Enterprise Resource Planning, or ERP, software is used by businesses of all sizes to support its financial and operational business processes. Most vendors offer a menu of modules that can be combined so that data flows seamlessly from one to another, mirroring information flow through the business.
Since spreadsheets were invented in the 1980s, they have been the tool of choice for anyone doing planning and analysis. Financial analysts use them for the annual budget, the long-term strategy plan, allocations, profitability modeling etc. Sales and operations planners use them for capacity planning, sales planning, scheduling and much, much more.
If you are a long time IBM Planning Analytics (TM1) administrator, you may have developed a fondness through the years for a utility called TM1TOP. TM1TOP would tell you what your TM1 Server was up to, which was especially useful if users called to complain that it was “slow” or “hanging”.
I’d like to give a shout-out to Microsoft Excel, the venerable spreadsheet software. If your job description includes reporting, budgeting, planning or forecasting, you rely on Excel to get your job done. Period.
Google “Accounting Scandals” and you will find plenty of Top 5 and Top 10 lists that include companies like Waste Management (1998), Enron (2001) and Tyco (2002). These are famous examples where top executives were caught committing fraud, and were punished with fines and prison time.
The target audience for this blog post is anyone on IBM Cognos TM1 10.2.2, or an older release, who is looking to upgrade to IBM Planning Analytics. TM1 10.2.0 will no longer be supported by IBM after September 2018 (this year) and TM1 10.2.2 will no longer be supported after September 2019.
Topics: planning analytics
If you are still on a version of IBM Cognos TM1, it is time to plan your upgrade to its rebranded successor, IBM Planning Analytics.
Topics: planning analytics
Recently the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) started a firestorm when they published an article titled “Stop Using Excel, Finance Chiefs Tells Staffs” (https://www.wsj.com/article_email/stop-using-excel-finance-chiefs-tell-staffs-1511346601-lMyQjAxMTE3NjMzMDQzNDA4Wj/).
One of the advantages of being a Business Analytics consultant, is that you rarely know what a feasible solution looks like until you have taken the time to truly understand your client’s business, strategy and culture. This applies to financial performance management (including financial reporting, planning and customer profitability modeling), just as it does to predictive and prescriptive analytics problems which may not always directly impinge on the Office of Finance.