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Oracle Essbase in the Cloud A Mercer Advisors Success Story

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Mercer Advisors, a privately held wealth management firm with approximately $11 billion in assets under management, needed a more robust financial reporting solution. Its legacy solution relied on an Excel-based framework with multiple General Ledger systems providing current and historical data.

Mercer Advisors decided to implement Essbase Cloud, part of the Oracle Analytics Cloud (OAC) platform to provide a modern platform for financial reporting. Mercer Advisors partnered with Perficient to execute on its vision to reap the benefits of this solution.

Mercer Advisors chief financial officer, Douglas Maxwell, discussed the OAC implementation including lessons learned and how OAC can benefit organizations like yours.

Discussion included:

-Challenges with the legacy environment
-Excel to cloud migration approach
-Benefits realized

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Oracle Essbase in the Cloud A Mercer Advisors Success Story

  1. 1. Oracle Essbase in the Cloud: A Mercer Advisors Success Story
  2. 2. J. Douglas Maxwell Chief Financial Officer Mercer Advisors Santhosh Nair GM, Enterprise Performance Management santhosh.nair@perficient.com
  3. 3. 3 Agenda • Introductions • About Perficient • Oracle Essbase on the Cloud Overview • Mercer Advisors Success Story – Current State / On-premises Challenges – Project Scope and Timeline – Outcomes / Success Metrics • Q&A
  4. 4. 4 About Perficient Perficient is the leading digital transformation consulting firm serving Global 2000 and enterprise customers throughout North America. With unparalleled information technology, management consulting, and creative capabilities, Perficient and its Perficient Digital agency deliver vision, execution, and value with outstanding digital experience, business optimization, and industry solutions.
  5. 5. 5 Perficient Profile Founded in 1997 Public, NASDAQ: PRFT 2016 revenue $487 million Major market locations: Allentown, Atlanta, Ann Arbor, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Cincinnati, Columbus, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Fairfax, Houston, Indianapolis, Lafayette, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, New York City, Northern California, Oxford (UK), Southern California, St. Louis, Toronto Global delivery centers in China and India 3,000+ colleagues Dedicated solution practices ~95% repeat business rate Alliance partnerships with major technology vendors Multiple vendor/industry technology and growth awards
  6. 6. 6 Oracle Practice Overview 3000+Deployments Industry Expertise Multi-Solution Expertise EPM | ERP | BI | CX Platinum 200+Oracle Experts Partner Cloud Select Healthcare | Supply Chain/Mfg. | Energy/Oil & Gas Financial Services | Consumer Markets 15 Specializations
  7. 7. 7 Perficient’s EPM Practice Fast Facts • Practice Started: 2002 • Projects Completed: 1000+ • Management Team: 14+ years • Oracle Authorized Education Center • Hyperion Education • SupportNet Managed Services • Support Services Solutions Expertise • Cloud readiness assessments • EPM strategy and health check • Financial close & consolidations • Cloud & on-premises solutions • Reporting & analytics • Data relationship management • Account reconciliations • Profitability & cost management • Infrastructure & high availability Oracle Specializations
  8. 8. 8 Oracle Training and Education Live Virtual Class Training on DemandClassroom Training Learning Streams Self-study Courses Train in person at an Oracle or Perficient facility. These include in-class demonstrations and hands-on labs. Keep learning beyond the classroom with the latest and continuously updated video training though subscriptions. OU and Perficient instructors teach students in a "virtual" classroom. Attend these courses online, in real-time. Train when and where you want, at your own pace. Download the courses online and take them from your computer. Train online via an internet connection. Access streaming lectures, white boarding, and lab activities 24/7. Train in person at an Oracle or Perficient facility or your office with content tailored to your specific needs. Private Events
  9. 9. 9 Survey 1: Which of the following Oracle cloud offerings is your organization currently considering (choose all that apply) A: Oracle Analytics Cloud (Essbase & Business Intelligence) B: Oracle EPM for Financial Close (Close & Consolidations, Account Reconciliations) C: Oracle EPM Planning & Budgeting D: Not Considering Oracle Cloud E: No Cloud Strategy at this time POLL QUESTION 1
  10. 10. Oracle Analytics Cloud Overview
  11. 11. 1111 Infrastructure-as-a-Service Platform-as-a-Service Software-as-a-Service Data as a Service Compute, Storage, Networking, Elastic Hadoop, NoSQL, Spark, Kafka, Database Data Management, Data Integration, Identity Management, Business Analytics Sales, Service, Marketing, Human Capital, Recruitment, Finance, ERP, EPM, Supply Chain, Projects. 5 Billion customer profiles, 1500 data providers, 45K dimensions, 40K pre-built audiences 11 Oracle Cloud: From Data to Infrastructure
  12. 12. 12 Integration with Oracle BI Cloud, Data Visualization Cloud • Native integration with Essbase Cloud • Connect to EPM Cloud • Relational sources • Cloud and on-premise connectivity • Prescriptive dashboards for consumers • Self-service analysis for LOB users • Explore, visualize, share insights
