4 Simple Rules for Successful CPM
When you leave your home in the morning, do you know your destination or do you wander aimlessly? It’s safe to say, you likely know your destination. This is step 1 for implementing CPM (corporate performance management) software – the goal must come before the journey.
Prophix is in business because it’s human nature to set goals, both consciously and subconsciously. Tracking progress against these goals is hard. Why? It’s easy to make your goals more complicated than they need to be, making it difficult to focus. This is step 2 for CPM – simplicity drives innovation.
What about the process? Great question. A planning process is key to monitoring organizational and operational performance. Your process should be driven by requirements, more so than corporate culture and expected timelines.
Would a budget process with 37 drivers per department, all unique and based on multi-step inputs, encourage the thinking needed by managers to develop the means to enhance performance? The answer is no.
CPM solutions can support complex processes like this and Prophix does it exceptionally well. However, time after time we have seen this approach die under its own weight.
Success is attainable when a goal is combined with a planning process that performance owners (executives, managers, employees) can clearly articulate in an elevator ride (i.e. 30 seconds). Now, don’t get me wrong, there are business operations that demand complexity (i.e. engineering-based activities, manufacturing output, etc.) but even these approaches can be broken down into their most crucial parts.
Remember, the goal of corporate performance management is to focus on the outcome and understand the planning process. This is step 3 of CPM – use a planning process that is easy to implement and maintain and allows the audience to focus on outcomes, not the process.
What about the technology used for CPM? This technology today is affordable, awesome and available -so use it! CPM solutions can be on-premise, in the Cloud or a bit of both. When choosing a technology, security is the number one factor to consider. Security should protect you from internal risks such as data loss, system outages, as well as external risks like hack attacks and data breaches, all of which are paramount to success.
Yet, focus is also a key part of success. Use a technology platform that allows your CPM audience to focus on goal attainment. Also, choose a solution that maximizes user freedom and creativity without added help (IT, etc.). Allow your own experts to maintain the technology. This is step 4 of CPM – select a technology solution that supports a focus on goal attainment.
One final thought, we sometimes work with clients who buy Prophix and assume that the system will create their budgeting process. This can be equated with buying a car and expecting it to teach you to how to drive. Prophix can support a bottom-up, top-down, centralized, decentralized, driver-based, input-based, cascading logic-driven approaches or any other kind of budget process for that matter (so too can Excel and our competitors). However, to maximize the benefits of your CPM software, you should first know your culture, your most efficient approach to budgeting, planning and performance monitoring, and your goals for automating your processes. Again, goals come before the journey. The journey nonetheless will be exciting, frustrating and successful if you follow steps 1, 2, 3 and 4.