REVIEWER: Gary Blake, director of business solutions and IT for O&Y Enterprise.
BACKGROUND: O&Y Enterprise is one of Canada's leading third-party property management companies delivering management and leasing services to more than 40 million square feet of office, retail and industrial properties nationally. We provide property management services to all of O&Y REIT's owned properties, as well as a diverse client base consisting of financial institutions, insurance companies, major retailers and private investors. In addition, O&Y Enterprise also provides development and related advisory services to assist clients in repositioning their real estate assets to enhance their long-term value.
PLATFORMS: Intel, Microsoft SQL Server 2000, Microsoft Analysis Services 2000, IIs.
PROBLEM SOLVED: O&Y Enterprise's finance department prepares annual budgets and quarterly reforecasts. The budget inputs are obtained from 75 individuals across Canada. We were using an Excel-based approach whereby users would e-mail their completed templates to O&Y's corporate accounting group. Corporate accounting would then consolidate and roll-up all of the spreadsheets, which was a highly manual and time-consuming process. As a result, the turnaround time from data collection to review of the results was very long. We also have a requirement to allocate shared departments across other operating groups. Additionally, we perform client profitability reporting on a client-by-client basis.
PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: We used the budgeting module in Clarity Performance Management (CPM) to prepare our annual budget and reforecasts. With the use of CPM, rolling the results together became a non-event. Once the information was input by the 75 individuals, the results were already rolled up and we were able to start the analysis process immediately. We were able to develop and rapidly deploy this application in just four weeks.
STRENGTHS: The strengths of Clarity Performance Management include the ability to rapidly deploy the product as well as the Excel-like interface. Additionally, it is easy to customize and has simple integration with our existing Microsoft Analysis Services and SQL Server database.
WEAKNESSES: The CPM Toolkit functionality is not extended to the line-item detail pop-up windows.
SELECTION CRITERIA: Our primary requirement was a product that would work within our existing framework, and we also wanted a product with a solid reputation that had a minimal learning curve. We had an existing relationship with Clarity as they had performed work for us in a consulting role. Following a thorough review of Clarity Performance Management, we determined that it met all of our requirements and that our need to rapidly deploy the solution could be met. The decision was an easy one.
DELIVERABLES: With Clarity Performance Management, we can provide our annual budget and reforecasts and allocate costs across departments automatically. Furthermore, we can now download and upload data to our PeopleSoft system directly to and from CPM. We are also using CPM to produce client profitability reporting.
VENDOR SUPPORT: We used Clarity Systems to assist with the implementation of the budgeting module because of the rapid deployment that was required from our end. The support from Clarity, both during the implementation and post-implementation has been excellent, and we are very happy with the support received. When an issue occurs that we cannot resolve, Clarity is actively involved and interested in helping us achieve success on the project.
DOCUMENTATION: Clarity Systems' documentation was a terrific complement to the outstanding implementation support we have received. It is very clear and easy to understand.
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