  13. 13. 13 Essbase – History of Innovation “Excel on Steroids” • 1st Multidimensional DB • Empower business users • Multi user read/write • 1st to offer an Excel add in to a dimensional data model • 1st to offer drill and pivot capabilities in Excel Enterprise Grade • Shared services • Strong security • ASO engine • Clustering & HA • Smartview In-Memory • Pure in-memory user experience • Adaptive Analytics engine Cloud • Java-based architecture • Excel to Cube in seconds • “Excel on Steroids”
  14. 14. 14 The Cloud Lets You Focus on Your Business Faster Innovation • Faster pace to product innovation • Modern, global platform • Shorter upgrade cycle Lower Cost • Reduced infrastructure cost • Reduced IT maintenance cost • Reduced customization and upgrade cost Faster Deployments • Pre-installed and pre-configured • User experience-focused design • Elastic & expandable Lower Risk • Reduced administrative burden • Guaranteed system availability • Scalable platform for future expansion
  15. 15. 15 • Essbase users looking for a cloud solution – Reduce costs and simplify maintenance – Hybrid Deployments between on-premises applications and cloud cubes – Faster access to latest Essbase innovation • Integration with other cloud services – Essbase as a data source for Analytics Cloud (BICS/DVCS) – Consolidated data from multiple EPM cloud and on- premises instances – Analyze data from other SaaS applications • Analytics platform for every Excel user – Analytics happens everywhere – Most still use Excel, using data downloaded from other applications – Essbase empowers Excel by adding unified analysis model, interactivity and collaboration Who Will Use Essbase Cloud?
  16. 16. 16 The Essbase you know and love! • Access to Essbase capabilities – BSO/ASO/hybrid databases – Flexible dimensionality – Dynamic formulas – Calc scripts – Data uploads • Smartview connectivity • Powerful admin functions Cloud Features and Innovation! • Browser-based UI – Multiple entry points • Cloud-only features – Sandboxing, scenario management – Design-by-example templates – Excel import/export • Integration with Oracle Analytics Essbase Cloud Features
  17. 17. 17 Survey 2: What are your top concerns about moving to Essbase to the Cloud (choose all that apply)? A: Data security B: Performance / scalability C: Lack of parity D: Can’t capitalize SaaS expense E: Time and effort F: Other G: Not applicable POLL QUESTION 2
  18. 18. Mercer Advisors’ Success Story
  19. 19. 19 +30 years Serving HNW investors as a fee-only financial advisor Family Office for Real Families Financial Planning Investment Mgmt. Estate Planning Corporate Trustee Tax Planning & Prep Client Service Units (CSUs), led by advisor with CFP own the delivery of client experience CSUs backed by centralized, expert teams Investment management Estate planning (in-house law firm) Tax practice (in-house CPA firm) +$11B Client Assets ~8,000 Clients 24 Offices +200 Employees 83 CFPs 7 CFAs 10 CPAs 5 JDs 11 MBAs 1 Operating Model Mercer Advisors Overview – Who We Are
  20. 20. 20 • Mercer Advisors acquires Kanlay Trust in March 2016 • Kanaly began using Mercer’s COA in August 2016 • Kanaly transitioned to Mercer’s General Ledger System in May 2017 • Two GL: Mercer Advisors: Great Plains and Kanaly: Solomon • Duplicate reporting out of both systems • Two sets of Financial Statements • Mapping down at Parent Level • Mercer continues to experience rapid growth – both organically and through M&A • 3 acquisitions in 2016 ~$2.2B AUM • 6 acquisitions in 2017 ~$0.9B AUM Compelling Events
  21. 21. 21 Multiple General Ledger Systems • Historical data sits in multiple systems • Source systems need to be mapped to single COA Manual & Duplicate Reporting • Reporting out of multiple systems • Duplicate sets of financial reports Ad-hoc Analysis • No ability to drill into data for further analysis • Additional or detailed data must be pulled from source system Reliance on Microsoft Excel • Reports & Budget were previously in Excel • Prone to errors Need a Scalable Solution • Rapid growth requires a reporting system that could adapt to the growth and changing reporting requirements • Cost center managers need to manage their respective P&Ls Challenges
  22. 22. 22 May 2017 Initial scoping End of June: Proposal presentation August /September: Commenced project with Perficient. Analysis of COAs and design of Dimensions and Integrations. October: Reconciliation of Kanaly and Mercer COAs and mapping of historical data. November : Complete validations, UAT and go live. Essbase Cloud Timeline
  23. 23. 23 Cube Design Reporting Administration • Single COA for both Mercer and Kanaly • Capture Actuals, Budget and Forecast • Data integrations for multiple sources systems • Excel-based reporting using Smart View • VPN connectivity with corporate network • Excel Cube Designer used to create and update • Essbase Command Line Interface to manage processes • Easy migration of objects from dev to prod instance Essbase Scope Areas
  24. 24. 24 Single Source Oracle Analytics Cloud Project Success • Integrated GLs • Single COA • Actuals, Budget and Forecast • Excel based reporting and analysis • Cloud Essbase environment • Excel-based Cube creation via Excel and administration via web • PaaS provides scalability • Self-service reporting and analysis • No hardware or dependence on IT • Ability to quickly deploy application updates through Excel • Client involvement Project Outcomes
  25. 25. Questions Type your question into the chat box
  26. 26. 26 Next up: [Event] Modern Supply Chain Experience January 29-31, 2018 Follow Us Online • Perficient.com/SocialMedia • Facebook.com/Perficient • Twitter.com/PRFT_Oracle • Blogs.perficient.com/Oracle
  27. 27. Thank You