Oracle EPM – Enterprise or Standard? The guide to why you should always go for Enterprise

Oracle EPM – Enterprise or Standard? The guide to why you should always go for Enterprise

Published by: Sinead Woods
Published date: 23rd Apr 2020
Categories: EPM Finance Oracle The Cloud

Late last year Oracle launched their new Enterprise and Standard offerings for EPM (Enterprise Performance Management) in the Cloud. These changes have caused some confusion to existing and new users as Oracle has changed their offering model. This blog will explain what was there before and what is available now and the rationale for why you should always go for EPM Cloud Enterprise Edition.

History Lesson – PBCS and EPBCS

Oracle PBCS is the acronym for the EPM Cloud product also known as Planning Budgeting Cloud Service. PBCS was the first Oracle EPM product on cloud and is an application based on Oracle Hyperion Planning that supports enterprise-wide planning, budgeting, and forecasting in the cloud and uses Essbase as its underlying database.

As in the Oracle EPM/Hyperion on-premises and Cloud solutions PBCS offers integrations with Microsoft Excel, Word, Outlook, and PowerPoint using “SmartView”. This has always been very popular within the general on-premise user community which essentially means that end users can still leverage the power of Essbase but through Excel and other MS Office products.

EPBCS (Enterprise Planning and Budgeting cloud Service) was the enterprise equivalent of PBCS and offered pre-canned, best practice models of planning and budgeting modules for Financials, Workforce, Capex and Project planning. You also had the ability to create adhoc Essbase models which did give a good degree of flexibility.

As well as this, the other components of the EPM cloud solution were ARCS (Account reconciliation), TRCS(Tax), PCMCS(Profitability), FCCS (Financial Consolidation), Reporting (EPRCS) and were used and sold separately. However, this involved some integration, as all modules sat on different pods it was tricky to navigate between systems!

In general, for any projects we implemented we went with PBCS as customers liked its flexibility. You only had four Essbase databases available in your application but that normally was more than enough, it’s ability to import data using data management (on-premises FCCS from the leading HFM product) and it was significantly a lower cost per user than EPBCS which always helps when moving organisations to the cloud.

The Future – Enterprise and Standard

Last year Oracle discontinued the PBCS and EPBCS offering and replaced by Oracle EPM Standard and Enterprise. This was big news as people had to start thinking a little differently in terms of choosing what to adopt.

Basically, the rationale between freeform planning in PBCS changed in that a PBCS model was not available, only EPBCS. However, the flexibility was kept by enabling unseeded models in the offering. This meant the flexibility is still there but at different levels. For Standard you now get the following business processes available but you can only select one:

  • Planning – This is effectively EPBCS including: –
    • Capital
    • Financials
    • Projects
    • Workforce
  • Scenario Modeling
  • Account Reconciliation
  • Financial Consolidation and Close (with default, built-in calculations)
  • Transaction Matching
  • Custom Consolidations
  • Narrative Reporting
  • Disclosure Management (XBRL reporting)

Essentially, five seeded cubes (hybrid) and one seeded cube (ASO) for enabling the modules above only (hybrid and ASO are types of Essbase database, essentially Hybrid lends itself to Planning and Budgeting. ASO lends itself to large reporting databases)

One free (unseeded) hybrid BSO cube and one free (unseeded) ASO cube – These are your adhoc models (formerly PBCS).

For Enterprise you get all the business processes PLUS more adhoc models PLUS additional pods which you can use for the same business processes again! Here are the details: –

  • Planning Business Process
    • Capital
    • Financials
    • Projects
    • Workforce
    • Custom
    • Freeform
  • Scenario Modeling
  • Groovy support for customizing business rules
  • Max up to 13 cubes
  • Account Reconciliation
  • Transaction Matching
  • Financial Consolidation and Close
    • Default and Custom Consolidation Calculations
    • Support for Complex Structures
    • Integration of Close Manager with other Oracle Products
  • Narrative Reporting
  • Disclosure Management
  • Enterprise Data Management (with maximum 5000 hosted records)
  • Profitability and Cost Management
  • Tax Reporting

The subscription Is more expensive than Standard and for what you get it’s really a no brainer to adopt Enterprise. Typically, some or all these processes are key to any organisation so having them on one central platform, in the Cloud, using the latest IT infrastructure and managed by experts should cause most organisations that need an Enterprise solution to choose Oracle. The platform will always be live with the latest versions and will have new functionality and features applied monthly thus ensuing you are always up to date.

In our next blog we will start to dig into each business process explaining what it is, what it does and how it adds value to organisations looking to adopt the latest and greatest EPM technology.

About the Author

Brian Somers is currently a Technology Advocate for EPM and BI for Codec helping organisations adopt the correct solutions to improve and enhance their Enterprise Performance Management and Business Intelligence functions. Brian has worked for Codec for 28 years advising on technologies such as Oracle/Hyperion, Infor, SAP and Microsoft in multiple industries including Finance, Manufacturing, Transport, Local Government, Aircraft Leasing, Insurance and Education.