New Cloud Solution for Finance

February 6, 2013 by Shandy Lo

Foto: iStockphoto

Foto: iStockphoto

1.       Why this new financials solution?

2.       Who is the target group?

3.       What can the new solution do?

4.       What are the benefits?

Next page: Why this new financial solution?

1. Why this new financials solution?

The SAP Financials OnDemand financial management solution is part of SAP’s Cloud strategy. “We’re currently generating one billion euros in revenue from our cloud business. This product is a new financials solution for large customers,” says Tobias Dosch. The SVP of product management for SAP Cloud is convinced that the next wave of cloud adoption in finance is approaching. Currently , SAP is focusing on cloud solutions for four lines of businessto help companies manage “people”, “money”, “customers”, and “suppliers”. A cloud-based offering for payroll software, for example, helps companies manage their “people” more effectively, while cloud-based invoice management and information exchange help businesses better connect with “suppliers”.

SAP Financials OnDemand is the second product to be delivered in the “money” category, after SAP Travel OnDemand.

Next page: Who is the target group?

2. Who is the target group?

The software, developed with the concept of “finance for everyone” in mind, is designed chiefly for corporations and larger midsize enterprises. The target group, says Dosch, is the entire workforce. “It’s all about interpreting data in such a way that it is relevant for a broad spectrum of employees in the decision-making process,” he explains.

Making the “language of finance” accessible to all

“SAP Financials OnDemand is not just for finance professionals; it is designed with non-finance managers in mind too,” explains Bertram Wiest, VP of product management for SAP Financials OnDemand. “The aim is to help every department speak the same financial language so that a CIO, CMO, and other non-finance managers understand the processes involved, bridging the gap between the finance department and the business.”

Most of the resources in finance departments are currently channeled into transactional and compliance tasks. But CFOs are keen to move toward delivering business insights and decision-making support and to providing greater strategic input. “To do so, they have to understand what planning hypotheses individual areas can work effectively on,” Wiest says.

Next page: What can the new solution do?

3. What can the new solution do?

SAP Financials OnDemand can also be deployed in tandem with vendors’ products. The software has interfaces to both SAP Business Suite and non-SAP solutions.

Real-time information simplifies analysis

Powered by SAP HANA, the new on-demand financials solution features an intuitive, personalized user interface that allows dynamic analyses based on real-time information from end-to-end financial processes. Employees can trawl huge data volumes to make informed decisions fast – even when they’re on the move. With this level of mobility and constant availability – and the advent of digital magazines for the iPad – Dosch predicts that the design of financial presentations will change dramatically.

The new software:

– helps companies centralize management of financial, order processing, and payment transactions.

– offers two usage levels. The first is for financial professionals who want to conduct collaborative financial analyses online and on the move. The second is for less experienced users who are looking to use an easy- to-operate financial management solution in a collaborative and social environment.

Next page: What are the benefits?

4. What are the benefits?

–          Customers have access to financial results from any location

–          Non-finance people – from knowledge workers to marketing managers – understand reporting

–          The software is simple to implement

–          A high level of automation reduces manual work

–          A single data store allows multi-dimensional reporting (such as countries, customers, products)

“Ultimately, our objective is to provide a cloud offering for all areas of finance: planning, consolidation, cash management – in short, everything that a CFO needs,” concludes Dosch.

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