Enterprise Performance Management (EPM) - also known as Corporate Performance Management - is the process of managing and understanding an organisation. Both “how did we do, and why did we do it?” and “what should we do, and how should we do it?” are answered by EPM. It includes all stakeholders connected to managing the organisation, whether it is managing strategies, plans or execution. Think of EPM as a closed-loop fact-based decision-maker, with the ability to enable and facilitate the possibility of linking financial and operational metrics.
There is a difference between EPM as a process and EPM as a system. All organisations could argue that they already have some sort of EPM process in place. It could be running your financial reports in Excel as a way of following and understanding the finances and fluctuations over time. It could also be the process of setting up a yearly budget. On the other hand, the EPM system is where the EPM processes are facilitated. The system helps improve the process and makes it more efficient. It is common that organisations use different suppliers for different types of data, and it is the EPM system which integrates them all, making the process faster and creating alignment across functions.
Financial Management is one of the key building blocks of the EPM process, including both the legal and operational reporting requirements for finance. Instead of merely loading data into your everyday business, EPM systems helps you control the metrics and see the results quickly and with assurance. It allows the organisation to consolidate your accomplishments, successes and failures. Not only from a finance perspective but also the HR, Sales, Marketing and IT departments will profit from implementing an EPM system, making it a benefit for the organisation as a whole. Financial Management answers the question “how did we do, and why did we do it?”
Budgeting and Forecasting is another key dimension within the EPM process. How you should manage your organisation is determined by what goals and expectations you have set. When a solid EPM system is integrated, the organisation is given the possibility to make informed decisions based on facts and historical data and compare it to plans and forecasts. Future planning will be focused on analysing and understanding instead of implementing and configuring. In the long run, EPM systems will assist your organisation to succeed by simply letting you manage and understand your organisation in a faster and more efficient way. Budgeting and Forecasting answers the question “what should we do, and how should we do it?”