Companies have recognized that spreadsheet-based planning, budgeting and forecasting is costly, time-consuming and error-prone. It is not possible to use advanced techniques, complex calculations and multidimensional analysis.
Planning should be a process that is constantly ongoing, new plans should be tested and altered based on new information. This data should be consolidated quickly and distributed immediately. This will facilitate more informed decision making.
Budgeting and forecasting in a challenging, constantly changing economic environment can be difficult. It can require constant revisions and changes often on a monthly basis, sometimes even more frequently. Changes often need to be made to product lines or services to achieve a company's goals, and this information needs to be available in days not weeks or months.
The solution is a planning, budgeting and forecasting solution that is:
- Adaptive – the ability to rapidly change models and respond to business changes as often as necessary
- Timely – information is always current as contributors are entering information into a central planning database
- Integrated – all systems reside on one platform
- Collaborative – web-based and distributed planning
- Led by Finance – they are responsible and have the best understanding of what is required
- Efficient – so that less time is spent managing data and more time managing the business
- Accurate – so there are fewer errors or missing components
Cognos TM1 addresses the full planning cycle with:
- A personal analytics workspace combining planning, analysis, reporting and personal dash boarding in a single interface
- A guided modeling environment that eases development and deployment of planning, analysis and forecasting solutions
- Patented, 64-bit, in-memory OLAP for enterprise scalability
- A choice of interfaces including Microsoft Excel, Cognos TM1 Web, Cognos TM1 Contributor and Cognos Insight for non-Excel users
- Connections to IBM Cognos Business Intelligence for a single, integrated platform
- Role-based security for multiple users and user types. Advanced predefined selection options ensure that users see only those portions of the plan that they need to see
- A choice of distributed or centralized planning deployments for a wide range of users and interactions
- Full Unicode support that accommodates string lengths expanded beyond 255 characters.
- Capability to extend ERP investments with the IBM Cognos data orchestration tool. This tool easily connects to data warehouses, Microsoft Excel worksheets or any ODBC-compliant database