The Return is in the Details
May 13, 2015

The Return is in the Details

Michael Krolick | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Modules Used

  • Planning, Reporting

Overall Satisfaction with Planful (formerly Host Analytics)

We use Host Analytics for all of our budgeting and forecasting needs and also all of our financial reporting. It is mainly used by Finance but we are looking to expand this in the future. We hope to integrate data from Salesforce into Host in order to better forecast our business pipeline revenue. Our revenue projections can become somewhat complex. Host Analytics is able to provide the detail and calculations that we need to accurately forecast our revenue. It has also become our one version of the truth and has eliminated a lot of adhoc spreadsheets in many different places.
  • Host Analytics integrates well with our general ledger and accounting system through a Boomi connection. This gives us up-to-date information during the monthly close process and enables our company to make decisions easily.
  • It provides pretty robust reporting capabilities even though the reporting modules take quite a bit of programming. I don't find it very user friendly and it takes quite a while to learn how to design and write reports. We have hired a consultant to do most of this work for us.
  • Host Analytics also provides great resources to it's customers along with great customer service and help desk support.
  • As previously mentioned, I believe their reporting modules are not very user friendly. It takes a lot of time and effort to learn how to program and write reports. I find this frustrating compared to other report writing programs that I've used in the past.
  • For our organization, Host has provided a very cost effective and detailed planning tool. It is very important for our revenue projections to be accurate and Host has provided us with the tool to do this.
Host was able to provide everything that we were looking for in a cloud solution which is very important to our organization. We were not able to support an on-premise tool.
I would recommend that any new prospective client would perform a detailed analysis of what Host Analytics can do for your company. Host is very good at looking at your business and coming up with templates and scenarios of how Host can work for your organization. Ask specific questions and propose specific scenarios that will illustrate what Host can do for your organization.

Planful Features and Attributes

We rarely have support issues but when we do, the support team at Host Analytics responds in a very timely manner. I've never felt out of the loop and have never had any issue with getting a problem resolved. Information is continually given as to the status of a case and what is being accomplished. Their customer support is very impressive.
It works for us!!
There was a point where we were having some difficulty with our Boomi connector to our general ledger. The Host staff was always available to work on the issue even giving support after hours when we had a need. This was very impressive to our organization and gave us the comfort that our needs were taken seriously.

Using Planful (formerly Host Analytics)

6 - They are all Finance functions.
1 - You need ability to be able to learn a system like Host and feel very comfortable to be able to pick it up on your own. There really isn't any kind of training that is worth while. During implementation it is really train the trainer and then you're on your own. Rather than hire a full time employee we have a service contract with a partner that provides excellent support for us.
  • Annual Budget
  • Quarterly Forecasts
  • Financial Reporting and Dashboards
  • We desire to expand the types of data that we import into Host from our other systems. This will greatly enhance the analytic capability of Host.
  • We would also like to integrate possibly with Salesforce to help with the front end analysis of our business.
We just renewd for another 3 years. It works for us and we look forward to using it even more in the future.

Evaluating Planful (formerly Host Analytics) and Competitors

  • Price
  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
  • Positive Sales Experience with the Vendor
One of the main factors for our organization was that it provided a robust solution in the cloud. Our organization could not support an on-premise solution and Host Analytics as able to provide the solution for us.
We may have looked at several other cloud solutions. Of course there are many more out there now to choose from which were not available to us then.

Planful (formerly Host Analytics) Implementation

We now use a partner for any needs we have with Host Analytics. I would recommend using a partner as they are able to provide a wider area of expertise accross multiple platforms and solutions.
Yes - We initally used Host Analytics as a repository for historical financial data imported from our previous general ledger system. We did not bring historical financial data into our new general ledger. We then implemented the first budgeting process in two pieces - expenses and revenue. The implementation process took approximately 3-4 months but went off without any reall issues. We were very pleased with the implementation staff that Host Analytics provided to us.
Change management was minimal
  • One challenge was getting the implementation consultant to see our view of our revenue planning. Once this was accomplished, the implementation went very smoothly.
  • Timing and review had some issues but were quickly worked out.

Planful (formerly Host Analytics) Support

Quick Resolution
Good followup
Knowledgeable team
Problems get solved
Kept well informed
No escalation required
Support cares about my success
Quick Initial Response
Yes - We feel this is valuable and we negotiated it into our contract.
Yes - Yes, as previously stated all issues with Host Analytics are handled in a timely manner.

Using Planful (formerly Host Analytics)

Like to use
Relatively simple
Easy to use
Well integrated
Quick to learn
Feel confident using
  • Expense budgeting by department is very straight forward and easy to use.
  • Once our revenue templates were built, revenue forecasting is very easy as well. Our templates take a little bit to keep up but generally pretty easy.
  • I still feel that reporting is pretty cumbersome. I was previously used to a product that was much more flexible. Host reporting takes some programming knowledge and expertise. We employ a consultant to provide more intricate reporting needs.