Charting the course: Transforming FP&A for enhanced transparency

Discover how Ciena, a leading software company, leveraged Anaplan to transform its FP&A processes. Ciena’s Scott Soukup shares his journey and discusses the benefits of adopting Anaplan for accurate reporting, improved forecasting, and driving better business decisions.

Don Eigenbauer 0:00:05.2:

My name is Don Eigenbauer. I’m an enterprise account executive on Anaplan’s tech hardware team, which falls underneath our manufacturing vertical, and I’m really excited to have the opportunity today to help facilitate a conversation with Ciena, a strategic and tenured manufacturing customer. Welcome to the main stage, Scott.


Scott Soukup 0:00:26:5:

Thank you. Thank you.


Don Eigenbauer 0:00:27:7:

Could you please take a minute to introduce yourself, talk a little bit about your FP&A leadership role at Ciena?


Scott Soukup 0:00:34:2:

Sure. Thanks. Well, first, thanks for having me here, and thanks for everyone for attending. It’s always a great gift when I get to come to New York City for this type of event, so I’m really happy to be here. Again, my name is Scott Soukup. I am, as you can see there, a director in the FP&A org at Ciena and I lead the… A couple of things I do. My most important role is to lead the Anaplan team, the center of excellence. That’s where all the model builders, solution architects, as well as the support, report in to me. I also have the pleasure of leading a data assurance team and a pricing assurance team at Ciena.


Don Eigenbauer 0:01:09:6:

Scott, by my count, this is your third Connect event in the last 12 months. You also spoke at Anaplan Live in 2022, and we certainly appreciate your support over the years and taking the time to share Ciena’s journey. So, let’s get into it, Scott. I have eight questions prepared and yes/no responses are not recommended. Our audience might know AWS, Meta, Verizon, no offence, slightly more than they do Ciena. I happen to know that these companies and major cloud service providers and telcos are some of your biggest customers and that your technology helps power the internet and it helps power the cellular network. Through the lens of like the AWSs of the world, maybe you could just talk a little bit further about what exactly it is that Ciena does.


Scott Soukup 0:02:02:5:

Sure. Sure. How many people here know who Ciena is? Just raise your hand. Okay, a few. Okay, very good. Anyway, yes, so every time you pick up a cell phone and you get online, that data is going from your device, whatever device that is, going either to a tower or it goes out of your home. It goes across a… Essentially, it’s going to go to fiber optics at some point. What Ciena does is Ciena’s really the enabler of all the bandwidth that we consume. We make the bits go fast. We make sure they run – they’re very – that we keep track of them, and we make sure we encrypt them. So, that’s what we do across the network. In the United States and North America, we are the number one player in the optical space. Globally, around the world, we’re either two or three depending upon what region we’re talking about. Basically, our job is to… Wherever there’s bandwidth, and especially with AI coming on, we’re going to see a lot more growth in that area because our job is to move bits as fast as possible and as much – as many of them as possible.


Don Eigenbauer 0:03:09:0:

Thank you, Scott. So, about four years ago, give or take, you started your Anaplan journey in finance with an initial model called order, revenue, margin.


Scott Soukup 0:03:18:2:



Don Eigenbauer 0:03:18:3:

What was the rationale for starting in finance, and could you describe the flagship model to the audience?


Scott Soukup 0:03:24:8:


Sure, yes. The reason why we started where we did is… Back in 2019, we were confronted with a big gap in our solution architecture. You have Salesforce on the CRM side, you have Oracle doing the ERP thing, and then you had some other technology in terms of how we do bids, how we manage contracts, and things like that, as well as how we recognize revenue. All that was very well – not – it was connected, right? Between the two, in terms of a planning-type platform, we had just a ton of Excel spreadsheets, like I think most people find themselves. So, our objective was how do we start removing those spreadsheets and get to where we can connect the planning aspects of the company with the execution aspects of the company, so our first model there – and we went after the toughest one first. It was orders, revenue and margin, or revenue assurance, and the rationale was that if we could do that, then we could do other things.


