Computation, calculations and correlations are core capabilities that any business analytics platform should support to enable performance management processes such as interactive planning, forecasting, and what-if scenario modeling.
Yet from our experience working with finance executives, we realize that their existing systems and processes are broken. Quite often, we hear things like:
- “It sometimes takes 30 days after the quarterly close to collect data and crunch all the numbers just to get managers their actuals, so they’re literally flying blind during that time.”
- “We spend three solid weeks every quarter updating our budget, which doesn’t give us the fast visibility we need to manage our business.”
- “We’ve tried to improve our forecast process by doing more what-if analysis but our current system could not provide results fast enough for us to make any timely decisions.”
In many cases, the root cause of these symptoms is a highly manual spreadsheet-based process that requires a team of individuals with specialized skills to execute – which is a significant effort given that data and inputs are constantly changing. In other cases, legacy planning systems, and even what we call “1st generation in-memory” planning systems, are failing to provide the model flexibility, computational speed, and scale necessary to handle complex driver-based budgeting and provide true real-time, what-if analysis.
At Tidemark, it is our job to listen to those pain points, build innovative solutions that relieve them, and help companies transform their business by empowering everyone in their organization to participate in analytical processes and act on insights relevant to their scope of work. To deliver on that promise in the right way, we have re-imagined the entire stack of business analytics, precisely by leveraging the cloud at the core as a computational platform.
Whether in-memory or on disk, the analytics space is dominated by vendors who use a multi-dimensional representation of the data, or cubes. Cubes deliver some significant advantages over traditional relational approaches for solving analytic use cases by providing pivoting, aggregation, and hierarchical viewing and drilling. Yet most organizations find cubes don’t fully deliver what they need anymore. As the amount of data has increased significantly (RFID & sensors, weather, geo-spatial, Twitter streams, customer sentiment, etc.) and the user community is moving away from the “Pivot Table Gurus” to business users “at the edge” – all of whom demand simple, flexible, and actionable interfaces to information – cubes fail to deliver.
This is why one of the core design tenants of Tidemark applications is NO CUBES! We wanted to free customers from the restrictive, confusing world of cubes and build applications that allow users to work the way they want by leveraging the power, flexibility and scalabiliy of the cloud. Tidemark Empower Computational Services are built to leverage native cloud deployment and massively distributed storage and computation. More importantly, as a platform Tidemark leverages the right techniques for many diverse analytic processes – a stark contrast to legacy systems built around one or two standard data structures and algorithms that perform well in one (read only) but not all (high-volume data entry in an interactive planning process) analytic processes.
Tidemark has completely re-imagined how applications can support sophisticated analytic processes, such as planning, driver-based budgeting, and real-time, what-if scenario modeling. So save the cubes for your cocktails! You can finally work the way you want – with an intelligent application built for today’s business challenges.
Stay tuned for future installments that provide additional details on Tidemark’s Empower Computational Services.