I had a client approach me this week with a problem they aren’t sure Hyperion can handle. I’ve heard some, but not all of the challenges and so far it sounds do-able. Of course, projects that challenge my abilities are what I love. My last major client had four consulting companies come in and tell them that what they wanted was impossible. I architected a solution during a planning session lasting a couple of days. Just under two years later and we’re on phase 3 of the project. The initial implementation went so well that we’re preparing it to roll out worldwide. The design is similar to what I came up with originally. Can I always do that? No. Do I like the challenge? Oh, yes.
There are two types of Hyperion implementations; Basic and Complicated (Either can be fast or slow)
Basic is out of the box. Minimal customization. Every EPM company has accelerators. The question to ask yourself is if you will be happy with the end result. If your needs are basic and you want a fast, cheap implementation, this is the way to go. You might need to change your business to do things around the software, but this may be ok. We have competitors that will do this for a flat rate, but we rarely do. While competitive in price, we believe that straight out of the box solutions are lacking for most companies. Some customization is always necessary. That doesn’t mean months of extra work, but enough customization to make sure it handles all of your needs.
Complicated is often more fun and interesting for me. It requires me to learn more about the business that I am modeling. This is the reason companies use Brass Tacks. We can handle the impossible. These solutions often give clients more than they expect. Combined with training, the dollar savings are often enormous and worth the investment.
As I said in my posting about fast or slow implementations, a lot of the difference is the vision. How much customization is required makes a huge difference.
I’m knowledgeable with most of the budgeting/forecasting softwares on the market. There are ones that are competitive with Hyperion for simple installations, but none who come close on flexibility and customization. The primary reason is the back-end database, Essbase. As someone who started with Essbase database development, and learned the configurable pieces around it later, the theory of design is paramount. It’s a prime reason that I recommend using experienced consultants for Hyperion solutions.
Oracle markets Hyperion to be an easy installation software. While vanilla implementations can be easy, I strongly believe that it’s the ability to customize the solution to the business need that sets Oracle Hyperion software apart. Those of you who are reading this from Oracle, I’d be interested to know your opinion on the matter.