Busting 6 Top Performance Management and EPM Software Myths

Before searching for an enterprise performance management (EPM) software solution for your company, it’s essential to have all of the information up front. Here are a few top myths regarding performance management, so you can have the knowledge you need to find the right solution for your company.

Myth: EPM software is best for large organizations.

Truth: While of course large organizations can experience tremendous advantages from EPM software, small and mid-sized companies can also benefit. If you are bogged down in spreadsheets and your your budget cycle is taking longer than it should, if your forecasting methods are prone to error, or if your business model needs to respond quickly to industry or consumer trends, then EPM software can be incredibly helpful.

No matter the size of a company, EPM software can streamline budgeting, planning, forecasting and reporting.

Myth: Enterprise performance management projects involve a similar methodology as other IT projects.

Truth: Enterprise performance management (EPM) projects differ from other IT projects in a number of ways, and it’s essential to be aware of this in advance. For example, EPM solutions can be deployed much faster than ERP systems. EPM solutions leverage data from ERP, CRM and other data sources, and are not as disruptive to your business. They can also be deployed in an incremental fashion, addressing one business process such as budgeting and planning in Finance. After achieving success with your initial project, you can expand the scope and address other business processes or roll EPM out into other departments, such as Sales.

By assuming the projects will be similar, businesses sometimes approach performance management projects utilizing the same methods as IT projects. In reality, it will require different resources and methods, so businesses need to enter into EPM projects with a fresh perspective, rather than relying on old practices.

Myth: EPM software is expensive to manage.

Truth: Most businesses find they actually save money with EPM software. For example, EPM software will greatly expedite the budgeting cycle, allowing Finance and LOB analysts to spend less time on budgeting and more time on business analytics. Additionally, it provides enhanced modeling capabilities that will reduce the risk of business decisions, while increasing the accuracy of forecasts and reports, both of which will save businesses money. Cloud-based EPM can further your savings potential by providing a faster time to benefit, lower cost of ownership vs. on-premises solutions, and a safe, scalable platform for future growth.

Myth: EPM software will require a huge learning curve.

Truth: If you aren’t currently using EPM software, then you are likely using Excel for budgeting, planning and reporting. A number of EPM software applications offer a spreadsheet-like interface that closely mimics Excel, so your team can experience the familiarity needed to master the software quickly, while benefiting from the added functions and advanced modeling capabilities that will enhance your forecasting abilities.

Myth: EPM dashboards are the same as EPM scorecards.

Truth: While many people use these terms interchangeably, this isn’t actually accurate. There are a lot of parallels between dashboards and scorecards, but the two serve different functions and shouldn’t be confused. Scorecards are reports that contain information regarding key performance indicators (KPI) and performance targets linked to the strategic goals of the organization. Dashboards serve as an interactive, graphical interface for reports and metrics designed to meet the needs of departments and managers across the enterprise.

Myth: EPM software isn’t that necessary to businesses.

Truth: Particularly for dynamic companies or rapidly growing companies, you simply can’t gain the agility, advanced modeling capabilities, and accuracy you need from Excel. To eliminate manual errors, create more reliable financial data, better prepare for your financial future, and respond quickly to industry or market changes, EPM software is indispensable.

There continues to be a number of myths and misinformation surrounding EPM software and enterprise performance management, which leads businesses to adopt the technology with an inaccurate perception or avoid the technology altogether. By utilizing cloud-based EPM software, businesses of all sizes can rapidly experience enormous benefits. With increased efficiency, decreased cost of ownership, enhanced agility, and improved accuracy, you can gain complete control of your company’s finances and make better decisions for the future.

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