With the influx of technologies available, the finance department's role has changed. New tools and technologies appear to enter the market daily. CFOs must focus beyond just their company’s portfolio. As a corporate performance management (CPM) consultant I see CFO’s investigating, leveraging and investing in technologies that operate more efficiently and cost-effectively. Their job, now more than ever, is to set their companies up for the future.
The cost of maintaining multiple CPM applications and upgrading them weighs on organizations and investing in new technology can be risky. Every day, CFOs and finance leaders are faced with these decisions that impact their organizations. Do we upgrade now or later? What do we need in our new solution? What can’t we live without? How can we be more accurate with our forecasts?
WESCO Distribution, Inc., a longtime client since 2014, had one of those decisions to make: Should they continue with their current on-premise solution with servers nearing their useful life, move to the cloud with their current solution provider, or make a bold move and explore other CPM options. When evaluating other CPM vendors, WESCO looked for:
A unified platform that is flexible enough to handle WESCO’s unique set of requirements
A solution that is configurable and can be improved on over time with pre-built solutions that help minimize development time
A solution that is easy to manage and provides readily available system related data that tracks user and administrator actions
After careful considerations and analysis, WESCO selected OneStream as their unified planning, forecasting and reporting platform. Let’s take a closer look at some of the reasons why WESCO selected OneStream and also review a few examples of how their processes improved.
Flexibility is where OneStream thrives. For the most part, if you can dream it, you can do it in OneStream.
Do your Entities plan at different levels of the account hierarchy vs. corporate? No problem.
Do you need to have a dynamic account calculate one way before March of 2019 and a different way for the future? Easy!
Would you like to drill back to your source database or source file and see additional fields or level of detail that may be more unstructured and isn’t a good candidate for a dimension? Can do.
Would you like to provide end users the ability to see how an account with a member formula is calculated with each component of the calculation? Just a right-click away.
Would you like to choose when to upgrade to the latest software version and have OneStream support take care of it for you in a couple of hours? You got it.
Looking to re-use column and row templates for forms, reports and visual dashboards? Done.
For WESCO, their forecast process was improved by leveraging OneStream’s dashboarding capabilities. Planners are now able to enter their drivers, sales, OPEX, statistical metrics and high level balance sheet accounts in one dashboard, customized by the planners role. Planners are also able to review their forecast for variances and trends against the prior forecast, current year budget and prior year actuals in a periodic or YTD view.
OneStream is able to handle sophicated calculations. For an example, let’s take a look at some of WESCO’s:
Shipment Type Analysis:
WESCO breaks down their sales into three categories: Direct Ship, Stock and Special Order. Each type of sale, defined by the shipment type, has different margins / profitability associated with them.
With OneStream, WESCO is able to see the dollar impact associated with the current sales at the prior period's sales mix and margin. This analysis is calculated dynamically and is available at the branch, district, region or operating group level.
This calculation helps WESCO better understand how their sales mix can affect their profitability. They use this information to put programs in place to help drive sales to more profitable areas of their business.
FX Impact Analysis:
With a footprint in 14 countries, WESCO is susceptible to fluctuations in currency. WESCO utilizes OneStream to determine how currency fluctuation has affected its profitability based on the prior year's currency rates. This calculation also factors in the number of working days in the previous year to help deliver an "apples to apples" comparison.
Using a combination of OneStream’s downloadable MarketPlace solutions, administrators are able to track user interactions within the application, including log in and log out, what cube views or dashboard were launched, what data has been modified, when it was modified and who modified it. Additionally, administrators are also able to see metadata modifications, mapping modifications and security updates all in prebuilt reports.
The deeper I get into OneStream, the more excited I am about the solutions we are able to create and deliver to our clients. OneStream’s flexibility to meet a variety of needs makes it a leader in the CPM/ EPM field. Don’t take my word for it: You can refer to Gartner’s magic quadrants that list OneStream as a visionary for both Cloud Finance Planning and Analysis and Cloud Financial Close solutions.
Today’s finance leaders harness technology to drive digital transformation and lead their companies to the next frontier. With OneStream, the possibilities are endless.