Anaplan Partner Akili uses the power of Anaplan to streamline and enable global collaboration for its customers

Sean Granfield, a member of Akili’s cloud practice, talks about how Anaplan’s modeling capabilities empowers Akili’s customers to improve their planning and forecasting processes.

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Sean Granfield: What Anaplan is doing differently is taking that platform play. It’s not a point solution—we’re not going in there and trying to just take spreadsheets and put them in the cloud. We try to do a lot more. It’s a platform that you can really take across the enterprise from a planning perspective, allow some great visibility into the business’s strategic decisions through the tool. And we can really leverage it and impact the business across the enterprise from the integrated planning perspective.

So with Anaplan, it’s incredibly powerful. It could be FP&A, it could be sales and operations planning, it can be supply chain planning—that can all be integrated and that’s a very unique capability. It’s really almost like an ERP from the perspective, but you’re doing it within this tool, which really allows us to leverage that data and make really powerful strategic decisions.

We were looking in the market for a cloud tool. A lot of our clients had come to us and said, as the market’s transitioning, we want a tool that can scale with us. It’s going to be bit more progressive, you could say kind of more forward-thinking from a technology standpoint. And for us, it was really understanding the power of this tool. And we really felt confident that if we’re going to go to market with this tool, our clients would reap the benefits. Just putting ourselves in the shoes of our clients, understanding this is the right product to take to them.

We don’t want to be in there for point solution, for fixing one single problem. We want the ability to go in there and really change and impact the enterprise. It can go from FP&A to revenue planning, to consolidations, and we really feel confident with those conversations and we know that it works.

We were lucky enough to be a pretty early partner of Anaplan and because of that, we were introduced to some pretty exciting projects early on. One that I really like to talk about is a hospitality management company. They have managers at different locations around the world, most of them in the States, and they want to do bottom-up planning right. So they want those managers on these sites to be able to put in numbers from a revenue perspective or forecast perspective, and have that roll up to what we call the mother ship right the corporate entity. And doing that in spreadsheets is extremely difficult—you have version control issues, you have email issues, you name it. You’re going to have a lot of different conflicts along the way from a planning perspective. And we went in there, and we were able to roll out Anaplan where these managers at these different locations can then put their numbers directly within Anaplan on a custom dashboard built just for that golf course or just for that role, and then have those numbers roll up in real time, allowing the mother ship to make the strategic decisions. I think that’s a great example of the collaborative nature that we’re trying to get from the cloud.

You can also look at some other scenarios where it’s really fixing a very complex problem. Anaplan has one of the strongest modeling engines out there in the space, and oftentimes, some of these really complex, let’s say revenue planning scenarios, are going to break Excel. So we were really proud to go into a mobile gaming company, since we know mobile games are blowing up today, and app purchases, where we see users coming on month over month and they do not understand attrition associated with that. When a user comes on, how quickly after that are they going to fall off perhaps or stop generating revenue for us? That’s really the lifeboat of that business, and we will be going there and creating a model that really shows that predictive analytics allows them to bring new games to the market with confidence.

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