Is EPM just one more TLA or can it truely transform corporate performance?

Now that everyone has resource, customer, and supply chain management – all that is left is performance. Do you think sophisticated analytic and reporting tools that integrate nicely across the enterprise and not just vertically within an organization can be a key differentiator against competitors or do you think it provides nice charts but corporations still lack the internal governance to turn this into timely, actionable data?

Kyle Smith

Director of HR at MomentumSI

Enterprise Performance Management, IMHO is hollow without the underlying discipline, process and culture. A lot of companies drop in the tools and expect the discipline and data to magically follow. Instead, people waste inordinate amounts of time and effort learning how to “game the system” to get the results that management expects. A lot of organizations “think” that they have the maturity to get value out of these tools, but very few of them actually do.

The majority of “C” level executives make decisions based on gut feel and trust in subordinates. I don’t know of any of them that pore over the output of an EPM system to guide the business. I find it totally mind-boggling that billions are spent on these systems to collect, analyze and report on data that is rarely used by the supposed target audience and often has no direct correlation to the business goals or KPIs. (did we forget about balanced scorecards at some point?).

EPM in a mature organization is unlikely to be transformative since the underlying trees of metrics, disciplines and systems would already be in place. It could certainly allow for a lot of fine tuning. But it would be an evolutionary tool at best.

However, I think that attempts to implement EPM in a less mature organization can uncover the lack of discipline and the gaps in the other supporting systems. EPM as a catalyst can be revolutionary. Senior management would have to be open to supporting the underlying governance and process work required and the implementers would need to be honest about what gaps were uncovered during the design and implementation. Translating corporate strategy down into the various KGIs and KPIs, rebuilding broken and inefficient processes, blowing out the chaff and aligning around what’s important to the business is where the value would come from.

That’s just my opinion, of course.