Fine if you are already in the SAP ecosystem, otherwise steer clear
Rebecca T Barber, MBA, PHD profile photo
January 18, 2018

Fine if you are already in the SAP ecosystem, otherwise steer clear

Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Software Version

Microsoft Edition

Overall Satisfaction with SAP BPC (Business Planning and Consolidation)

On the Microsoft platform without Business Warehouse, this is basically a straight ETL process that you need to write. We use queries on our source system to move flat files over that are loaded using SSIS. It works, and as with all older tool sets it is actually fairly solid, but it isn't automated on the SAP side. We had to write all the scripts.
BPC is being used as the system in which we develop our yearly budgets, collect quarterly forecast, and do an analysis of the spending and revenues throughout the organization. The FP&A organization is the heaviest user, with extensive reporting and analysis being done on a daily basis. Over 300 users across campus access it during budget season in order to enter their budgets and half that many enter it quarterly to update forecasts.
  • Dimensional model allows for slicing and dicing of the data in a variety of ways
  • This is a custom tool - it provides an environment but you define what the structures look like, which offers flexibility
  • Updates are not backward compatible - on the server side they require complete reinstalls.
  • While they suggest the tool is unlimited, in practice, there are substantial performance limitations on the Microsoft Platform if you let the cube get too large
  • The Microsoft platform is legacy from the original tool (Outlooksoft) that SAP purchased. The result is that it gets the least effort in development
  • If you aren't using SAP Business Warehouse, the load process is considerably more complex than it otherwise might be.
  • When originally implemented (as the predecessor product Outlooksoft) BPC took ASU from trying to budget and forecast for a 2B enterprise out of spreadsheets and into a far more consolidated tool. It has saved us considerable time over the years and paid for itself several times over.
  • BPC also allows us to present our budget in multiple different views to support management, board and departmental reporting.
Column 5 - They have been very helpful in both implementing and advising us as we have moved through version updates.
Freudenberg IT is our hosting provider and they have been less helpful - if it isn't running on NetWeaver/HANA, they seem confused by the architecture. We've struggled to get things working correctly in that environment and try hard not to make changes that might disrupt a currently working system.
We plan to move to a web-based tool within the next two years. Workday is building a planning model within their finance tool, which we are evaluating, and we are looking at other tools such as Adaptive and Tidemark as alternative platforms. We expect to need some replacement, but we want to get off this product before SAP dumps the Microsoft version.
I would recommend this tool to an SAP shop running SAPs other applications, including Business Warehouse, and only on Netweaver and/or HANA - I would advise AGAINST this product for new customers planning to run on the Microsoft platform. I expect that the Microsoft platform will be discontinued in the future.

SAP BPC (Business Planning and Consolidation) Feature Ratings

Long-term financial planning
8
Financial budgeting
10
Forecasting
9
Scenario modeling
8
Management reporting
9
Financial data consolidation
Not Rated
Journal entries and reports
Not Rated
Multi-currency management
Not Rated
Intercompany Eliminations
Not Rated
Minority Ownership
Not Rated
Local and consolidated reporting
Not Rated
Detailed Audit Trails
Not Rated
Financial Statement Reporting
Not Rated
Management Reporting
8
Excel-based Reporting
9
Automated board and financial reporting
Not Rated
Personalized dashboards
Not Rated
Color-coded scorecards
Not Rated
KPIs
Not Rated
Cost and profitability analysis
Not Rated
Key Performance Indicator setting
Not Rated
Benchmarking with external data
Not Rated
Flat file integration
7
Excel data integration
8
Direct links to 3rd-party data sources
Not Rated