New HP Solution to Help CIOs ‘Run IT Like a Business’

HP has unveiled HP Financial Planning and Analysis (FP&A), a new solution in its IT Financial Management (ITFM) portfolio intended to help CIOs run IT like a business, and demonstrate the business value of IT services. The solution aims to bring together software and services to provide improved visibility, governance, accountability and predictability to IT finance.

"We started working on this solution about three years ago. We saw an increasing need for better financial visibility and specifically cost visibility within the larger enterprises that we were working with," Ken Cheney, director of product marketing for IT Financial Management, tells 5 Minute Briefing. At that time, HP started working extensively with about 20 customers as design partners.

"Many of the challenges that these customers were facing were around the fact that they were dealing with manual error-prone processes across siloed IT organizations," Cheney says. "As a result, the information that was rolling up tended to be delayed, it tended to be inaccurate at times and it also took an incredible amount of effort." Currently, IT organizations are doing "a lot of heavy lifting with spreadsheets that could be as deep as 40 sheets or more to do the rollups and the allocations," Cheney adds.

There is also increasing pressure on CIOs to provide greater cost transparency, especially with current economy, Cheney adds. "I can't tell you how many customers I speak with who state that cost containment and cost rationalization is their number-one initiative and they are very challenged in terms of being able to communicate with the business in the language of the business when it comes to the finances, and specifically the costs."

HP FP&A software combines a financial planning and analysis capability linked to a financial data model. It consolidates financial information from project, asset and configuration management systems, as well as enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, providing visibility of the end-to-end costs of a business service, and enabling CIOs to then take action to reduce variances between planned and actual spending, optimize underutilized assets and accurately allocate IT costs to the consumers of IT services.

The software automates the process of consolidating financial information across labor and technology assets for improved financial analysis. HP FP&A can be run as a stand-alone application or in conjunction with other HP software products such as HP Project Portfolio Management Center, HP Asset Manager and HP Configuration Management System.

Additionally, HP announced a newly enhanced version of HP Project Portfolio Management (PPM) Center 8.0 software with improved financial and resource management capabilities. HP is also providing new services and best practices to help run IT like a business. For more details about all the new offerings, go here.