Oracle Smart View: Training For Users Beyond Finance

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Challenge

The Financial Systems team at this organization utilizes Oracle® Hyperion Planning™ and Oracle Fusion Financials™ cubes to manage their planning, budgeting and forecasting information. However, the team was spending an increasing amount of time supporting users outside of the Finance department with the creation of ad hoc reports, researching variances and developing financial report modifications in Oracle Smart View™. Knowing that Smart View is a user friendly tool, the Financial Systems team wanted to expand the usage of the tool beyond Finance.

With Smart View available with Oracle Hyperion Planning and Oracle Fusion Financials cubes, the Financial Systems team at the organization identified the potential to expand their Smart View user base outside of the Corporate FP&A department. A group of approximately 15 individuals were identified from the Section Accounting, AR, Treasury, and Tax departments that could achieve operational efficiencies by using Smart View. The organization wanted to provide detailed, hands-on Smart View training that was meaningful for these new users with the expectation that they could go back to their desk and immediately start getting benefit from Smart View reporting techniques. The organization turned to Key Performance Ideas, a leader in Hyperion and its related technologies and experienced trainer.

Solution

Key Performance Ideas devoted time to understanding the existing Oracle Fusion Financials cubes and interviewed current super users, stakeholders, and potential end users to better understand the organization’s “current state” and training goals. The Financial Systems team provided examples of reporting requests they wished to eliminate and Key Performance Ideas interviewed thought leading individuals from each of the departments that would receive the training to identify current processes and where efficiencies could be achieved. Special note was taken of those tasks that were performed regularly (e.g., daily or weekly) so that those items could be prioritized to help promote adoption and repetition, and therefore maximize efficiency. Where available, sample Excel documents, analysis, and reports were collected that illustrated the work involved or the resulting output of manual manipulation of data exports.

After getting an understanding of the organization’s environment, processes, and training expectations, a detailed training methodology and presentation was composed, using screenshots from the current environment. The content of the training was focused on core Smart View functionality, as well as some more advanced features that would specifically benefit all users. In addition, a series of hands-on exercises were created based off of examples provided during the interviews. These exercises were utilized throughout the hands-on training sessions and selected in a manner which were most meaningful to individuals in the attendance.

During the training sessions, support was provided by Key Performance Ideas as the attendees worked through the exercises. Some early exercises provided step by step instructions, while later exercises encouraged attendees to think through what was being requested and deriving an acceptable output. The training was finalized with a session which discussed other ways Smart View could be utilized to make their jobs easier or more efficient and a lengthy question and answer session done both as a group and with individuals.

Benefits Achieved

By partnering with Key Performance Ideas, the Financial Systems team of this organization was able to provide comprehensive, hands-on Smart View training for a new set of users and initiate discussion into ways to use the tool to achieve operational improvements. Since the training was customized to the organization’s processes, documentation will be reused to facilitate future training needs for the organization.

Now that users outside of Finance are trained on Smart View, the Financial Systems team is much more productive, focusing on higher value tasks like development and system support versus troubleshooting and supporting user’s ad hoc pulls of data and analysis.
At the end of the training, new users of Smart View stated they were:

  • More comfortable with the application and proficient using the tool without support from Finance
  • Excited to save significant time with their reconciliation process
  • Encouraged that Smart View reduced the need for time consuming data exports and manipulations
  • Eager to use the tool for additional uses they identified in their day-to-day responsibilities
 

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