Why Take Financial Planning and Analysis (FP&A) to SAP Analytics Cloud?

As enterprises grow and expand, the planning and forecasting process becomes more complex.


Often, the process is lengthy, confusing, and cumbersome because the level at which you prepare the plan and forecast is different than the level at which the actuals are booked. This forces users to `prepare the plan and forecast at the same level as actuals. In addition, when many people are involved with preparing the plans and forecasts, keeping track of the different versions and revisions of the plan and forecast can become difficult.  


These are just a few challenges people face when it comes to planning and forecasting, and the reasons why many organizations are turning to enterprise planning in the cloud.


Benefits of the Cloud

The cloud environment consists of hardware, software, and services used to remotely provision scalable IT resources on demand and in a metered manner. In this context, that means the customer’s cloud usage is tracked and recorded for pricing purposes. Benefits of using cloud-based solutions include enhanced collaboration, scalability, flexibility, speed, improved data security, automatic software updates, disaster recovery and backups, and pay-as-you-go pricing models.


Businesses are accustomed to hosting software applications to run their processes on-premise—meaning that the hardware, software, and services are hosted in data centers owned or leased and maintained by the businesses themselves. This requires a considerable level of upfront capital investment, along with hiring and retaining staff to support and maintain the system. This kind of upfront capital investment made by a business means that resources are locked in to address this requirement to host and manage servers, software, and applications that could have been deployed for other purposes such as investing in growth opportunities (plants and machinery to expand into new markets, new product development, etc.). To address the concern of the pricey upfront investment, providers of hardware and software decided to deliver these services in the cloud with the pay-as-you-go model.


SAP Analytics Cloud is a cloud-based solution that allows users to discover, analyze, plan, predict, and collaborate in a single platform. It offers capabilities for planning, analytics, predictive analysis, and application design. It can be used on top of SAP business applications, third-party software, and custom solutions to meet analytic and planning requirements. In addition, it enables real-time data analytics on numerous SAP solutions (SAP S/4HANA, SAP SuccessFactors, SAP Integrated Business Planning [SAP IBP], SAP Business Warehouse [SAP BW], etc.), as well as on non-SAP systems.


About SAP Analytics Cloud: Financial Planning and Analysis Book

To better understand the benefits and configuration of enterprise financial planning in SAP Analytics Cloud, we’ve published SAP Analytics Cloud: Financial Planning and Analysis.


Start with an introduction to SAP Analytics Cloud and learn how its capabilities improve planning and forecasting processes. You’ll discover the different options for provisioning the data required to support FP&A in SAP Analytics Cloud.


The next chapter illustrates how SAP Analytics Cloud supports different planning scopes, such as long-term strategic planning, operational planning and budgeting, and rapid rolling forecasting. Then learn how to use the solution to automate key parts of the planning process with step-by-step instructions.


The book continues with details on analysis and simulations. It explains how the platform allows businesses to link and reconcile detailed, operational-level reporting to high-level strategic analyses, and shows how you can model what-if scenarios by simulating the impact of changes to key assumptions in the analysis.


You’ll get details on how SAP Analytics Cloud can create centralized workflows. This chapter illustrates step-by-step processes that can streamline the assignment, execution, and approval of planning tasks. Next, learn about some of the common stakeholder groups that need access to the final results and outputs of enterprise planning processes.


Get familiar with best practices for implementing and optimizing your planning processes. Finally, conclude with discussion of the steps an organization can take to sustain its investment in SAP Analytics Cloud, including how to support and maintain existing developments.


Who Is This Book For?

This comprehensive guide is for a wide range of user groups, including FI-CO consultants, FP&A business process owners, and implementation project teams. It will help these readers understand the core planning, analysis, discovery, collaborative, and predictive features of the tool.


About the Author

Satwik Das is an associate partner at TruQua, an IBM company. He has more than 15 years of experience leading and managing large-scale SAP analytics, financial planning, and finance transformation projects. He has extensive experience in SAP Business Warehouse, SAP Business Planning and Consolidation, and various reporting tools, and he has worked with clients to implement SAP Analytics Cloud as the platform for their financial planning and analytics (FP&A) processes. He has also managed blueprinting involving SAP S/4HANA and Central Finance. Satwik enjoys architecting and designing solutions to manage clients’ complex reporting and planning needs.


Marius Berner is a principal business analytics consultant at TruQua, an IBM company, with more than seven years of experience designing, implementing, and delivering solutions for planning, budgeting, forecasting, analytics, performance management, and financial consolidations. Marius’s project experience includes end-to-end implementations, business and finance transformations, and process automation and optimization; his strong blend of functional and technical knowledge allows him to fill roles in project management, business process and solution design, and technical configuration and development.


Suvir Shahani is a cloud planning and consolidation specialist with more than 22 years of experience working with clients across various industry verticals, including financial services, CPG, manufacturing, energy, pharmaceutical, distribution, and consumer electronics. Suvir has led and managed multiple business transformation initiatives as a finance lead to design and architect solutions to improve operational efficiencies in the areas of planning, consolidations, accounting, and controlling. Suvir has led many client engagements from sales to delivery, and has hands-on experience with and deep knowledge of finance processes.


Ankit Harish is a senior managing consultant at TruQua, an IBM company, and has more than 15 years of experience in finance analytics. He has a key focus on the media and entertainment industry leveraging SAP and non-SAP technologies. Ankit has led large-scale finance transformation programs and defined reporting and planning roadmaps for clients. He has experience managing cross-functional business stakeholders, global deployment teams, workshops, blueprint design sessions, and integration teams in the areas of SAP Analytics Cloud, SAP BW/4HANA, SAP S/4HANA Finance, and standard and embedded SAP Business Planning and Consolidation.


How to Purchase

If you’re interested in purchasing SAP Analytics Cloud: Financial Planning and Analysis, follow this link and choose the format that works best for you: e-book, print edition, or bundle (both e-book and print).


If you want to continue learning about SAP Analytics Cloud, or if you want information on other upcoming books or special offers, make sure to sign up for our topic newsletters or our weekly blog recap.


SAP Analytics Cloud: Financial Planning and Analysis
SAP Analytics Cloud: Financial Planning and Analysis

FP&A is now in the cloud! In this comprehensive guide, begin by provisioning your data for financial planning and analysis in SAP Analytics Cloud. Then follow step-by-step instructions to set up the planning process and use SAP Analytics Cloud’s automated planning logic to calculate key metrics. Learn how to perform simulations to model what-if scenarios, streamline your planning workflow, and share results with stakeholders. With details on implementation best practices, this is your all-in-one resource!

Learn More

SAP PRESS is the world's leading SAP publisher, with books on ABAP, SAP S/4HANA, SAP CX, intelligent technologies, SAP Business Technology Platform, and more!