New Magic Quadrant for Cloud Financial Planning and Analysis Solutions

Last week, Gartner released its new Magic Quadrant for Cloud Financial Planning and Analysis Solutions. According to Gartner, “’Magic Quadrant for Cloud Strategic Corporate Performance Management Solutions’ has been renamed ‘Magic Quadrant for Cloud Financial Planning and Analysis Solutions.’ It covers the same criteria as in 2017, with the addition of management reporting. Gartner has dropped use of the term ‘corporate performance management’.” We believe the change in name reflects that Gartner has officially retired the concept of “CPM” and reclassified into “financial planning and analysis (FP&A)” and “financial close” to more accurately reflect customer purchase patterns.

Gartner’s evaluation in the Cloud FP&A report was based on SAP’s ability to execute and completeness of vision. SAP was named a Visionary.

Corporate Performance Management (CPM) Heads into Retirement

According to Gartner[1], “by the early 2010s, Gartner identified two significant trends in CPM:

  1. A new category of solutions had emerged that supported management of the financial close, which Gartner termed the ‘last mile of finance.’ These enhanced financial control and automation (EFCA) applications were targeted more at controllers and senior finance personnel, rather than at CEOs and CFOs;
  2. There was a shift away from ‘holistic’ strategy management and an increased focus on planning. The emergence of digital business meant that many CEOs were focused on business model transformation, which demanded more-agile planning processes that linked financial plans with operational plans, especially in sales and marketing. CEOs were less interested in ‘boiling the ocean’ with an all-inclusive strategy management system.”

Additionally, Gartner stated, “companies are being more pragmatic and pursuing more point solution approaches to performance management, many getting back to core financial management value propositions. Gartner is, therefore, retiring the concept of CPM and, instead, will use the following market classifications:

  • Financial planning and analysis, which replaces strategic CPM, and
  • Financial close, which replaces financial CPM.”

Planning (Is) for Everyone

Whether you’re in finance, operations, another business function, or the C-suite, everyone is involved in some form of planning process and SAP Analytics Cloud was designed to be one, simple cloud-based planning “platform” for collaborative business planning across the organization.

SAP Analytics Cloud brings together planning and analysis, predictive analytics, and business intelligence capabilities in one application so you have all the analytics capabilities you need at your fingertips to make better data-driven decisions versus having to use and stitch together separate tools.

With the Sapphire Now release of SAP Analytics Cloud, customers can act in the moment, continuously collaborate, and become an intelligent enterprise leveraging SAP Analytics Cloud embedded with SAP S/4HANA Cloud (for planning, analysis, and execution in one financial management suite), in-context social collaboration capabilities, and Smart Assist which brings automated insights directly into your planning process.

Smart Assist includes Smart Discovery (uses machine learning to surface key drivers of performance without having to look), Smart Insights (augments data with dynamic narrative to provide more information behind the numbers), and Search to Insight (leverages natural language query so you can find answers as simply as using Siri, Alexa, or some other digital assistant).

Bottom Line

So whether you’re an FP&A professional trying to align operational plans to financial results and be a better business partner, or in another part of the business itself, you have one collaborative business planning platform for a single version of the truth to make better data-driven decisions.

Learn More

  • To find out more about SAP’s solutions for planning and analysis, including SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Digital Boardroom, please visit SAP.com.
  • Register for the complimentary report, Gartner Magic Quadrant for Cloud Financial Planning and Analysis Solutions.

[1]Gartner, “Back to Basics: The Refocusing of Corporate Performance Management,” John E. Van Decker, Nigel Rayner, Christopher Iervolino, 31 October 2017.

Gartner Magic Quadrant for Cloud Financial Planning and Analysis Solutions, Christopher Iervolino, John E. Van Decker, 24 July 2018. Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.