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Craig Schiff

I am very excited about this opportunity to share my perspectives and experience in my BeyeNETWORK Blog. For those of you who may not have read my articles and newsletters over the past few years, I hope you will appreciate a vendor-independent perspective on all things related to Business Performance Management (BPM). I focus on key topics organizations should consider throughout their BPM project lifecycle, from early stage requirements definition and justification, key measure development, vendor selection and finally, successful deployment and rollout. Of course, market trends and vendor updates will also be part of the mix. Please stop by on a regular basis to see what's new, and to make this interactive, please share your opinions. If you have a specific question, contact me directly at cschiff@bpmpartners.com.

About the author >

Craig, President and CEO of BPM Partners, is a pioneer in business performance management (BPM). Craig helped create and define the field as it evolved from business intelligence and analytic applications into BPM. He has worked with BPM and related technologies for more than 20 years, first as a founding member at IMRS/Hyperion Software (now Hyperion Solutions) and later cofounded OutlookSoft where he was President and CEO.

Craig is a frequent author on BPM topics and monthly columnist for the BeyeNETWORK. He has led several jointly produced webcasts with Business Finance Magazine including "Beyond the Hype: The Truth about BPM Vendors," the three-part vendor review entitled "BPM Xpo" and "BPM 101: Navigating the Treacherous Waters of Business Performance Management." He is a recipient of the prestigious Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award. BPM Partners is a vendor-independent professional services firm focused exclusively on BPM, providing expertise that helps companies successfully evaluate and deploy BPM systems. Craig can be reached at cschiff@bpmpartners.com.

Editor's Note: More articles and resources are available in Craig's BeyeNETWORK Expert Channel. Be sure to visit today!


The trends for 2015 we identified a year ago have largely come to pass and continue to be a factor in the performance management space. We believe the three new trends described below will have a significant impact on performance management in 2016.


Combination of BPM and BI

 This is a natural progression as users of performance management (BPM) systems are demanding more and better analytics and starting to request predictive analytics specifically. Their needs now go beyond just dashboards and data visualization.  In addition, IT executives involved in BPM vendor selection projects are looking for BI to address custom use cases related to the core data in the system. What this leads to is a preference for performance management vendors that also offer integrated and robust business intelligence capabilities. While all vendors offer some BI-like functionality and most are built on a platform of BI tools, the need is for access to more complete and exposed BI functionality.

The vendors that benefit most from this trend are those that have acquired or partnered as resellers with BI vendors. These include Adaptive Insights (with Adaptive Discovery based on their myDials acquisition), Centage (with Analytics Maestro based on their BI-Metrix acquisition), Host Analytics with their Birst partnership, Longview with their  arcplan merger, and Tagetik with their Qlik relationship. Of course IBM, Oracle, and SAP have significant BI offerings they can bundle in with their performance management solutions as well.


Cloud as the Standard

 We have now reached the point where cloud has become the default deployment option in most performance management deals. At BPM Partners we did not encounter a single deal this year where the cloud option was off the table. Every customer we worked with was open to the cloud and the majority had it as their preference. In some instances they would only consider an on-premise solution if it had significantly better pricing or functionality when compared to the cloud-based alternatives. Recognizing this trend a number of vendors have been re-architecting for the cloud, those with multiple deployment options have been leading with the cloud, and even the largest vendors have introduced new cloud-based performance management offerings. We doubt that we will see any vendors left that don't offer a cloud option by the end of 2016.

Vendors that benefit most from this trend include the cloud-based performance management pioneers Adaptive Insights and Host Analytics, as well as the newer cloud vendors focused on large enterprises - Anaplan and Tidemark, and XLerant focused on smaller organizations. Tagetik and Vena Solutions have largely moved away from their on-premise options (unless pressed) and now lead with their cloud versions. SAP and Oracle Hyperion have introduced new native cloud planning solutions in the past year as well.


Availability of Pre-Built Solutions

This is a trend that has really been picking up steam. The idea is to pre-package specific processes or industry-specific needs so as to reduce the time and effort required to configure your new performance management system. The offerings are referred to by many different names. They include: blueprints, shell systems, templates, best practices, apps, starter kits, accelerators, solutions, etc. They have one primary goal - to demonstrate how to set-up the system to accomplish a specific task or series of tasks, and in so doing to reduce the time and cost involved in implementation,  shorten the time to payback, and ultimately lower the total cost of ownership. Those benefits help to explain why numerous vendors have recently introduced their own versions of these pre-packaged solution sets.

Vendors that benefit most from this trend include IBM Cognos who led the way with their blueprints, Anaplan with their application models, deFacto Global by including pre-built functionality unique to particular industries in the core product itself, Longview with their Smart Client apps and pre-packaged content, OneStream Software with their self-service app store, and Tidemark with their packaged processes. There are three other vendors with unique approaches worth noting. While most of these packages are free Adaptive Insights charges for theirs. The reason is that to make their solution more useful they bundle in some best practice consulting time. AxiomEPM does something similar by bundling in embedded best practices in the form of management consulting delivering what they call 'software with a point-of-view'. On the other end of the spectrum from these pre-packaged solution sets is Altius. Instead of providing templates for you to follow or bundling in some expert consulting they go quite a bit further. They bundle in all the consulting you may require to customize their product for your particular needs at no additional cost.


While there were many other trends we observed in 2015 that will continue into 2016 we think these three are the most significant. They will help reshape the vendor landscape once again creating new leaders and laggards, and therefore should be taken into consideration when you evaluate solutions.

Posted December 22, 2015 10:10 AM
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1 Comment

A very well written article.The author has very well described the three most important methods viz cloud ,enterprise resource planning and analytics that every organization should employ to sustain in a cost effective way.

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