PlaidCloud’s Profitability & Cost Management solution provides an easy transition and fills in the missing pieces for those coming from SAP PCM. Built by Tartan Solutions, a leading implementer of SAP PCM since 2005, PlaidCloud’s Profitability & Cost Management solution comes with dimension management and point-and-click assignments providing a very familiar approach to SAP PCM users. However, PlaidCloud also includes numerous advantages over SAP PCM as well.
PlaidCloud feels familiar to SAP PCM users
As SAP PCM users ourselves, we loved SAP PCM’s dimension creation ability directly in the user interface, complete with alternate hierarchies. PlaidCloud extends this functionality through accommodating additional master data elements such as properties and values. Alternate hierarchies enable inclusion of both leaves and folders/roll-up points. This makes it much easier to manage and automatically update alternate hierarchies as the main hierarchy is adjusted.
SAP PCM Activity Dimension
PlaidCloud assignment screens extend the familiar feel of SAP PCM’s point & click assignment screens. Unlike SAP PCM, creating assignments at any level of the main hierarchy or alternate hierarchies is possible. Additionally, with PlaidCloud, users are unconstrained by the fixed dimensional structure of SAP PCM. Core tables such as Line Item Values, Activity Driver Value, and resultant Cost Object Value tables contain an unrestricted number of dimensions in PlaidCloud.
PCM Assignment Screen
PlaidCloud Assignment Screen
In our experience, a large portion of the effort needed for building and deploying a sustainable cost allocation model involves the acquisition, sanitization, and homogenization of driver data, financials, and dimensional master data. PlaidCloud provides end-to-end solution designed with this in mind.
PlaidCloud comes equipped with configurable connectors that pull data directly from ERP systems, data warehouses, APIs, and flat files. PlaidCloud even enables use of agents that reside behind firewalls for securely accessing data, files, and systems that are hidden behind the firewall.
In PlaidCloud, configurable steps enable data cleaning that cover the vast majority of all real world needs. Unique edge cases are handled with configurable expressions.
Costing and profitability implementations often rely on bringing together data from different sources into a single model. Point-and-click interfaces allow collecting data from different ERP instances, even entirely different ERP platforms, as well as data warehouses and consolidated planning & budgeting systems. PlaidCloud workflows easily allow combining data from different sources without code (no/low code solution).
One of the key differentiators of SAP PCM was its ability to easily and transparently handle off-label requirements that went beyond capabilities of other cost modeling software by allowing users to write rules and user defined functions (UDFs) in Visual Basic for Applications (VBA). PlaidCloud contains dozens of easy to use data transformations. Additionally, PlaidCloud also fully supports a modern UDF capability. Advanced users solve idiosyncratic problems with a built-in UDF support for both Python and SQL. These bespoke UDFs can even use modern version control systems such as Git.
For all its virtues, SAP PCM struggled at times with extremely large data volumes. PlaidCloud’s foundation rests on a massively parallel processing (MPP) data architecture. With Greenplum as its underlying data store, PlaidCloud handles massive datasets in a way that makes them performant and responsive for end users. Since Greenplum scales horizontally, data size is generally not a concern and operations occur at the transaction level rather than needing to summarize data as before.
With PlaidCloud’s ability to handle large data and remain performant, reporting and analytics occur directly on the data without needing cubes or other specially designed analytics systems. PlaidCloud includes a number of reporting capabilities including dashboards, PDF reports, file exports, and direct Microsoft Excel integration. Learn more about reporting & data visualization in PlaidCloud on our data visualization solution page.
Migrate from PCM
If your organization is looking for a modern replacement for SAP PCM, look no further than PlaidCloud. PlaidCloud is a modern financial analyst’s workbench, complete with with full set of features necessary to meet the financial modeling and data wrangling needs of your organization. Furthermore, PlaidCloud comes stocked with a rapid deployment solution that enables migration from an SAP PCM model directly to PlaidCloud with automated conversion process. Import hundreds of models automatically and cut migration time, effort, risk, and expense down considerably.
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If your company has an existing SAP PCM implementation that needs a new home, contact us today.