by Alison Weiss, May 2014
Asurvey published in a recent Oracle white paper, “Succeeding with Enterprise Performance Management in 2014,” found mobile access to enterprise performance management (EPM) systems a top trend among finance decision-makers. All but 26 percent of respondents have embraced EPM mobile applications, and two-thirds said convenience and simplified information delivery were the driving forces behind their adoption.
Oracle has two key EPM technologies that address mobility: a new Oracle Workflow EPM mobile app, and mobile web functionality available in a recent update to Oracle Hyperion Planning. Both technologies provide smartphone and tablet access to on-the-go workflow management tasks to improve decision-making and streamline financial planning and close processes.
Matthew Bradley, senior vice president of product development for EPM applications at Oracle, says finance departments are moving away from reactive accounting support activities and are taking on more-proactive financial management roles. Finance executives want to use mobile technology to manage EPM data remotely and to easily collaborate with stakeholders across the organization.
Users can easily interact with finance applications and drive the business forward without having to wait to get back to the
“Managers are no longer tied to their desks, so if they’re offsite or in a meeting, they can easily interact with finance applications and drive the business forward without having to wait to get back to the office,” says Bradley.
Both new functionalities are designed with form factor in mind. The mobile web functionality gives tablet users the ability to use approximately 80 percent of the interactive budgeting and planning functions found on the desktop version of Oracle Hyperion Planning. The design is also simplified for use on a touchscreen.
Percentage of companies that have not embraced EPM mobile applications as of 2014 (Source: “Succeeding with Enterprise Performance Management in 2014,” an Oracle white paper)
Bradley says the app’s function follows form. “Trying to access a spreadsheet on a phone is just not practical,” says Bradley. “The Oracle Workflow EPM mobile app is a very simple app that does one thing really well.”
With much financial budgeting and planning occurring at the end of the month, Bradley says it’s often a mad scramble to get everything done and approved. “Staff are under pressure to release results earlier, but you don’t want to make mistakes,” he says. “With mobility, it’s all about speed and efficiency. A manager can be on the road—for business or personal travel—and use his device to see enough information to be comfortable with the numbers, and quickly make an approval.”
Alison Weiss is a freelance writer in the San Francisco Bay Area and a frequent contributor to Profit.