When it comes to financial information, businesses often have two sources of truth – the printed out versions circulating around the office and the real-time version, which changes constantly as sales staff work down to the wire before a period closes. Accurate up-to-the-minute data can often lag, from hours to days, but what if there was a single, real-time source of truth that everyone could access easily?
Oracle Financials Cloud is a unique multi-dimensional reporting and analysis platform that provides real-time access to financial information. Users can quickly report and analyze data from different perspectives within the same system used for operational accounting. By providing multiple reporting options, each tool has been tailored to deliver data in a way that’s most appropriate for its given audience – whether for management reports, financial analysis, transactional intelligence, or statutory reporting.
In addition to an enhanced version of the universally useful and used Drilldown, here are some of the key functional elements that are new, greatly enhanced, or previously unavailable tools you will find in Oracle Cloud Financials Reporting.
Balances are pre-aggregated at every possible summarization level across each dimension of the chart of accounts and accounting periods for multiple date-effective hierarchies. This results in extremely fast reports and queries. Reports and analytics can be refreshed on the fly, without having to run a process or program because the balances have already been pre-calculated. Multi-dimensional analysis is also instantaneous. Users can quickly slice and dice data across dimensions and drill up, down, and sideways on any parent level.
Traditionally, Business Intelligence (BI) applications are disconnected from transactional systems, forcing users to search for information. This information is typically stale since refreshing requires periodic scheduled updates. Business Intelligence is embedded directly into business processes so that all users have complete, consistent information when they need it, where they need it, and how they need it. As such, users can identify risks quicker and improve decision-making.
Hierarchies are defined in Oracle Fusion applications using tree functionality. Each account hierarchy is defined as a tree with one or more versions. Tree versions are used to track account hierarchies as they change over time. For example, an account hierarchy to summarize cost of goods has different accounts for 2011, versus 2010, based on changes in the business operations and newly added chart of accounts values. Chart of accounts values can be associated with multiple hierarchies by defining multiple trees. Using multiple trees allows you to create financial reports for different target audiences. For example, you can use different hierarchies to track cost centers, either by geography or line of business.
With mobile reporting, you can access the same secure data available in the hardline system, but with far less hassle. Mobile reporting gives users the ability to access reports and KPIs through any web-enabled device (tablet, phone, etc).
The Oracle Cloud Financials reporting platform offers a wealth of tools at your fingertips. The Financial Reporting Center allows users to design and view traditional financial reports (Balance Sheet and P&L). There’s no need to run the report – just open it and real-time balances are shown automatically. You can then drilldown from reports to subledger transactions, as well as publish reports in a variety of formats (MS Excel, PDF, MS Word, MS Powerpoint, etc). Use the Financial Reporting Center for professional quality, boardroom-ready financial statements, and have fun with all the additional report objects (text boxes, images, charts).
Smart View provides ad hoc multi-dimensional pivot analysis combined with MS office functionality. This tool allows accountants to view their balances, including hierarchy info, in MS Excel. You can save reports and queries offline, then open the spreadsheet and reconnect, pulling live data all the while. Smart View has the ability to build templates in MS Office applications and refresh with current data for monthly reporting packages.
Account Monitor is used for monitoring and controlling specified accounts against previous months’ results or budgets/forecasts. This tool automatically computes and displays variances and trends and defines critical accounts, thresholds, and rules. Account Monitor is used for exception-based account monitoring with multi-dimensional analysis and drilldown. Account Inspector is a drilldown from Account Monitor for account activity details. It provides pivot table-like analysis for on-line slice and dice assessment. This tool is used specifically for exception-based account monitoring with multi-dimensional analysis and drilldown on live data
BI Publisher is an XML-based reporting tool. It allows users to define extremely scalable reports based on templates built in MS Word or MS Excel. This tool is used for high volume operational reporting. Out of the box reports are also available.
Oracle Transaction Business Intelligence (OTBI) is Fusion’s replacement for Oracle Discoverer and BI Answers. It’s used for ad hoc queries of transactional data. It’s wizard-driven templates enable users to quickly develop new ad hoc reports without IT or development support. Oracle Business Intelligence Analytics (OBIA) is Fusion’s replacement for Oracle OBIEE. Here, users can view standard reports in dashboards with the ability to view data in tabular and/or graphical modes. It’s used for KPIs, metrics, and highly summarized queries from a data warehouse.
Check out the table below to determine what’s the best reporting tool for your job!
*Source: Oracle, “ERP Cloud Reporting Fundamentals”
In sum, Oracle Cloud Financials provides the reporting tools to allow users at all levels of the organization access to relevant, up-to-the-minute information needed to support business critical decisions. Time is money, and saving time and enhancing efficiency via Cloud Financials helps your business be more productive and profitable.