Scott Soukup 0:04:27:1:

That model has been, I think, three/three and a half years of build, but now it’s just nice to see it’s finally – all of the building blocks are there in the engine and it is… Just a couple of specs on this thing. When we started this whole journey, we looked at all the spreadsheets and all the work that the FP&A team was doing, and we actually did a video study of watching people go through their weekly process. We saw 30,000 iterations of Excel spreadsheet activity, so 30,000 clicks. Within about a year, those clicks were gone, and now we’re at the point in that one product where FP&A is now spending 80 per cent of their time doing analysis on the information rather than trying to build it and trying to trust it. So, that’s why we started there, and that’s really been the impetus for us to have the confidence to go up to other models.


Don Eigenbauer 0:05:25:0:

Thank you. When I started working with Ciena about a year and a half or so ago, you made a comment that left an impression upon me. You talked about Anaplan literally helping Ciena report timely and accurate revenue and profit margin data to Wall Street and your investor community. So, that’s, I think, outsized business outcome, but could you just talk more specifically around how Anaplan helps you do that?


Scott Soukup 0:05:53:9:


Where we are now in our journey is we have all the expense-related models done, we have the revenue assurance done, and those come together and allow us to see a combined financial picture so we know what our costs are going to be, expense is going to be, as well as the revenue and margin. The revenue and margin are the two things that we report heavily on to the market, and really, it’s – as you follow us through a year in terms of how we do things. We start with a plan. The first output that Anaplan helps us produce every year is the financial plan, and then we go into a light-touch forecast, we go into our outlooks. Anaplan is there as the engine that puts all that together for us so that the leadership of the company, led by our FP&A vice president, can analyze the information and start having those better conversations with the business leaders at Ciena.


Don Eigenbauer 0:06:55:7:

As we’ve discussed already, you started your journey in finance with a multitude of different FP&A use cases now deployed. Then you expanded into HR and adjacent workforce planning use cases. How did that come about and what benefits have you seen by connecting finance with HR?


Scott Soukup 0:07:16:8:

Yes, so we’re heavily driven by our people. We have a very people-heavy culture at Ciena, and also, too, that’s a lot of investment there in the talent that we have, and outside of R&D, it’s probably our largest driver of what our expenses are going to look like. To really have a budgeting platform or an expense reporting model without having a workforce plan input seemed self-defeating, so that was the first thing we did. I think the actual model builder, who is in the room right now, who helped us with that… Is he here? Is he in here? Pat Desmond. Yes, yes, so Pat Desmond’s in here, and he was the one who came on and helped us in that journey first. The reason why we did that is because we needed to get the expense-related headcount into our cost center expense planning, and that’s been very beneficial too.


Don Eigenbauer 0:08:12:3:

I know last year you conducted some optimization work on your longest-tenured FP&A model, the one we’ve been discussing: order, revenues, margin. How did you balance focusing on that necessary optimization work with an existing model when teams are coming at you all the time, chomping at the bit for deploying new models and adding additional functionality?


Scott Soukup 0:08:36:3:

Yes, so there, I think it’s the benefit of… I’ve been at Ciena for 24 years. I’ve done various different things across the company. One of those, I had a ten-year stint in IT leading an application team, so I understood from that journey how important it was to keep technical debt to a minimum. As we got into these models, especially this one model, the flagship model, the Orders, Revenue, Margin model… When we started this, we really didn’t understand exactly where we were going, but we knew we had to get started, and so part of that journey was accumulating a lot of technical debt. At some point, we had the model up and running. We met corporate objectives on being able to deliver the output from that model, but it was also we were seeing, based on the size, based upon the performance, that we really need to go and do some optimization.


