Generally, you would not think to use IBM products when working with Oracle EPM solutions.  There is at least one combination that I would recommend exploring.  Below I will walk through the advantages of using the IBM Cognos Command Center to control the processes of your Oracle EPM environment.

IBM Cognos Command Center (Overview)

IBM Cognos Command Center (ICCC) offers an effective and flexible environment that will reduce the management and support of finance applications, while bringing greater reliability, visibility and timeliness to the finance systems environment.

Cognos Command Center reduces complex code and sequences tasks for multiple platforms and applications, regardless of where the application resides. A central automation repository provides security-rich application and data automation source control, lifecycle management (LCM) and an audit trail for exceptional automation compliance.

Key Benefits of ICCC

  • Workflow orchestration — sequence sophisticated task flows for multiple computing platforms and applications
  • Reduced custom coding — reduce the complexity of custom coding with predefined libraries of functions
  • Centralized control and compliance — increase control and visibility to see who ran what, where, when and how
  • Self-service automation — view and run processes on an ad hoc or scheduled basis, and diagnose exceptions

Customer Use Case

What is being loaded?

  • Flat files into FDM
    • In total 8 flat file per close (Expense, P&L – US and International X 2 divisions)
  • Relational Data into FDM
    • In total 4 SQL feeds into FDM (Expense, P&L – US and International)
  • Data to offset system discrepancies
    • Calculations that offset data (move data)

Conventional ways to automate the load process…

  • Lots of maxL and .bat files
    • Call Calc Scripts
    • Load Rules
  • Lots of VBScript (FDM)
    • VBScript to create calc scripts to clear data

IBM Cognos Command Center Solution

The screen shot below is a small view into the step by step logic that can be created using ICCC.

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By using ICCC the automation process was simplified because each step can be created specifically to match each required load process.  This includes custom essbase calc scripts to clear sections of data as well as a method to call post data load calculations.

ICCC also allows you to create all scripts using custom run time variables that can be dynamically changed during the ICCC process.  The screen shot below is a partial list of variables used in a data load and calculate process.

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Below is an example of a PowerShell script and how variables can be passed to a from a script.

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In the example below variables are passed from ICCC to an Essbase calculation.

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In the example below variables are passed from ICCC to FDM for loading.

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With the ability to pass variables to FDM and EPM and to view your data load process in a concise manner ICCC is a great tool for complex data load across multiple systems.  Keep in mind ICCC is not designed to just load FDM and EPM.  ICCC can be used to move data between SQL tables, Flat Files and any other supported ICCC systems.  At eCapitalAdvisors we not only support Oracle EPM and its related tools we are also happy to leverage existing tools to get the job done.

If you have any other questions about IBM Cognos Command Center, FDM (FDMEE), ODI or EPM feel free to contact us.

Dan Bjurstrom,

David Grande,

Jon Harvey,

Jon Harvey

Jon has been a part of the Oracle team at eCapital Advisors since 2009 and is passionate about educating and teaching clients and team members how to apply the technology to drive business value within organizations. An Oracle Certified Expert in both Hyperion Planning and Essbase, Jon oversees the technical aspects of EPM project delivery and managed services. In addition, he’s responsible for ensuring the continued growth of the practice’s technical capabilities and serves as the primary interface between eCapital and the Oracle user community.

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