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Why do we have expensive planning software in the first place?

This is an important question. Some Finance Directors might be coming to the conclusion that the only ‘migration’ they want is back to Excel!

Why would anyone want to migrate back to Excel?

One good reason could be that your existing planning tool might be seen as inflexible and unresponsive to business demands. Another reason could be that the benefits of migrating to the Cloud might be understood by technical people, but the business benefits may not be so obvious to the boss.

It’s worth a moment then to put ourselves in the shoes of the boss who might be considering on the one hand going back to Excel and on the other hand going forwards to migrate Enterprise Planning into the Cloud.

One thing is for sure. The options are very different. Going back to Excel is not always the disaster that some would have us believe. It could be that the legacy planning tool has got itself into such a pickle that the best option may well be to re-group in Excel. Here the skill base of all the users can be used as a resource to get the show back on the road.

If you do wish to return to Excel, however, this should be taken as seriously as migrating to any other enterprise planning tool. A disorderly return to Excel could actually make matters worse. Make sure you maintain the discipline that we have covered in Tips 1-9 of this Cognos EP Migration journey. Even if you migrate back to Excel you are not at the end of the journey.

The Cloud beckons whatever your starting point

Why?

Because the Cloud offers you the possibility of the best of both worlds. The Cloud offers you a solution which can be both flexible and responsive to business demands, and within a framework of data you can trust.

How?

There is nothing fundamentally different to the Cloud that you don’t already have ‘on premise’. There is one obvious difference that you don’t have the overhead of your own IT hardware and support staff.

The real difference with the Cloud is far simpler – you get the ‘good stuff’ first! It’s a bit like going to the cinema. Sure you can wait until it comes out on video but for the really good stuff, you want to get it first. In this case the ‘good stuff’ is a whole new generation of budgeting ‘widgets’ which are going to render slow & unresponsive enterprise planning tools a thing of the past.

If you go down the IBM Planning Analytics route you will be getting cutting edge stuff coming out of Watson Analytics right now!

Over the coming months, Triangle will be uploading a series of budgeting widgets to the Cloud that users will be able to use ‘off the shelf’.  Thereafter, the moment Watson rolls out Google style query over the Cloud, Triangle users will be first in line to build budgeting cubes on demand.  As a sign of our commitment to and confidence in Watson Analytics, we are investing in widget production now in order to build up a library of widgets to cover all budgeting needs.

Budgeting Measures Widget

Here is a Budgeting Measures Widget.

Budgeting widget

You can define it in Excel. We can upload it into IBM Planning Analytics. From there on, you can drag and drop it into any cube you want or choose from a library of other functions suited to your business needs. This one will back solve Budget Targets into Volumes & Rates and even allows for Time Slippage to help make your Annual Budget.  All in seconds. And if that’s not an exciting prospect, I don’t know what is.

Cognos EP Migration Top 10 Tips journey

Thank you for following my Cognos EP Migration Tips 1-10. I hope they are useful. Do send your feedback and comments below to me here at Triangle .

Posted in Cognos

March 29, 2016