Scott Soukup 0:09:26:0:

We actually engaged with Anaplan Professional Services to come in and help us look at this, so – and to help guide us and give us some recommendations of what to do. In terms of actually making the call, it was just a lot of conversations with the users. As users got more involved in the model and they saw the model producing results, their appetite kept growing. It was very easy for me to just remind them that, at some point, we’re going to have to optimize to allow them to get to where they really wanted to go. It was that conversation. It was a balancing of the things we had to do in the tool versus optimization. It was really lining up the optimization work versus the backlog of user requests and making sure we were having just very transparent conversations with the product owners and making sure we were making the right calls.


[Aside 0:10:17:7]


Don Eigenbauer 0:10:22:9:

We heard Accenture talk this morning about organizations needing to be patient with data, not being afraid to get started. You’re a self-confessed data junkie in addition to your FP&A day job. What advice would you have for companies who are hesitant to adopt enterprise planning because they believe their data’s not clean enough?


Scott Soukup 0:10:47:7:

This is a face that’s been dealing with data. I’m on my third decade of dealing with data at the company in one way, shape, or form. I would say that you have to understand that data’s not going to be perfect. Right? Ciena’s been around for 25-plus years, probably heavily on the latest ERP systems we have with Oracle and everything, but we’ve spent decades, like most companies have, doing point solutions with the technology. Any time you do it, it’s not connected, it may not be well architected, or the way a lot of these products are rolled out is that they – you resist the desire to customize it. Over time, what happens with a lot of data is that there’s a gap between the process you’re actually running as a business and how the application layer fits over it. What we saw at Ciena was that, over time, we started seeing the spreadsheets start growing because people started using spreadsheets to help actually transact and manage and see the business.


Scott Soukup 0:11:54:1:

We went into this big program a couple of years ago that was focused of understanding our data deficiencies. We started with like 50 data deficiencies, and we got down to about ten of the big ones, the tough ones, but we made the decision to go ahead and move into Anaplan in spite of those data deficiencies. There were some folks that said, ‘We can’t start with that until the data issues are resolved.’ We also realized, too, that as we moved through the process, we would uncover other data deficiencies which may make the ones that we had, the ten remaining ones, seem like they weren’t so big. We started moving through there, and like this one big model that consumes 80 per cent of all of our business application data, those ten are still there, and there’s probably only one that we would go chase right now. We found that a lot of the things we thought were going to stop us didn’t stop us, and also that – and anything that we needed to resolve, if it really became a blocker and something where Anaplan couldn’t handle it with some basic logic, we went after it.


Scott Soukup 0:12:58:6:


We actually had the momentum from the business to actually go solve it. I would say, basically, that issue’s going to be there. They’re going to keep growing over time. It’s just Anaplan provided us the forcing function to become very realistic about what we needed to fix and what we didn’t have to worry about. I would say you move through it. Keep your eyes open on the data. Also, too, that’s part of why I have a data team under me that does governance because as you start putting all this data into your Anaplan models, you have to be looking at the data. You have to make sure it’s not drifting on you. We’re connecting like multiple-source systems. We have like 40 feeds coming in every week and we’ve just built a fairly robust quality assurance program on top of it. We watch it. We know it’s out there. We’re really excited about the potential for DMS to help us in the future here, but ultimately, I wouldn’t be too afraid of the data, otherwise, you’ll be paralyzed.


Don Eigenbauer 0:14:02:4:

Well said. Sticking with our data theme, you recently decided to bring Ciena’s data science team, or one of your lead data scientists, into conversations within Anaplan as the company looks to embrace AI and ML to improve predictions/increase forecasting accuracy. I found it really interesting that the data scientist shares the same boss as you do, the VP of FP&A, and this lead data scientist lives in Ciena’s corporate finance group. What was the catalyst here for bringing in your data scientist lead? Maybe you could just talk a little bit about the connection between Ciena’s finance and how you collaborate with your in-house data scientist.


