OneStream, the Only Unified CPM Platform!

OneStream The Only Unified Platform


Are you in the process of choosing a Corporate Performance Management (CPM) platform? As you look at various options in the market, you need to first determine if a unified solution or best of breed approach is right  for your organization. While you might be tempted to consider stand alone solutions for each component of CPM, in the end you will save time, money and angst with a unified platform approach to CPM. Keep reading to find out how OneStream Software can satisfy your organization's entire CPM requirements in a single unified platform. 

Worlds Colliding (But Not Really) - Unifying Your Financial Process 

George Costanza from the sitcom Seinfeld had a great quote. “If ‘Relationship George’ walks through this door, he will kill independent George! A George, divided against itself, cannot stand!” Many in the CPM world feel that bringing together the accounting functions (Close & Consolidations) into the same world as Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A), is just too much to handle in a single offering. Over the past decade, OneStream has proven this myth wrong as over 1,200 customers have moved from legacy CPM systems to a unified platform. More importantly, over 80% of OneStream customers use the platform for more than one CPM solution, clearly dispelling the notion that you have to have multiple products.


So why is there even a debate? Well, let's take a deeper look and learn more.

The  financial consolidation and close process requires control and accuracy, while planning, budgeting and forecasting requires the flexibility to budget, plan and forecast at different levels of detail than the actual financial results. And furthermore, this level of detail can vary based on the planning process (strategic vs. financial vs. operational) and line of business. Those who favor the best of breed approach believe that the control required to deliver fast and accurate consolidated financial results hinders the planning and forecasting process, and vice versa. But is this really true? The answer is that it depends on the architecture of the software.



Best of Breed Applications and Fragmentation

Several CPM vendors have chosen to deliver a fragmented set of best of breed applications to support processes such as financial close and consolidation, reporting and various types of planning. These vendors claim that each of these processes requires a dedicated application that’s optimized to provide either the control or flexibility required by the application. The problem with this approach is that every organization has the need to compare their actual, book of record financial or operating results against their budgets or forecasts in order to identify and analyze variances. 


With a fragmented suite of applications, this requires users to move data from the financial consolidation application to the planning application, or vice versa, or to yet another application where the data can be aligned for reporting and analysis. And in addition to spending a lot of time moving data around, the users must maintain and update metadata in multiple applications as new accounts, departments, locations, or products are added to the business. 


For example, what happens when your business changes via re-orgs, acquisitions, or divestures? The answer is you need an army of consultants or admins to realign systems, metadata, data and reports to ensure all users are seeing the same definition of net income for example. Having multiple systems means that there is a data reconciliation effort just to try to ensure common definitions. This tax on your systems and resources means they can’t attack other business problems.


Some of the cloud-based vendors in the market offer point solutions that support only specific CPM processes, such as enterprise planning or account reconciliations. The cloud-based planning software vendors claim their software is optimized for this process and that consolidation and reporting should be handled in a separate application. Again, the problem here is that customers need to be able to compare actual financial and operational results, against the budgets or forecasts to identify and analyze variances. So the users end up having to extract the actuals, budgets and forecasts out of their respective applications and into Excel spreadsheets or some other system for comparative reporting. 


Another problem is that some cloud-based planning software vendors provide planning platforms that include no pre-built financial intelligence – it must all be built from scratch. While this approach might work for supporting only operational planning processes, it doesn’t work for linking operational plans to financial plans and forecasts. This linkage of financial and operational plans is a key market requirement and the essence of what’s now being referred to as eXtended Planning & Analysis (XP&A).


OneStream Provides Control and Flexibility in a Single Application

Now that we have identified the complexities that are created for users by fragmented CPM suites or best of breed planning solutions the question is – can a single unified CPM application provide both control and flexibility? Is it possible to have a single application that provides the control and accuracy needed to support the complex financial consolidation needs of global enterprises, as well as the flexibility to support financial and operational planning, budgeting and forecasting. The answer is yes – and that’s the essence of OneStream. 


OneStream provides a unified, Intelligent Finance Platform with a modern architecture designed to provide accuracy and control as well as flexibility in a single application. One of the secret sauces behind this is something called Extensible Dimensionality®. This is essentially the ability of the system to support corporate standards, such as the corporate chart of accounts (COA), while providing relevance for operating units. This means the corporate COA can be extended to support the more detailed reporting and planning requirements of various business units without impacting the corporate standard.


The other secret sauce is the multiple calculation engines within OneStream’s Intelligent Finance platform. This includes a world-class financial consolidation engine, as well as an aggregation engine designed to rapidly roll up budgets, plans and forecasts that don’t require the same precision and audit trails as book of record financial results.  The beauty of this approach is that the data for all these processes resides in a single data store, providing a single version of the truth for actuals, plans, forecasts and other corporate data.


In addition, a unified application means all processes are aligned with a single point of change, so solutions are always in alignment without manual reconciliation efforts. This single point of changes gives OneStream customers the agility needed to conquer the complexity of business changes. This unique capability is what allows OneStream to replace multiple legacy applications with a single, unified platform. That platform provides the control to support fast and accurate financial close, consolidation and reporting – while also providing the flexibility to support agile budgeting, planning and forecasting across the enterprise. And this unified approach makes it very easy for users to compare actual financial and operating results with budgets and forecasts – at whatever level of detail is required, without moving data between applications. It provides a single version of the truth for actuals as well as strategic, financial and operational plans, budgets and forecasts.


Proof is in the Pudding

Does this approach really work? You bet it does. How do we know that? Because over 80% of OneStream customers use the platform to support their financial consolidation, reporting and planning processes, as well as other tasks such as account reconciliations, transaction matching, tax provisioning, profitability analysis and ESG reporting.


Learn more with CompIntelligence

CompIntelligence has been a OneStream partner since the start and have strategized with our clients on how to move from legacy best of breed solutions to the OneStream unified platform. Over the last decade we have worked with 70 clients and successfully delivered over 270 projects. Our clients have leveraged all aspects of the OneStream unified platform. In order to increase use adoption and success, CompIntelligence has trained 1,000’s of users and continues to work with clients with our managed services offerings.


Contact us today to speak with a team member to learn more.