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What Drives Your Business? Planning Software Can Reveal Surprising Answers


Do you know what drives your business? You may think you do, but often the numbers tell a different story. We encounter this scenario frequently when implementing planning, budgeting, and forecasting systems at some of the world’s largest companies. It can be a humbling revelation, but one that is essential to confront for business success.

For example, we recently worked with a billion-dollar healthcare company focused on pharmaceuticals and long-term care for individuals with chronic illness. Their planning systems were largely Excel-based — a common setup that creates a decentralized view of data, one where analysts churn through budgeting and forecasting without much visibility into what financials reveal about business.

Caught up in day-to-day operations, management felt that long-term care took priority as a key business driver. But after implementing Hyperion Planning, we found something different to be true.

Analyzing key business drivers

One of the most powerful aspects of Oracle’s planning software is its ability to provide driver-based scenarios, where Excel becomes secondary and a company can analyze their data from a business perspective, versus preparing it. Drivers are more uniform and controlled, allowing you to put processes in place that focus more time on analytics.

The technology lends agility to the enterprise planning process by quickly aligning financial plans, models, and forecasts across cost centers and lines of business, enabling decisions to be made at a speed which business demands. The impact of changes to key plan drivers and assumptions can be evaluated instantaneously, and revisions made available immediately to all stakeholders without the reliability risks from manual interventions. Its powerful calculation engine can be used to express a range of business requirements, from simple arithmetic formulae to complex allocations.

A surprising revelation

After walking through the data, we found long-term care had little effect on the business, incongruent with management’s expectations — long-term care was, in fact, toward the bottom of a list of ten drivers. What emerged from our implementation was a newfound importance placed on previously off-the-radar brand-to-generic pharmaceuticals. This element of their business lifts margins and creates a significant, positive impact on business.

The discovery was surprising but now allows them to refocus and move forward with confidence. What will your company discover about its business? Contact us to learn more about Oracle planning, budgeting and forecasting solutions.


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