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Pacific Brands Improves Financial Data Integrity with Hyperion FDM

  • March 01 2007, 1:00am EST
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REVIEWER: Julie Lo Giudice, business systems manager for Pacific Brands.

BACKGROUND: Pacific Brands manages "Everyday Essential Brands," including Clarks, Dunlop, Everlast and Hush Puppies, across Australia and New Zealand. The company's commitment to market leadership ensures a number one or number two position across its major product categories. Pacific Brands has more than 8,000 employees and $1.6 billion in 2006 revenue.

HARDWARE PLATFORMS: Citrix servers maintained by Hewlett-Packard. End users on Microsoft XP laptop computers.

PROBLEM SOLVED: Each of Pacific Brands' divisions entered and processed financial data slightly differently. Once files were loaded into Hyperion Enterprise, employees could potentially adjust numbers, which threatened data integrity. Employees couldn't trace financial results to the source transaction to verify accuracy. The organization needed a common platform for analysis, reporting and a single entry point for financial data. In addition, data integrity was improved with centralized, standardized handling of enterprise data.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: Hyperion System 9 Financial Data Quality Management (Hyperion FDM) helps us immensely by enabling us to channel all of our financial information from eight independent general ledger environments through one centralized data mapping solution. Combined with standardized data processes, employees throughout the entire enterprise now treat financial accounts the same. All of our financial data goes through Hyperion FDM, which makes our consolidation and analysis much more meaningful and enables our auditors to trace data to its source and more easily reconcile accounts. We recently used Hyperion FDM to pull data straight from our Hyperion Enterprise consolidation system into our tax software, without having to manually handle data. This streamlined the tax preparation process to deliver faster results with no errors. We also easily integrate the financial data of acquired companies into our systems. We find that Hyperion FDM provides tremendous visibility into our data, ensuring it's accurate and consistently reported.

STRENGTHS: Hyperion FDM provides more visibility into our data than ever before. We can drill from a trial balance and see all the related accounts down to the individual entries. We still have the flexibility to make manual adjustments, but we've gained the ability to see and understand where all the numbers originated. Our employees have gained a better understanding of financial results. We've centralized the management of financial data, providing us with unprecedented data integrity, financial reporting consistency and account standardization. This adds up to FDM providing us with greater confidence in our numbers.

WEAKNESSES: Many of our solution challenges are user related, such as not synchronizing passwords between multiple systems. The challenge with Hyperion FDM was no clear transition from the early version of the product to the new Web-based version. With some effort on our part, we did ultimately convert and are now happy with the Web version.

SELECTION CRITERIA: We knew we needed to centralize financial data management to improve data quality. After seeing just one demonstration of Hyperion FDM, we knew it was the best product to meet all of our needs. It's relatively easy to set up and use, yet flexible enough to handle many different business divisions and integrate new acquisitions. It works seamlessly with our existing Hyperion Enterprise and general ledger environments.

DELIVERABLES: More than 70 users across the enterprise enter their financial data into Hyperion FDM via the Web. We now consolidate our financial results in minutes instead of hours. Users, auditors and managers can request audit trail reports via the Web that are delivered to their desktops fast.

VENDOR SUPPORT: Hyperion is there to answer our technical support questions and help us resolve any implementation issues that arise. They've helped us see what is possible with the system and how it can continue to help us improve our financial processes.

DOCUMENTATION: Hyperion FDM comes with clear documentation and online help. Our real challenge was aligning it with all of our ledgers and accounts and ensuring that users understood the account structure. We created a user guide that makes it easy for users to follow our new processes.

Hyperion System 9 Financial Data Quality Management
Hyperion Solutions Corporation
5450 Great America Parkway
Santa Clara, CA 95054
(408) 588-8000

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