Scott Soukup 0:14:48:2:

Data science has been in the back of our minds for… When we started the journey, we started the journey knowing that the reason why we wanted to really deploy Anaplan and close the gap that all these various spreadsheets was causing was because we really wanted to enter a world where we were, and you heard it this morning, having conversations about our data. Dashboards are great, but at some point, we always knew we wanted to just get the answer we needed and go on about our lives and take action on things. When we started this Anaplan journey, we had – there were the three pillars. We were going to lead with Anaplan. As we moved through it, we were going to build out our reporting and analytics capability. All this data that was trapped in spreadsheets across the different regions was now available to us in a model that could be exported to our data warehouse and displayed with Power BI or whatever tool the users wanted to use. Power BI is the one we use primarily for this.


Scott Soukup 0:15:53:8:

Then, as we got further along and we started really completing the engines for the modelling engines, now it became a good time to start looking forward a little bit in terms of what would an AI experience be on top of it. Right now, we’re using our data science expertise, and we have an expert data scientist working within my – the FP&A team. We’re starting to evaluate what are the use cases we want to go chase. The timing is good because there’s a lot to AI. There’s a lot of things I think that Anaplan can help there in terms of having the data that’s actionable coming out. It’s also something where I think AI is… A company can probably spend a lot of time and a lot of money and get nothing out of it, too. We really feel like, right now, we’re at the point in our journey that we can be asking the right questions and be evaluating the Anaplan products to see if they can deliver the right answers.


Don Eigenbauer 0:16:56:4:

Are there any preliminary ideas or like a hypothesis around what like third-party data/external data you would want to marry with the data that you already have organically to improve forecasting accuracy?


Scott Soukup 0:17:12:8:


Yes, there are a couple. There’s obviously external market data. This starts moving into the IBP world a little bit, but as we start really building out some of our additional models, it’s an opportunity to really look at extending our forecast horizon from current year plus one to going out to three to five years. We definitely know that we don’t have the data for three to five years, so there’s going to be a recipe of mixing certain things, certain data sets that are going to allow us to get there. So, definitely, external data would be really useful. Also, to understand the data we have in terms of what we’ve forecasted in the past versus what we actually did. That stuff would be useful too. I think really a lot of it is going to be around… We think there’s enough richness in the data we’ve put together with Anaplan that it can help us with some things like… We do hardware, we do services and software, and a lot of times, our services revenue drives around how we deliver our product. Attached service rates is a good example of something that – probably that’s a use case there. We have about three or four use cases that we think might bear fruit, and we’re in a process of validating some of those right now.


Don Eigenbauer 0:18:31:4:

I heard you mention IBP. Prior to me joining Anaplan three years ago, I had never heard of IBP. Integrated Business Planning for those who might not know. We heard a lot today about the agile-connected enterprise and the importance of decision excellence and how it drives total shareholder return. Just on that IBP theme, I know about six months ago, give or take, Ciena, which is a 100-plus-year -old business, right?


Scott Soukup 0:19:02:4:

Oh no, no, we’re…


Don Eigenbauer 0:19:03:2:



Scott Soukup 0:19:03:5:

Probably 30.


Don Eigenbauer 0:19:04:4:

Thirty. Okay, I’m off there. My apologies.


Scott Soukup 0:19:05:9:

They can see who we are here.


Don Eigenbauer 0:19:07:2:

A thirty-year-old business, but you’re not a start-up. A mature business.


Scott Soukup 0:19:10:7:



Don Eigenbauer 0:19:11:3:


You established an IBP council for the first time in the company’s history, which your leader, the VP in FP&A, is on.


Scott Soukup 0:19:16:1:



Don Eigenbauer 0:19:19:4:

Could you just talk a little bit about what was the impetus to create an IBP council, and if they have a charter or they have a mission, what are they looking to achieve?


