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Thought Leadership on SAP BPC and EPM Implementations

The Cloud – Big Bucks, No Whammies

Posted by Mike Smayrabunya on Thu, Feb 12, 2015 @ 13:02 PM

In the early to mid 1980s there was a popular TV game show that had a catch phrase, “Big bucks, no whammies!”…meaning contestants would risk their earnings to date for a chance to earn even more returns. Getting a dreaded ‘whammy’ meant you would lose everything you had.

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What's in a Good, Better, BEST Practice?

Posted by David Den Boer on Tue, Feb 03, 2015 @ 12:02 PM

Winston Churchill’s friend once said of him, “Winston is a man of simple tastes, he is always prepared to put up with the best of everything.” The desire for the best is something everyone covets, but this aspiration becomes problematic when “best” cannot readily be defined. So how would you know if you received the best?

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Which SAP EPM Event is Right for You?

Posted by David Den Boer on Tue, Jan 27, 2015 @ 10:01 AM

I often get asked “which are the ‘good’ events to go to for EPM related content?” Instead of answering in email, or on the phone, I want to make a more thorough response available for posterity.

First, let’s ask: what are attendees’ expectations when going to an event? These fall into two categories, with differing needs. One group is looking to make some sort of purchase decision, evaluating either software solutions or a new service provider. The other group has already made a purchase decision to own the software, and they are looking to update their knowledge of the product roadmap, and hear customer and partner stories about upgrades, process improvements, and other experiences that can benefit them. There are numerous events to choose from, and knowing which events are appropriate for each group is a good way to maximize the return on investment for attendee fee and travel dollars… and more importantly, your time.

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Performance Tuning for SAP BPC 10.0 for NetWeaver

Posted by Vishal Goradia on Wed, Jan 21, 2015 @ 16:01 PM

Performance of a system is crucial to every implementation. System monitoring and administration help towards efficiently running a SAP system. Performing some proactive monitoring and configuration can help in avoiding SAP system issues. Let’s talk about a few approaches to troubleshoot performance issues while working on SAP BPC 10.0 for NetWeaver system.

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Introduction to SAP HANA

Posted by Darko Kavazovic on Tue, Jan 13, 2015 @ 09:01 AM

As an IT professional, I was very interested in HANA when the product first came out to the market two plus years ago.  Initially getting started on HAHA involved buying all physical hardware, which put smaller companies on the sidelines due to high start-up cost.  Over time, HANA has truly transformed by getting more and more features added with the new service packs.  It was not just the features, but also the support expansion that enables you to run HANA on the various vendor’s hardware and the ability to run it on virtualized hardware such as VMWare and AWS (Amazon Web Service).  The best part from an IT perspective, is that while it used to take weeks or even months to setup HANA, now you can be up and running in matter of hours if you utilize providers such as AWS. 

I have worked with HANA on physical, virtualized, and cloud platforms, and they all offer a wide range of performance and memory levels.  HANA can currently be installed as standalone or scale-out (aka multi-server configuration).  When it comes to HANA memory size capacity, you can scale up to 6TB of the memory for a single system, and the scale-out cluster can have up to 112TB+.  When it comes to cloud offerings, they are not currently available with such a large memory capacity, but their offerings change for the better all the time.  In my opinion, the fastest way to test HANA in your own environment would be to utilize virtualized hardware that most organizations already have in place.  I know that some shops are mostly Microsoft, and since HANA runs on Linux they are hesitant about having to support a different operating system; but, to put this in perspective, more than 70% of all websites in the world run on some Unix operating system, and that is due to their flexibility and high reliability.  Having to support multiple operating systems is inevitable.  HANA was initially only offered on SUSE aka SLES (SUSE Linux Enterprise Server), and due to demand it is now also offered on Red Hat Linux.  In my opinion, unlike Windows, Linux requires a lot less maintenance. 

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Success Stories, Guest Speakers, and BPC Tricks: EPM Leadership Summit Agenda Announced!

Posted by Staci Matt on Tue, Jan 06, 2015 @ 09:01 AM

Column5 is no stranger to providing the best EPM resources.  From our renowned EPM Academy, to our previous Leadership Summits, we have always prided ourselves on providing the most specialized, up-to-date, and helpful training opportunities.  Taking this philosophy further led to the development of our EPM Education Series, including the much anticipated return of our EPM Leadership Summit!

With the EPM Leadership Summit rapidly approaching, Column5 is happy to present its full agenda (see press release)!  From February 24-27, our experts, your peers, and SAP speakers will be providing the best EPM learning opportunities.

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Ready for the Year-End Close? Conduct the Orchestra and Make Beautiful Music

Posted by David Jones on Tue, Dec 23, 2014 @ 09:12 AM

Christmas is almost here and some of you have no doubt already started your Q4/year-end close processes. The question for today’s blog is, are you really ready for your year end? For many, the close process is still tough and painful, while others ease through the year end with a well-rehearsed, automated, finely tuned and well-managed process. That’s pretty clear from our Close Cycle Rankings Research for 2014, where the fastest of the 500 largest companies in the world to report global consolidated results managed to consolidate, close and report in just 12 elapsed days after the year end, while the slowest took an astonishing 120 elapsed days.

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Make Your EPM Project Successful By Investing in the Change!

Posted by Connie Folk on Tue, Dec 16, 2014 @ 09:12 AM

The nature of projects and project management is change.  Often times, the change brought about by commissioning a project is overlooked, as the focus is placed on the technology.  Just as frequently, the need to assess and address the people-side of the project is initiated separately and often too late in the project lifecycle.  Most projects are managed using a methodology based on the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK), which focuses on management of scope change and the potential impact to budget, timeline, or resource allocation. However, PMBOK does not address the human aspects delivered through the project, or how to successfully identify, plan for, and mitigate resistance to the change. 

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What is YOUR BPC Upgrade Strategy?

Posted by Adam Schulang on Tue, Dec 09, 2014 @ 12:12 PM

“What is your BPC upgrade strategy?” or “what is the best plan to migrate BPC?” are the most common questions I am asked by clients looking to upgrade to the latest version of SAP BPC.  Even though clients' landscapes come in all shapes and sizes, the overall strategy for a BPC upgrade is not very different from one client to the next.  

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Get the Most Out of Your BPC Training with Column5’s EPM Academy

Posted by Adam Hess on Tue, Dec 02, 2014 @ 13:12 PM

As the world’s leading-edge consulting firm, Column5 Consulting is helping our customers leverage SAP’s Enterprise Performance Management (EPM) suite, including SAP Business Planning and Consolidation (BPC), through cutting edge and world-class training with Column5’s EPM Academy

With any size implementation of BPC, having relevant and engaging training ensures that you get the most out of your staff and technology.  Here at Column5’s EPM Academy, our goal is to guarantee that all users – no matter their role – are confident and comfortable with their knowledge and skills with BPC.

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