Object-oriented application models
For optimal results, everything a user can configure in the model should translate to an object or attributes of the object. These objects have complex, many-to-many relationships with one another that define how the application will transform the data. For example, a company's model may contain 10 different dimensions, including product, customer, region, and time. As the user changes the configuration of that model — say, by adding a new hierarchy or a new dimension -— the configuration is translated into transformations that will be applied at runtime.
With this approach, a large array of use cases can be quickly configured, tried within various scenarios, and modified as the business changes, all without the normal hand-holding required from IT.
An end-user-focused framework
Today's cloud-based, multitenanted solutions are designed with the user experience top-of-mind. These solutions are accessible on multiple browsers across virtually any device, with the same user experience and complete functionality, regardless of how they're accessed.
Mobile-ready solutions benefit the end-user by allowing bidirectional flows of information from anywhere. They also mean IT doesn't have to identify, implement, or support a mobile solution that ties into enterprise apps; those capabilities are included natively.
Behind the user experience resides a framework that supports the analytic processes required to manage business performance. This framework allows users to configure their own business processes directly by adding new steps, connecting steps, appending approvals, and so on, while tracking the status of processes, generating notifications, and managing the configuration and structure of every instance of every process. Because these actions are designed to be executed at the end-user level, no IT involvement should be required.
A cloud platform offers a great degree of on-demand elasticity both horizontally and vertically. The cloud allows for automated provisioning and deployment in response to changes in usage. Autoscaling ensures customers have consistent, reliable performance — another boon to the IT department in that it virtually eliminates demand spike issues.
An EPM analytics stack that resides on a native cloud platform with enterprise-grade security and availability facilitates quick, easy deployments to any cloud provider with any cloud infrastructure. In a rapidly changing provider market with rapidly declining costs, this means IT departments can swap vendors quickly and easily as prices drop, without impact on workload.
Last, a multitenanted application platform offers a single codebase, ensuring every customer is on the same version. Because the development organization has to focus on only a single release, the innovation cycle is quicker. Product enhancements and new capabilities are more rapidly available with no upgrade burden and no solution maintenance, freeing up IT for more strategic value-adds to the business.
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