It’s Not Just about the Numbers, Stakeholders Want Context


Corporate and management reporting is experiencing significant change in today’s Digital Age. As reported earnings become more volatile, corporate guidance, and the ability for management to clearly explain the quality and sustainability of corporate performance, is more important than ever.

The ability to recognize and explain corporate value is becoming a competitive differentiator. From your customers and your business to regulatory bodies, everyone’s demanding that you report accurately on your data—and provide narrative that surrounds it.

In a recent survey, 90% of respondents agreed that expanding qualitative commentary in management reporting processes was critical to their organisation. Yet, more than half of respondents were not confident in their tools to provide sufficient collaboration to produce that qualitative commentary.

In 1975, tangible assets such as plant, property, and equipment constituted 80 percent of total corporate value on the S&P 500. Today, those tangible assets constitute just 20 percent of corporate value, compared to 80 percent of the value now created by intangible assets such as customers, talent, and intellectual property.

The shift to digitally-enabled business models is clearly influencing shareholder valuation strategies. Investors are paying more for companies with business models that embrace and emphasize “intangible assets”, leveraging the wisdom of crowds to co-create products and services.

Reporting Challenges

While there is a clear need for increased commentary and narrative in reporting, most performance reporting processes remain manual and ad hoc. It is a monthly or quarterly fire drill to get report packages destined for internal and/or external stakeholders completed and delivered.

The time-consuming process is completed manually - often lacking process rigor and collaboration. Errors are made in combining data (what) with narrative (who, when, why), especially with rekeying data into the report. In addition, organisations lack the ability to analyse the data to validate the narrative.

The disconnected nature of the process means it is difficult to bring subject-matter experts into the process for centralised commentary on content. This also makes it harder to track progress and to see who is currently responsible for individual areas of content.

Combine Data and Narrative

What businesses need to overcome these challenges is a software process that provides a secure, collaborative, and process-driven approach for defining, authoring, reviewing, and publishing financial and management report packages for internal and external stakeholders.

One such option is Oracle’s Enterprise Performance Reporting Cloud. It uniquely combines management, narrative, and statutory reporting needs in a single solution. Whether you are using your existing documents, a previous report package, or letting the system automatically create ‘doclets’ (individual areas of a report package that are assigned to authors, who provide the report content), you can quickly and easily create a report package in mere minutes, with minimal information.

The system walks you through the setup to enable the phases you need for your report package. You set the due dates, add doclets, and assign users to their roles (Owner, Author, Approver, Reviewer, and Viewer). A Report Centre provides a single web interface for report package contributors. Report package owners define, manage, monitor, and interact with content through this interface, while assigned users see only the content applicable to the role they have been assigned.

In addition, users can easily take a deeper dive into the data without leaving the application. Oracle Enterprise Performance Reporting Cloud includes the ability to perform multidimensional and other analyses on financial data. Variance analysis is a click away for business users. Models can be secured for a personal yet powerfully intuitive view of the data. When the data is combined with narrative, you gain actionable insight. Moreover, data access plus data integration provides ‘one version of the truth’ on a single reporting platform.

Report Confidently

Increased demand, both internally and externally, for information—from multiple data sources— can make it challenging to have confidence in reported results. Oracle Enterprise Performance Reporting Cloud enables you to easily combine system-of-record data into your narrative reporting. Authors can integrate both on-premises and cloud-based EPM and BI data sources directly, as well as combine data from Oracle and other ERP systems, thereby leveraging existing IT investments. This helps provide trust and reliability that the numbers and information are accurate.

Oracle Enterprise Performance Reporting Cloud Service enables business users to participate in the narrative reporting process through the web interface on a variety of devices, including desktops and tablets. Whether you are a report-package owner, an approver, or a reviewer, you are not bound to a bulky device or complex document system to monitor, manage, review, approve, or sign off on content.

If you prefer the Microsoft Office environment, you can still author, approve, and review tasks through Oracle Hyperion Smart View for Office. Collaboration throughout the process is crucial to getting the most accurate picture possible, and helps shrink the time it takes to define, produce and deliver reports.

Security is critical throughout this process. Users have instant visibility of the progress and status of the reporting lifecycle, and the system efficiently brings knowledge workers in and out of the process based on their role. With security to handle sensitive content at all levels, from network to storage, you have the peace of mind that your most important and confidential data is only visible to authorised users.

Do you think it’s time to consider streamlining your enterprise performance reporting with tools that combine data plus narrative in a single, secure, collaborative environment?

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