KScope, ODTUG’s annual conference for Oracle Developers, was held just a couple of weeks ago. And Oracle product managers were out en masse to reveal new offerings, application features, and product roadmaps.
The Oracle mantra was pretty simple: cloud, cloud, cloud, and more cloud. In fact, if you drank a shot every time you heard the word “cloud” at KScope16, you would have been in a drunken stupor 5 minutes into Sunday’s EPM Symposium. Really, though, this is no surprise. Cloud services was the centerpiece of Larry Ellison’s Oracle OpenWorld 2015 keynote address.
So, if you’re a Hyperion customer or implementation specialist using FDMEE what does all of this cloud rhetoric mean for you? Here’s what you need to know.
FDMEE and Hybrid Support
Oracle mothership doesn’t see companies taking all of their EPM applications to the cloud right away. In fact, Oracle expects most companies will go for a hybrid approach – a mix of cloud-based applications and on-premises or hosted applications – for the foreseeable future. In a hybrid world, companies need a simple, efficient solution to collect, transform and load data to all of their EPM applications. This is where FDMEE comes into play.
As of Release 18.104.22.168.200, on-premises FDMEE can integrate with on-premises and cloud-based EPM applications. So, now you can use on-prem FDMEE to load your actuals data to Hyperion Financial Management (HFM) and to load your budgeting and forecast data to Oracle Planning and Budgeting Cloud Service (PBCS). Yeah, this is kind of a big deal. It’s so significant that we re-worked our Peloton FDMEE Hands-on Training for this year’s KScope to highlight cloud integration.
So you might be wondering: Why would we want to use on-premises FDMEE to integrate data with our cloud apps anyway? Here are 3 good reasons.
- Direct Integration with ERP Systems – On-premises FDMEE can connect directly to ERP systems. FDMEE for Cloud (the version that comes with PBCS) cannot.
- Data Synchronization – With on-premises FDMEE you can easily synchronize data between your cloud and on-premises EPM applications.
- Scripting – FDMEE scripting is used to extend and customize product functionality to suit your needs. (Think automation and email notification.) For security reasons, you don’t get scripting with FDMEE for Cloud.
If you already have on-premises FDMEE licensed and you’re implementing PBCS, it’s a no-brainer. With on-prem FDMEE you can have one application as hub for all Oracle EPM data integrations, from on-premises to cloud. If you’re a cloud-only customer you’d have to make the case for one or more of the above purposes to justify additional licensing for on-prem FDMEE.
While the cloud and hybrid support was definitely the big FDMEE takeaway at KScope16, there were some other noteworthy items.
What’s New to On-prem FDMEE
The Oracle product team highlighted what’s new to on-premises FDMEE for Release 22.214.171.124.x.
- Data Synchronization (introduced in 126.96.36.199.000) – Feature allows you to easily copy data from a source EPM application to a target EPM application.
- Universal Data Adapter (introduced in 188.8.131.52.100) – This new adapter is used to directly integrate with a source database table or view. UDA is an alternative to the open interface adapter.
- Direct Integration with EPM Cloud (introduced in 184.108.40.206.200) – See FDMEE and Hybrid Support above.
- FDMEE and Data Relationship Management (DRM) Integration (introduced in 220.127.116.11.200 and requires DRM 18.104.22.168.340 or above) – You can now use FDMEE as the mechanism to extract hierarchies form Orcale EBS and PeopleSoft and push the metadata to DRM. With FDMEE and DRM integration you can also use DRM to manage FDMEE data load mappings.
What’s Coming to FDMEE
- Text-based Data Loading to Planning – (Finally!) FDMEE will be able to load text-based values to a Planning application. This is great for Planning Smart Lists.
- Metadata Loading – Soon users will be able to use FDMEE to consume file-based metadata and push metadata updates to downstream EPM target apps. (This will be a welcome replacement to the EPMA interface tables and custom solutions using ODI.)
- Direct File Loading to Target Apps – Using this new data load method, end users will be able to skip data transformation logic altogether for highly optimized data loading. Think flat file loads to Essbase in Native Essbase format.
- Mapping Review Mode – The ability to grant read-only privileges to data load mappings in FDMEE.
- Support for additional cloud services, such as Oracle Financial Consolidation and Close Cloud (FCCCS).
And now the caveats…
The Oracle Safe Harbor; we all know this one by now. When it comes to roadmap stuff, Oracle makes no promises as to when a new feature will be available; Oracle even reserves the right to deep-six it for whatever reason. Next, the Oracle product team has their marching orders: it’s cloud first, baby. Therefore, if a feature is shared by both on-premises FDMEE and FDMEE for Cloud expect to see it in the cloud version first and on-prem a few months later.
FDMEE 22.214.171.124: There’s Still Life in the Old Dog Yet
It’s safe to expect new features every 3-to-4 months for on-premises FDMMEE 126.96.36.199, by way of past set updates (PSUs). Oracle’s next version of on-premises EPM software will be Release 12, a major update to the EPM platform. (That’s right. no more 11.x releases.) But we’re hearing Release 12 isn’t expected until the latter half of 2017. (Safe Harbor! Safe Harbor!) Even though 188.8.131.52 debuted nearly 18 months ago, it has plenty of life ahead of it. And with increased demand and functionality for hybrid support, expect lots of new features for FDMEE.