I continue to be surprised by the number of people who still knock at our virtual door each week,
asking for a demo of Hyperion for either financial consolidation or planning.
Whilst the Hyperion suite of products is often tagged as a legacy solution, particularly when compared to some of the more modern cloud-based alternatives, it’s by no means dead and buried.
If you have been working in the Office of Finance during the past 20+ years, then it’s likely that you will have had interaction with Hyperion and gained insights using its reporting tools.
In fact, it’s often the start of an interesting conversation for us at Concentric because we continue to support a large client base who have no immediate plans to jump ship to the latest platform or cloud solution.
Why is this the case?
Well, there are quite a few reasons for this, for example: If it isn’t broken, then why fix it?
If you were talking to a cloud vendor right now, they would likely pitch the benefits of aligning your business with a cloud strategy and probably suggest moving away from Hyperion, simply because it’s a collection of point solutions which need to be maintained and managed individually.
You would also hear of the many benefits of using cloud-based Corporate Performance Management “CPM” or Enterprise Performance Management “EPM” solutions to deliver all your performance reporting needs under a SaaS model - and often with one single architecture and data model.
This sounds great, right? But … it really depends on your circumstances.
Company A is growing fast - both organically and by acquisition - and is currently using excel spreadsheets for financial consolidation and planning. They have rapidly increased audit and financial reporting requirements which need to be revisited weekly, monthly, quarterly, half yearly and annually.
Recommendation: In this case, looking at a modern, cloud-based CPM platform is the right way to go because it will provide you with the ability to deploy a road map of functionality that can support the entire Office of Finance… and beyond.
How you go about selecting the right cloud CPM solution is a conversation worth having another day… our experienced advisory team can help you navigate a path to your best-fit solution.
Company B has been using Hyperion Financial Management “HFM” for group consolidation for the last 10 years, and prior to that they upgraded from Hyperion Enterprise to HFM.
Their business is looking at a project to modernise the finance function, but its immediate challenge is focused on getting all its operating entities onto one single finance ledger system.
There are no burning reasons to change the way group consolidation is completed at this time.
Recommendation: In this case we would recommend sticking with Hyperion for the foreseeable future. Oracle has extended its support for Hyperion through its application unlimited
programme which provides product patches until at least 2032.
Some considerations before you move ahead:
- Oracle Premier support is only available to customers who have upgraded to version 11.2.1 or higher. If you are on an older version of Hyperion, then you will need to look at a project to update your application estate to the latest version of 11.2.x. If your version of Hyperion is older than 184.108.40.206 (the release before 11.2.x) then the upgrade path is more involved and is likely to have more impact on your existing business processes and workflows.
- The Oracle Hyperion roadmap at this time is focused on keeping pace with 3rd party technologies that underpin and interface with the Hyperion application e.g. SQL server, web servers, browsers and Microsoft Office 365.
- 2.x is the last planned major release of Hyperion. Oracle is currently releasing quarterly technical patch updates as in-version releases e.g., 11.2.9 being the latest release at the time of writing this blog.
- There are no confirmed plans by Oracle to build new user functionality into the Hyperion suite of products. If you require new features, then Oracle will advocate use of their EPM cloud offering which is a new generation SaaS-based product built on a different architecture, requiring a full lifecycle implementation project (it should be planned as a project rather than an upgrade).
In summary, Hyperion is not disappearing any time soon. But how long organisations continue to depend on it will vary by use case and circumstances. Remember, you don’t always need a sledgehammer to crack a nut.
If Hyperion continues to service your business needs adequately, but you have not kept pace with newer version releases, then get in touch with us for a further discussion on how we can assist.
If you are uncertain of how to weigh the impact of moving to the latest version of Hyperion against IT compliance, audit or broader finance improvement initiatives…. come and talk to us if you need input on your choices, your decision -making process or if you just want our viewpoint on industry solutions.
At Concentric, we are an independent consulting firm - advising organisations and helping them to select, implement, integrate and maintain CPM solutions for financial management and operational analytics.
Whilst our heritage and business growth started with Oracle Hyperion, we have evolved as experts in cloud solution integration and partner with multiple vendors in the CPM space.
As trusted partners in Finance Transformation, we help our clients understand best- practice operating models and facilitate practical interventions that enable their journey from legacy processes and technologies, to a better world of cloud-enabled financial intelligence.