Corporate Performance Management systems have reached a truly remarkable and complex stage of development. Once relegated to the preparation of consolidated financial statements (very often for compliance purposes), a well-implemented CPM today is now able to manage planning and control processes, interact with business intelligence systems, and manage aspects of Corporate Social Responsibility and Governance, Risk Management and Compliance (GRC), covering a flow of information that ranges from data collection to final reporting for internal and external stakeholders.

All these processes and actors (with as many needs) are involved in the operation of a single system, generating a complexity that somehow has to be managed.

In this respect, every company is an experience in itself. There are small and medium sized companies more geared towards implementing a single CPM model that interfaces with other software. There are big listed companies taking advantage of the synergies of a single solution. There are projects that involve a “one shot” installation of multiple modules to optimise implementation costs, and cases in which implementation is carried out step-by-step, prioritising the most essential modules.

In each of these cases, and despite every project starting with the best intentions, a professional is required to manage the system in terms of:

■ managing the master data (accounts, companies, processes, etc.)

■ managing the automatic routines (data copying and duplication, database optimisation, etc.)

■ managing reporting (set of reports, dimension navigability, etc.)

■ interfacing with support and troubleshooting

This role is known by different names depending on the company. The title that best represents it in my view is “Single System Administrator“.

Unlike the CDO (Chief Data Officer), who focuses primarily on data structuring, consistency and coherence, the Single System Administrator is a hybrid figure combining accounting, planning and control skills most closely linked to the management of CPM to support the CFO and all the system users. Single System Administrators are not consolidators (although they are familiar with the technicalities of consolidation) nor are they system engineers (although they have the basic skills of an ICT manager).

As you can imagine, the role of a Single System Administrator (hereinafter SSA) can be performed by various people, inside or outside the company. Despite this, choosing the right SSA to reflect the operation of the company, and the CPM project implemented within it, is crucial to ensure the best use of a CPM. Choosing the wrong person to perform the role of an SSA would be like asking a fireman to direct the traffic.

Stay tuned to discover the 3 fundamental variables to consider when choosing your SSA!

(View this post on Tagetik’s blog)

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