While we often reflect on the lack of penetration of EPM solutions, it turns out that a lack of technology or tools isn't the cause. In fact, in most enterprises there are far too many tools.
For years, EPM tools have been purchased predominately on a departmental basis, by line‐of‐business or functional management. Sometimes, IT has been involved in the process and sometimes not. In other instances, IT has procured its own solutions, adding to the disarray. Over the years (and in most enterprises), this has led to myriad siloed implementations. Each department has its own tool with unique user paradigms, proprietary formats and metadata, different data extracts and transformations, and business semantics.
The costs associated with this sort of fragmentation are extreme. There are the direct costs, such as software licenses and maintenance. And then there are the indirect costs associated with supporting multiple products: more complex and time‐consuming internal support, change control, and the training and cross training of users.
Finally, there is the less tangible—but far more critical—effect: the impact on the business, which includes operating inefficiencies, inconsistent treatment and leverage of common customers, competing internal strategies, and misalignment with corporate direction.
Part of the answer to this problem is the standardization and consolidation of EPM tools and technology.
Standardization in this ...