Nucleus Research names Unit4 FP&A a Facilitator in 2021 CPM Value Matrix
We’re very happy to report yet another mention for Unit4 in the analyst press – this time for FP&A.
Nucleus Research publishes their CPM Technology Value Matrix every year, and in their 2021 iteration they’ve named Unit4 FP&A a Facilitator.
The CPM Technology Value Matrix
This year’s Matrix has been released in a climate of extreme uncertainty caused by COVID-19’s disruption to global markets. With businesses struggling to manage this uncertainty and unprecedented supply and demand fluctuations, we’ve entered a period where companies simply can’t afford to rely solely on historical data for the development of budgets and forecasts.
This disruption and increased need for predictive and even speculative forecasting and budgeting has been combined with a transition to remote-working setups. Resulting not only in an additional level of analysis complexity, but in a sharp realization: that relying on processes driven by emails and spreadsheets isn’t just inconvenient, it’s out of the question.
This drives the need to unify planning and gauge performance across individuals, teams, and departments. And the right CPM solution is a high value target for organizations looking to orchestrate and re-orchestrate their financial activities in the face of these challenges.
In this climate, Nucleus sees CPM vendors shifting their focus to developing and refining their planning and forecasting capabilities, with AI and Machine Learning functionalities beginning to deliver real results as organizations are pressured to consolidate planning across finance, HR, supply chain, sales, and marketing.
This trend is also leading to a sharp increase in focus on usability and user experience – with many vendors investing heavily in accessibility and in guided and automated workflows.
Nucleus’s analysis of key Corporate Performance Management (CPM) solutions assesses based on two axes – usability and functionality – and on the value that customers are realizing from each product’s capabilities. It provides a snapshot of the CPM technology market to inform buyers of how vendors are delivering value, and what they can expect in the future based on their investments today.
Unit4 FP&A’s performance: “Facilitator”
Our ranking as a Facilitator in the Matrix speaks to the culmination of our strategic investments in people experience. The report highlights our recent efforts to develop tighter integrations across our portfolio, which have led to the creation of a seamless user experience between Unit4 FP&A, our ERP solution, and our HCM solution.
Nucleus also highlight our heavy investments into AI-driven capabilities (which we believe are vital to creating next-generation experiences for users.) Our virtual assistant Wanda receives a mention and praise for “her” ability to use natural language processing to perform routine requests like opening specific files or reports. The ability to organically source specific numbers and fields with a simple text or voice command is also singled out as a prime example of ease-of-use in the platform.
The report goes on to explain that AI-validated data entry analyzes patterns and variances from historical data and defined rules to detect potential human error. And how our solution leverages ML to analyze deviations in budgets, identify gaps, and provide prescriptive options based on predicted impact. Our recently released Smart Forecaster tool – which leverages historical data, influence factors, and scenarios for single click predictive forecasts – also receives a mention.
We’re very pleased to say that the report not only gives a fair assessment of our strategic investments and their payoff in our product’s functionality and ease of use, but that its assessment of market conditions validates our early decisions to prioritize the features of our products that we’ve chosen to prioritize.
Our section of the report ends on a highly positive note:
“With recent user experience and interface upgrades and tighter integration between Unit4 FP&A and its ERP solutions, customers can utilize the full range of CPM functionality, from annual budgeting to the monthly close… The solution is flexible for ease of implementation, and users gain greater visibility across finance, sales, operations, HR, and inventory on the front-end.”