Host Analytics Winter '16:  Improving User Experience and Productivity

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In February Host Analytics delivered our first feature release of 2016 – our Winter '16 release!  Punxsutawney Phil didn’t see his shadow on Groundhog Day, so we can expect an early spring. 

But before we leave the cold behind us, let's look at some of the highlights of the Winter '16 release – a release packed with more than 40 new features and enhancements.

Improved User Experience

In this release, we’re introducing new Universal Hierarchy Management with initial support for budget hierarchies.  This comes with a new intuitive user interface (UI) and incredibly fast performance, and works with any supported browser.  Support for additional hierarchies will be delivered in upcoming releases this year.  This will provide a more consistent method of creating and maintaining hierarchies across the Host Analytics Cloud EPM Suite.

To provide enhanced automation of routine tasks, the Cloud Scheduler process has been enhanced to integrate with the Consolidation process as well as Financial Package Publisher.  This release now allows users to schedule both processes as a task in Cloud Scheduler, with more automation to come in future releases.

Productivity

One of goals with the Host Analytics Cloud EPM Suite is to provide support for ANY browser on ANY device, so users will have even more browser choices available.  With this release, we have further achieved this goal by introducing support for IE 11 64-bit, Firefox, and Safari (Mac OS X).  In addition, we've now added support for Office 2016 and Office 365 for both Windows and Mac OS.  With this release, we now have parity in browser support between MS Windows and Mac OS. 

Another user productivity feature of this release is that our EPM applications will now support ‘.xlsx’ as a file load type for Data Load Rules (DLR).  That means new DLRs can be configured to use .xlsx file types, which is the format currently supported by Microsoft.

Key Performance Enhancements

The Winter ’16 release also includes a number of performance improvements.  The biggest news is that an in-memory computing infrastructure has also been added to the architecture of the Host Analytics Cloud EPM Suite, extending our market-leading platform for enhanced scalability and performance.  The entire platform will be optimized further with each release to take advantage of this best-in-class technology to enable data-driven enterprises to perform even better.  In addition, our Dynamic Reports tool has a new state-of-the-art HTML 5 grid that delivers unrivaled performance.  

Host Analytics Modeling has been enhanced with some great new features. 

  • The Views function has been extended to include Excel Formula Values, enabling the results of an Excel formula to be saved. That means, when saving data to the Model in a View, the values resulting from an Excel formula are now saved, although the formula itself is not saved. 
  • Users can now exclude point of view (POV) dimensions in reports for any cell. When designing the report, users can override the POV dimension members by using the ‘Exclude POV’ option.
  • We have also made significant performance improvements in the multi-tab reporting functionality. When multiple reports are open in multiple sheets in the Excel workbook, navigation between sheets is now instantaneous.  

The Winter '16 Release of our Cloud EPM Suite continues to offer exciting new features for Host Analytics customers and extends our leadership in this market.  The best is yet to come....Spring is coming early this year, and development is well under way for what promises to be the most groundbreaking release yet. 

If you haven't already registered for Host Analytics World, this is THE Cloud EPM event of the year.  We'll be unveiling our Spring '16 release, which is something you won't want to miss!

If you’re an existing customer and want to find out more, you can view the full release notes in our online help and discuss these new enhancements via our Customer Community.  You can also view our February 24th Wednesday with the Experts session to get the full scoop.

Register for Host Analytics World

Posted by on March 1, 2016
Bryan Katis

Bryan Katis is SVP of Product Management at Host Analytics. His team defines our product roadmap, making sure that we address the evolving needs of our customers and partners. Bryan has been in the EPM space for more than 15 years and has led the development of multiple generations of EPM product suites. Prior to joining Host Analytics, Bryan served as Vice President of Customer Success at Anaplan, responsible for all Professional Services, Support, and Training. Earlier in his career, Bryan spent more than a decade at SAP, leading product innovation and delivering customer success across the EPM, Portals, Business Intelligence, and Netweaver product lines. Bryan graduated with a BBA in Finance from University of Georgia and is an active cyclist in the Menlo Bike Club in support of The Canary Foundation, dedicated to early cancer detection research.

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