consultants may be helpful, but their...

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        Topics: Performance Management, Sales, Human Capital Management, Office of Finance, Operational Performance Management (OPM), Zilliant, Model N, Navetti, Nomis Solutions, PROS Pricing, Servigistics, Signal Demand, Analytics, Business Analytics, Oracle, Business Performance Management (BPM), Customer Performance Management (CPM), Financial Performance Management (FPM), Sales Performance Management (SPM), Vendavo, Price Optimization, Profitability, Software, Vistaar Technologies

        I believe that one of the more important analytical applications that a company can implement is profitability management. IBM Cognos offers Profitability Modeling and Optimization as part of its Cognos 10 offering that my colleague has assessed. As I’ve noted, most people in a corporation are focused on profitability, but not necessarily in a way that optimizes results across the organization in a day-to-day, consistent fashion. Those responsible for each component piece that contributes to...

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        Topics: Performance Management, Forecast, Modeling, Office of Finance, Operational Performance Management (OPM), enterprise profitability management, Business Analytics, IBM, Business Performance Management (BPM), Cognos, Financial Performance Management (FPM), Sales Performance Management (SPM), Workforce Performance Management (WPM), Financial Services, Profitability

        At first thought, it seems as if having a mountain of cash to manage is a problem most companies would like to have, but it’s a real problem nevertheless. To be sure, the large majority of companies are able to deal with their cash and short-term and longer-term monetary investments because the amounts are small enough to be manageable. Indeed, many companies, especially smaller ones, face the opposite problem and spend more time focused on their uncertain funding requirements. Still, over the...

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        Topics: Performance Management, Office of Finance, credit, Tax, Business Analytics, Business Performance Management (BPM), Financial Performance Management (FPM), Risk, cash management, GAAP

        As its name suggests, demand-based pricing is a method that uses the buyer’s demand, based on an estimate of a good’s or service’s perceived value to the buyer, as the central element in setting price. Pricing strategies are most important because they can have a disproportionate impact (positive and negative) on a company’s bottom line. Managing prices has always been an activity of keen interest, but it has become even more so over the past decade as a result of the constrained pricing...

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        Topics: Performance Management, Sales, Human Capital Management, Office of Finance, Operational Performance Management (OPM), Analytics, Business Analytics, Business Performance Management (BPM), Financial Performance Management (FPM), Sales Performance Management (SPM), Price Optimization, Profitability, Software

        I hadn’t thought about the exact definition of “driver-based planning” until the question came up in the context of our planning benchmark research showing that only 6% of companies with more than 100 employees do driver-based planning. Broadly defined, the term could be applied to the use of any spreadsheet-planning model because these almost always have built-in volume-times-price formulas, which are components of driver-based plans. However, this is not what most people have in mind when...

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        Topics: Big Data, Performance Management, Planning, Modeling, Office of Finance, Operational Performance Management (OPM), Budgeting, driver-based, Analytics, Business Analytics, Business Collaboration, Business Performance Management (BPM), Financial Performance Management (FPM), Sales Performance Management (SPM), Workforce Performance Management (WPM), best pracices, business value, cash management, challenge, financial planning

        I recently participated in a panel discussion about the rise in the use of rolling forecasts in corporate planning. I’m not surprised by this trend; I have encouraged it. Ever since the financial crisis started three years ago, I’ve been writing that companies should rethink how they plan and budget to respond to increasing business volatility. Rolling forecasts are useful because they continually extend the formal planning horizon out more than a year rather than having it stop abruptly at the...

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        Topics: Big Data, Performance Management, Planning, Social Media, Office of Finance, Operational Performance Management (OPM), Budgeting, IBP, Business Analytics, Business Collaboration, Business Mobility, Cloud Computing, Business Performance Management (BPM), CFO, COO, Customer Performance Management (CPM), Financial Performance Management (FPM), Sales Performance Management (SPM), Supply Chain Performance Management (SCPM), Workforce Performance Management (WPM), Integrated Business Planning
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