Too often, organisations make critical strategic decisions based on gut feelings and a limited understanding of potential outcomes, says George Frangou, chief executive of enterprise performance management (EPM) tools vendor E-Matrix Global (EMG). In short, he says, “they simply hope for the best”.
The goal of EMG’s ProNus EMP suite is to replace that hope with vision, enabling an organisation to actively steer its business where it wants it to go, based on hard data drawn in real time from disparate business systems, analysed, and presented ‘in context’ to users via a portal and by email alerts. From that basis, ProNus uses predictive modelling techniques to simulate the potential outcome of strategic decisions.
The concept of measuring business performance is not new, but has traditionally focused on measuring past performance. Growing demand for tools that use real-time data to optimise response times to events as they occur is driving demand for more sophisticated EPM tools, according to analysts at market research company AMR Research.
It is an area that leading business intelligence suppliers such as Business Objects, Cognos and Hyperion are actively targeting. However, Frangou claims that EMG can offer a broader and more integrated approach to EPM than standalone analytic applications from these vendors. Companies such as pharmaceuticals giants Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline, as well as utility company Powergen, he points out, have made significant investments in business intelligence tools from such companies, but have also recently turned to EMG.
EMG’s main challenge now is getting the investment required to execute on its strategic vision – the key aim of a first round of venture capital funding due to close in September 2002.
Nevertheless, the opportunity is there. “While EPM is currently in the early stages of adoption, [we conclude] that it now has the requisite corporate attention and budget to flourish over the next two to three years,” say analysts at AMR Research. It is now up to EMG to grab a slice of that attention and budget.