Scott Soukup 0:19:31:9:


Okay, that’s a good one. I think in the past, we had had traditional S&OP sales and operational planning, and that’s where sales and supply chain would come together. They would talk about, ‘This is what we want to ship. What can you ship? This is what we can ship. Can we expedite it?’ They’re making all those decisions surrounding the sales and operational planning model. One of the things that Anaplan has done, because we have all of our… Like, now, on a weekly basis, we know what our fiscal year and this year and next year are looking like from a revenue and a margin plan. We’ve also realized, too, that, really, the – trying to hit those revenue targets, like we talked about, with going to market with, ‘Hey, this is…’ We tell the market, ‘Hey, this is what we think we’re going to do this quarter or this year.’ Sometimes we try to give a three-year guidance. All that now is available to us on a weekly or monthly basis, and so it really changes the dynamics of the conversation between a sales and a supply chain. It puts finance in the middle of that conversation saying, ‘Okay, here’s the revenue signal. Here’s our revenue plan. Can we match a demand plan to it?’ and allows us to start looking…


Scott Soukup 0:20:49:9:

As opposed to looking at within current quarter, which is how we’re going to place and chase and expedite to make the quarters, it also allows us to start looking at current quarter plus one [?on out 0:21:02:2] with the demand plan. The idea here is that now that we have the technology, we have the data information in front of us, it makes sense that now we have… Rather than just sales and supply chain, we have a conversation led by finance, because, at the end of the day, we want to hit our financial objectives and sales and supply chain are the two enablers for us to do that. It really puts that package together nicely as a committee. We’re just in the very start of this where we have now what’s called an IBP committee, and then what we really want them to do is really help us inform how the technology needs to evolve. The idea that we have supply chain planning, we have sales planning, we have FP&A planning, it’s going to help determine the direction of the technical stack, so to speak. Instead of going after and optimizing 100 per cent in this one little area, now we can look across the enterprise, optimize across that, which is going to allow us to get to better use of scenario planning. It’s going to allow us to drive the advanced analytics as well as the AI thing.


Don Eigenbauer 0:22:13:2:

I heard you mentioned finance, supply chain, sales ops. As the IBP committee matures, would you expect that any other like functional areas of Ciena would get involved with that IBP committee?


Scott Soukup 0:22:27:0:

Yes, absolutely. This month, we released a strat plan model, which is our strategic plan, which is again the three-to-five-year view of things, so it makes sense that the product line group that actually manages the strat plan along with corporate strategy. I see them coming into it too, and now we have a much better conversation. It’s really looking at similar data through just slightly different lenses, so I definitely expect that committee to grow.


Don Eigenbauer 0:22:59:9:

We’ve covered a lot of good ground, Scott. I’d like to just maybe pivot to what’s on your short-term horizon. Say, in the next six 6-to-12-month window, what would you like to accomplish?


Scott Soukup 0:23:13:4:

Well, we’re moving into the accounting space now. Right now, we have eight models that are live in production, or use cases I’d say is probably a better way of looking at it. We’re turning on strat plan this month, that gives us nine, and then we’re looking at two additional models within the accounting space to solve some long-term pain points. We’re hoping to complete those this year and then really start moving into what we would consider consolidated financials. We really want to put together the overarching consolidated area that’s going to allow us to start driving the scenario planning, the ‘what ifs?’ Our goal is really, this time next year – we’re now thinking about how do we ask those types of ‘what if?’ questions and how do we exercise all the way from a change in sales in a certain geography to what does that mean for the workforce? What does it mean for balance sheet/cash flow/earnings per share? We’re trying to put together that final – so we’ll start designing that probably later this year.


Don Eigenbauer 0:24:19:1:

You were saying to me the other day – my recollection is that under the controller function, there’s a lot of planning that happens, but it’s presently largely spreadsheet-driven planning.


