Challenges in Financial Planning

It’s well known that many organizations invest a tremendous amount of time and energy preparing the annual operating plan. Mature finance organizations have moved beyond the annual plan to more useful monthly forecasts, rolling plans, and predictive analysis. Regardless of frequency, the budget and forecast cycle is often beset with the same issues:

Errors manipulating data in spreadsheets

Fragile formulas, data security, limited versions, and little-to-no collaboration features are just a few areas where a spreadsheet falls short of purpose-built planning solutions.

Budget is too detailed or too summarized

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Operating units build detailed models using local accounts, departments, customers, and employees. Corporate finance teams then consolidate these to a level too summarized for meaningful operational analysis. Companies often struggle to find the right balance or serve all constituents with a single platform.

Difficult root cause analysis

Variances to the plan can be the result of market volatility, unexpected wins or losses, or simple human error. But how can you tell what’s actionable? Purpose-built planning systems give executives and line of business managers insight into root causes at the division, region, country, customer, and even department level.

Changing data sources

Management makes an acquisition mid-month. Another business unit is upgrading its ERP. Another business unit wants to change its product segments. Data governance and integration tools can eliminate the associated stress with changing data and accelerate the reporting cycle.

Cloud services like Oracle Enterprise Planning and Budgeting Cloud Service (EPBCS) are well ahead of these challenges and make them routine. And the companies adopting these tools are freeing up finance personnel to focus on business growth and profitability and IT personnel to focus business continuity.

In our new white paper, we take an in-depth look at EPBCS including the four business process modules, administration topics, and deployment considerations. If you’re looking to get a head start on finance transformation, this white paper will answer many of your questions about moving to the cloud and illustrate why Oracle EPBCS is a significant differentiator for Oracle.

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