FCCS is one of those cloud products that many of us have been waiting and watching for. Built upon a completely different architecture, Planning & Budgeting Cloud Service (PBCS), this product offers an alternative option for consolidation. (This means that our beloved Essbase tool is powering FCCS!) Priced at $250/named user/month (before discounts) with a minimum of 10 users, this cloud offering promises an end-to-end best practice consolidation solution. FCCS will provide value with heavy “out of the box” offerings with limited need for customization. It comes with pre-built cash flow, balance sheet, and income statement reports, along with native dashboards and Microsoft Office integration.
Rich Wilke, a Sr. Director of Product Management and one of the go-to Oracle folks on FCCS does a nice summary of what to expect here. He describes the product like this: “FCCS is a best practices based solution designed to get customers up and running quickly, with limited customization and a strong emphasis on reporting and analytics. Unlike HFM where the rules file allows massive degrees of customization FCCS is designed to allow customers to implement best practices with limited changes on things like consolidations rules, custom intercompany eliminations, etc. The software supports all the standard requirements – consolidations, currency, intercompany, journals, process management, etc. but for the most part this functionality is out of the box and not custom developed.”
In addition, we’ve been told some of the following technical details about what to expect (#SafeHarbor, #SafeHarbor, #SafeHarbor – I’ll continue to update the list below as I receive more & better information):
- Completely cloud based
- Out of the box calculations, hierarchies, and lights out processing
- Traditional rules scripting used in products like Hyperion Financial Management (HFM) will not be possible. However, business rules are already built in and these will continue to be enhanced with customer needs.
- One of the unique features will be a concept called “social interactions” – interaction activities related to the general close and consolidation business process
- EPM Automate will be the tool of choice for automation
- FCCS will support a maximum of 13 dimensions, 11 of which will be pre-configured
- More robust FDMEE support is coming – FDMEE will include pre-mapped data in the initial release
- Global reporting requirements like IFRS, GAAP, and multi-GAAP will be supported
- Auditing capabilities
- Balance sheet movement transactions with foreign currency and CTA calcs
- You can think of it as HFM “lite”
Those enjoying the benefits of HFM today should not worry. From my understanding, HFM is here to stay. They are still building new features and functionality in HFM and will continue to do so.
With this new cloud offerings comes a lot of questions, though. What types of skill sets are required to implement this product – is an Essbase/Planning person better suited for the technical aspects? Regardless, the need for a strong accounting background and experience with close cycles will not change. Time will tell…and in the meantime all of us EPM Cloud nerds will continue to salivate and wait.