Scott Soukup 0:24:29:8:

Yes. Yes, so, right now in the – we call it the accounting group, but the controller function. Basically, the actual… We have an accounting team that actually delivers what we did a certain quarter, and they own the actuals, and then the FP&A owns the forecast, and also, too, putting together the actuals into the forecast into a management view that Ciena uses. Again, those two accounting models I talked about, they’re really trying to again address some spreadsheet-driven activities. There’s also… Well, those two models are adjacencies in terms of how we want to connect, so it’s going to help kill some spreadsheets as well as get the data into Anaplan faster so that… Probably, I think on one of them we’ll take two to three days out of the closed cycle in terms of allowing us to start our forecasting for the next quarter, so there’s definitely some business value we’re looking to drive there. Yes, but definitely spreadsheets are the thing. Every time we see a spreadsheet, we know it slows things down, it gums up the works, so whenever we see those adjacencies with spreadsheets, we like to go jump on that.


Don Eigenbauer 0:25:44:9:


What about beyond the next 6-to-12-month time horizon? Your longer-term vision and just maybe like a follow-up. Could you see a company like Ciena, knowing your culture and how executives work, adopting like the natural language query, the Siri-like experience, in the FP&A world?


Scott Soukup 0:26:06:7:

No, I’ve said this. I’ve said this within Ciena as far as outside, too, that I think that the roadmap that we’re seeing is violently aligned to where we want to go. We definitely want to spend a lot less time in the models and more time analyzing what’s in the models without having to leave the application, so I think there’s a lot of value there for the… If you think about it this way. I’ll give you an example. Even with the orders, revenue, margin model and the fact that the FP&A teams are now spending 80 per cent of their time analyzing, it would be so much faster if they would just do it right in the model. As they’re doing things, they can see what they have to go look at, investigate, have those conversations, and that would even shorten the cycle more. We are having to get the data out of the model to do some of that analysis, so if we could keep it in the model, it would definitely be – allow for a much quicker return on the FP&A’s time. Right?


Don Eigenbauer 0:27:08:0:

Well, thank you for your perspective and your insights so far. We definitely have a few minutes for questions, and I know we have a few because I planted several. I think Chris is going to come around with the microphone. If there’s a brave soul who might want to pose a question to Scott, this is your chance. Thank you.


Audience 0:27:30:0:

Scott, thanks so much for walking us through Ciena’s journey with Anaplan. I’m curious around your role, actively leading the CoE for Anaplan at Ciena. What are some of your best practices or strategies around building the talent for model builders and solution architects, retaining that talent, retraining the FP&A organization, and then just taking all the next steps with the new use cases and functions you want to implement?


Scott Soukup 0:27:52:7:

Oh, good question. Oh, wow, that’s a good one. We’re fortunate in any time that we need a model builder – we call it ‘unicorn hunting.’ If we need to go and get extra resources, that’s what we call it. It’s hard to get a really good, talented model builder who has enough experience to know not just to develop the point solution but also think about how we operationalize and support it. Right now, we’ve found our enterprise guy. We’ve got two other really good, talented solution architects. One we’ve brought in recently, but the other one, we’ve – he’s kind of grown within Ciena just because he has that curiosity, he has the technical understanding, and the business has adapted well to him, so it’s really about… There’re a couple of different theories on it. One I hear is that people say, ‘Well, take someone who understands the business and teach them how to model build.’ We haven’t found that to be successful because most people that are really good at the business, they want to grow and they don’t want to spend five years to become a really good Anaplan model builder.


Scott Soukup 0:29:04:1:

We try to find someone that is either early in career and try to teach them the right things to begin with and let them grow, knowing that they might outgrow a role at Ciena, which is fine, we would – but it’s about developing people at that point. What we’re levelling out on is that it’s better to find some people who have the curiosity, who have the technical capability, and just really bring them along, make sure they get to level one/level two; work them to level three. We have a lot of standardization in terms of what we’re looking at. One of the benefits of working with… When we started out, we were working with a company called [?Cervélo 0:29:49:9] and they gave us a nice little roadmap on how they develop their talents, so we’ve adopted most of that, and that’s what we’re doing. We also try to make sure the model builders we do have, that we keep them interested. We give them different things to do. Sometimes if there’s nothing really interesting on a customer-facing model, we’ll bring them into an internal model to work on. It’s really about, we think, just finding the right early-in-career talent and growing them internally is what I think we’ve figured out. Does that answer the question?


