Is there an EPM Summit this year? What is this Network?!
If you’ve ever been to the legendary Column5 EPM Summit event, I know what you’re probably thinking. ‘The event was so awesome, I networked with great people, took in great content, engaged in deep discussions, found solutions to our problems, learned so much with hands on practice…it was even fun.
Why would you ever change the EPM Summit Leadership Event to the EPM Summit Network? As the kids would text: IKR? (If you’re like me and recently find yourself in the 50+ demographic, that means: ‘I know, right?’)
We all played the old game “rock, paper, scissors” (aka Rochambeau) to settle a dispute or just for fun. Everyone knows the simple hierarchy that forms a path to victory - rocks crush scissors, paper covers a rock, but scissors cut paper. This is a lesson we learn as children, but such simple hierarchies of superiority can govern outcomes in professional life too.
Knowledge is power - but where you acquire that powerful knowledge can make all the difference! When looking for an industry conference, innumerable options make the process quickly overwhelming.
Most conference attendees are looking for three things:
- Valuable content in an environment conducive for learning
- Access to knowledgeable experts
- The opportunity to connect with peers faced with similar tasks and challenges
Two things are certain in life: death and taxes. An EPM user might add “struggling with EPM software” to the list of unavoidable challenges. In the case of taxes, one could (and absolutely should) hire an experienced tax services provider to craft a tax minimizing strategy. You will still pay taxes, but the difference between paying a lot, or a little, lies in the expertise of who you hire.
In June, Column5 Consulting and our EPM International partners hosted the EMEA EPM Leadership Summit at the Royal Overseas League in London.
This key event in our calendar brought together SAP EPM users from across the region to think, participate and network on all topics relating to EPM.
Among the many discussions and sessions that covered the entire SAP EPM portfolio were some specifically on the topic of SAP Financial Consolidation (SAP FC previously named SAP BFC). SAP FC (formerly Cartesis) is a well proven standalone consolidation solution, designed for large and complex corporates where control and auditability are essential. FC is especially relevant across UK and Europe, where IFRS and statutory reporting are key requirements.
One of the key features for the SAP BPC EPM Add-in for Excel has been the ability to write VBA to extend and customize the capabilities of the Add-in. The new EPM Plug-in for Analysis for Office (AO), which replaces the EPM Add-in, offers similar and in most cases compatible VBA support as the original EPM Add-in. However, there are some important distinctions between the two which this article covers.
The new EPM Plug-in for Analysis for Office (AO) requires a different method of declaring the specific API class used to access the library of VBA methods that SAP BPC supports. The latest version as of this writing, AO 2.4 SP1, made some but not all the old FPMXL Client methods compatible with the EPM Plug-in. To be safe, it’s recommended to start coding using the new standards for AO, as there’s no clear indication of whether all methods will be made compatible using the old object declaration standards.
To illustrate, here is a direct comparison of the differences between the two declaration methods.
Google “EPM Performance or Memory issues” and you will receive millions of hits from your search results. When it comes to performance and especially memory consumption, not only is the “magic bullet” fix rare but the resolution is potentially complex and multifaceted in nature. On a recent project, we started to see symptoms that became issues including long refresh times. For one user, we saw an Input Schedule consume so much memory it resulted in the “White Screen of Death (WSoD) and Excel crashing. In this article, I wanted to look at the challenges we faced and strategies employed to resolve the issues.
SO - Functional Track
Our Technical Services team has received an influx of service tickets regarding issues with the recently released SAP BPC EPM Add-in Service Pack 29.
With EPM Add-in SP29 installed, we noticed that none of the built-in reports or report templates are working when trying to refresh with BPC 10.1 Microsoft (MS). When attempting to refresh, it keeps prompting to login to SAP NetWeaver (NW) system, instead of BPC 10.1 Microsoft. Please see example below:
ldcie3f.wdf.sap.corp EPMAddin_ODBOSP3 Consolidation
We are connected to the Planning model for BPC MS but it is trying to login to BPC NW Consolidation.
BPC (Business Planning & Consolidation),
During November and December, Column5, in conjunction with our client DNB, three interesting and informative webcasts ran on the exciting and rewarding journey taken by DNB ASA, Norway’s largest financial services group.
This series of webcasts focused on the following specific and important elements of Enterprise Performance Management:
- Financial Consolidation for Statutory and Regulatory Reporting
- Intercompany Reconciliation
- The Last Mile of Financial Reporting
Each topic was underpinned by informing the attendees how SAP EPM solutions help companies achieve excellence and efficiency based on this real life DNB example.
Successful projects, delivering real results, are a must in today’s competitive environment. Setting projects up for success can occur by following a proven methodology. Optimally, organizational processes, behaviors, and results are directly correlated to, and as a result of, the creation and cascade of an overall organizational vision. From the vision, a strategy is born. However, your strategy may never become a star if it remains relative obscure to the larger organization. One of the key challenges many companies face is operationalizing, or making the strategy a reality. Projects are the vehicle to move strategy from the boardroom to the back offices and ultimately a core plank in delivering your overall strategy.
Enterprise Performance Management (EPM),