Modernizing and Transforming Financial Operations for a Leading Government Contractor
The Story Behind the Success: Harmonizing a Business Data Warehouse, Oracle Planning & Power BI
- Industry: Government Contracting
- Citizen Services
- Location(s): North America | Headquartered in the United States
Financial Transformation & Enterprise Reporting in Less Than 1 Year
For government contractors running their business on Costpoint, unlocking the full potential of data is the key for Finance teams to achieve nimble reporting, and achieve success modernizing financial planning, forecasting, and dynamic indirect rate modeling capabilities. Through the implementation of a Business Warehouse, Oracle Planning and Power BI, this government contractor gained the ability to generate dynamic forecasts, reduced manual efforts to integrate data across people/platforms, and standardized their planning processes to make better, more informed decisions. The comprehensive solution also provided a one-stop platform for Finance, Operations and Program Managers to have everything from aggregated Project Summary Reports (PSR) to Weekly Labor Timesheets at their fingertips for analysis.
Integrating Oracle EPM Cloud & Costpoint
To enable a modernized financial planning, forecasting, and indirect rate modeling application to replace their legacy platform. The cloud application needed to be flexible and highly integrated with Costpoint and their opportunity tracking system for nimble forecasting processes.
Establish a Business Data Warehouse
To avoid one-off integration methods, ensure data integrity, and to enable data modeling capabilities that could handle “Big Data” from Costpoint. The Business Data Warehouse is the behind-the-scenes hub for both financial and transactional data required to manage programs, vendors, customers and labor.
On-Demand Power BI Portal
To create a one-stop portal for Program Managers, Business Finance, and Executive leaders comprehensive program reporting and analytics across their eight business units.
Key Takeaways From the Transformation
This financial transformation initiative provided our government contracting client solutions that empowered timely and accurate program reporting and analytics. Here are a few of the key takeaways that our client received from embarking on this project:
- Created Data Warehouse as the central location for Program and Finance data management to simplify integration of key data sets across platforms.
- Reduced the reliance on legacy tools and shifted Program and Business Review reporting to a centralized reporting portal.
- Created the portal with the ability to view aggregated company financials across business units with the ability to access previse transaction details for robust analytics.
- Reduced the learning curve for newly onboarded Program Managers and Finance Analysts.
Pillars of the Enterprise-Wide Financial Transformation
Breaking Down the Key Reports Built with Power BI
Below are four of 40+ dashboards that our team used to help our government contracting client reach their financial transformation. The first two dashboards were sourced from Oracle Planning Cloud, and the Project Summary Report and Revenue Summary were sourced directly from Costpoint and are updated daily in the BI Portal. This type of visually enhanced reporting empowered our client through timely and accurate forecasting and analytics.
Who Uses These Reports?
Business Group Leads
Drive Organizational Transformation
Remain agile and ahead of the curve to stay competitive and guarantee compliance within an ever-changing regulatory environment.
The Power of Oracle Planning to Lead the Financial Transformation
The first phase of this project was focused on helping our client build a planning model that gave them bigger insight into what drives actual to forecast to plan variances across their business units. Our team used multiple planning models to enhance the data that our client was using. This empowered our client to have the ability to plan and forecast at varying levels of the project strings from Costpoint to accommodate different reporting requirements for different types of contracts. This included seamless integrations with Costpoint and a lights-out automation process.
They were also able to obtain flexible labor planning with varying levels of detail (by employee, by FTE and by total labor input) to accommodate flexibility for different types of contracts. Our client enhanced their revenue calculations by contract type based on Costpoint calculations, were able to capture and report on labor and ODCs by burden type to calculate a fully burdened P&L and utilize indirect planning by organization/indirect project to facilitate pool cost calculations.
Through the enhancement of their forecasting processes, they’re now able to plan for opportunities and review variances across factored and unfactored views driven by p-win and p-go inputs. They were also able to proficiently navigate project attribute reporting for Contract Type, Major Project Grouping, Contract Status, and were able to utilize more advanced Balance Sheet and Cash Flow forecasting, planning, and analysis.
- Automation of forward pricing rate schedules and reporting packages
- Indirect rate cost impact and profitability analysis
- Ability to review cost and base variances at the cost account mix (DL vs. M&H vs. ODCs) and project level of detail for rate trend analysis purposes
- What-if analysis to account for pool consolidation and base changes (TCI vs. Value-Add)
- Integrated all processes and systems with Power BI for a seamless reporting platform for the organization
Building a Business Data Warehouse
Our team helped our government contracting client turn their existing legacy platform into a true Data Warehouse to support their business applications and enterprise program reporting requirements. Through this phase of the financial transformation, we created automated direct integrations from Costpoint to their new Oracle Planning Cloud application to:
- Give users up-to-date revenue, labor, other direct costs, burden, and indirect expense detail
- Enable automated updates for project/contract details such as funding, POP
- Automate updates of project work breakdown structures, account, organization, and employee roster details
We also worked to design a high-performing data pipeline to stage millions of rows from Costpoint source tables into the Warehouse and transform into business reporting models for Power BI. The Warehouse included details at the most granular levels for projects, employees, labor timesheets (cost and hours), billings, collections, vendors, customers, and labor categories.
- Enable a central hub for both financial and operational data to remove one-off integrations from Costpoint.
- Create a sophisticated data layer to perform aggregations and summarizations of Costpoint transactional tables to the level required by Finance and the new Oracle Planning application.
- Provide a scalable platform to ingest, transform and report on details sourced from the largest tables under the hood of Costpoint.
Implementing an On-Demand Enterprise Reporting Portal with Power BI
Our team partnered with our client to build out a Program Manager Insights Portal, to serve as a one-stop-shop for operational project/program analysis, along with Business Group and Executive level reviews.
Prior to working with us, our client created the first wave of the portal and our team partnered to enhance the portal with robust reporting capabilities to truly be an aide to their Program Managers. In doing so, they were able to replace their old reporting and modernize program management and review experience for their customers.
- Created an intuitive experience with dynamic/visual dashboards to streamline Program and Business Review reporting in one portal.
- Power BI dashboards and reports provide the ability to view aggregated company financials across business units with the ability to access transaction details for robust analytics.
- Reduced the learning curve for newly onboarded Program Managers and Finance Analysts.
Oracle Planning & Power BI: The Perfect Marriage to Achieve Enhanced Dashboards and Detailed Reporting
We integrated the new Oracle Planning Cloud application to create Program Review dashboards that encompass the following:
- Revenue, direct cost, burden, and trading profit analysis
- Trend Analysis: YoY, MoM, Year to Date, Inception to Date
- Act to plan to forecast comparisons
- Existing versus new business
- Contract type and performance metrics
Our team integrated Costpoint transaction-level details to allow program managers to view both aggregate and base-level details for their projects. Some of the types of reports created were:
- Project summaries at program and task level
- Project revenue detail
- Project general ledger transaction details
- Labor and timesheet detail
The new dashboards provide easy access for business stakeholders to view top-line program revenue, cost, and profit metrics, while at the same time drilling down to details such as the number of hours an employee charged to a project on their weekly timesheet. Other notable enhancements include:
- Allows program managers to view open commitments
- Vendor spend analysis
- Better tracks program funding, backlog, and open PO balances
- Rolls employee hours up by project, org, pay type, account type (direct versus leave)