Unknown Speaker 0:30:21:8:

We’ve got one back here.


Audience 0:30:24:1:


Hello. Just, yes, a classic question. What would you have done differently if it was day one?


Scott Soukup 0:30:29:3:

Day one? Oh, we got so many learnings out of just doing what we did. Right? I often ask myself that question and I think that, yes, if I could have started over, I would have spent more time… Well, never underestimate the change management. That’s the first one I would say. Change management is a big deal. Especially if you’re dealing… With Ciena, we had folks who’d been doing – they spent years and years and years building their – taking the data from different systems and building information they could work on, so there’s a lot of trust in that output because they built it. I think I would spend a lot more time on the change management, less time worrying about the data, and making sure, too, that we really force people into a real, ‘This is the current state versus future state.’


Scott Soukup 0:31:27:3:


I think we did the future state sort of formulaically as opposed to saying, ‘What do you really want to be able to do?’ and then trying to make sure that not only the people in the tool had that understanding, but that they were – that they had been socialized with their leadership. I will tell you, though, the route we did go, there’s a lot of learnings that we got, a lot of things that we know not to do now, and it’s really… I’ll tell you. The difference is that when we when we delivered – when we… I’ve seen the strat plan model. I had a demo of that about two weeks ago and it looks completely different. In fact, the product owner can do the demo, it’s a two-and-a-half-month build, and some of our older models, the model builders are just starting to be able to demo it. Anyway, yes, so I definitely think the change management, getting the – making sure the product owner knows what they – where they want to go is going to be very important. I would focus less on the data deficiencies and more time on the change management. Does that help?


Don Eigenbauer 0:32:38:3:


Maybe one last question in the back here. The lights are bright.


Scott Soukup 0:32:47:0:


Yes, the lights are bright all right.


Audience 0:32:49:3:


Hey, Scott. What’s your advice for Anaplan CoE leads and what are some of the strategies that you have implemented in your organization that have enabled you to become a great Anaplan CoE lead?


Don Eigenbauer 0:33:03:5:

So, strategies around the CoE; how we approach it?


Audience 0:33:06:4:



Scott Soukup 0:33:07:6:


Okay, so I think the thing that we’ve come to understand is important is that it’s important for our solution architects to be opinionated about the design. In other words, we do sometimes go outside for additional help. Like we’ll have model builders brought in from another solution provider, offshore model building and stuff like that, so we’ll do things that are within our budgetary envelope. I think what’s been really important is that we’ve taken the time to make sure that the solution architects who have to own the model long-term are really coming up with the design of it. We have the enterprise solution architect who’s making sure that everything’s going to connect. At that point, once we’ve got the larger connection, we understand we have the scalable architecture, then, in our view, whether one of our model builders builds it or we have someone from a partner do it, it doesn’t matter to us. We’re going to be reducing the technical debt. It’s really about understanding where we’re investing our time. What’s become very apparent to us is that investing in time at the solution architecture level is vital, and as long as we get that right, everything else will flow.


Don Eigenbauer 0:34:33:2:

Well, thank you, Scott, and you’ll be here at the reception later today, right, if anybody else has a follow-up question?


Scott Soukup 0:34:38:3:



Don Eigenbauer 0:34:38:7:

Okay. Well, I appreciate your time in sharing the Ciena journey with us and look forward to welcoming you back next year.


Scott Soukup 0:34:45:0:

Okay. Well, thanks so much, Don.


Scott Soukup, Director, FP&A Architecture and Assurance, Ciena

Don Eigenbauer, Enterprise Account Executive, Anaplan