Dusty Byers is in charge of Technical and Infrastructure Services for the Hyperion Line of Business at Velocity. He has over 15 years of experience in the Oracle and Hyperion space in a variety of roles and is currently responsible for both the deployment of new Velocity Hyperion customers and the ongoing support of current customers.
Oracle announced the general availability of Hyperion EPM over a year ago, and many companies are now ready to make the transition.  
The 1.2.3 update is a very interesting release for Hyperion customers with an elevated user experience, new powerful integrations and many additional features.  Some of the new elements available in Oracle EPM include:
  • Oracle EPM Mobile application compatibility
  • Certified compatibility with Windows 8, Internet Explorer 10 and MS Office 2013, Microsoft Hyper-V (Virtualization Windows Server 2008 and Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) for Windows)
  • Smart View Metadata Update
  • New print engine that does not require 3rd Party PDF generators
  • Ability to format report annotation text
  • FDMEE - integration with other source systems, custom scripts to perform import tasks and inclusion of ERPi and ODI product functionality
  • HFM – Data form/grid enhancements, ability to migrate base-level data and application configurations through LCM
  • Hyperion Planning – ASO Plan types, task list dashboards, dynamic modeling, creating members on the fly, and flexible custom dimensions for various plan types 
  • A complete list of the hottest new features of the upgrade can be found here.
As organizations plan their own upgrade to Hyperion, I recommend they consider the following:
Reassess Your Technology Platform and IT Strategy
Depending on which version of Hyperion you’re migrating from, upgrading to v11.1.2.3 can present an opportunity to re-evaluate your technology strategy. Many companies making the jump to the v11 platform are considering virtualization of their Hyperion infrastructure, using hybrid and private clouds, engaging off-premise hosting partners, and/or completely outsourcing their Hyperion solution. This upgrade initiative should not be overlooked as an opportunity to enhance your IT strategy!
Familiarize Yourself with the Upgrade Process, Path and Resource Requirements
Upgrades generally go more smoothly if all team members and process owners have a common set of expectations about the upgrade process from the beginning.  Depending on your existing version of Hyperion, you may choose to perform a standard upgrade or a re-implementation.  Many customers that are on much older versions of Hyperion have chosen to perform a re-implementation.  This approach allows customers to eliminate most, if not all, of their customizations that have been replaced with functionality that now exists within the Hyperion suite. 
A typical upgrade will take approximately 6 to 8 weeks to complete. Timeframes are generally contingent on application complexity and customizations. In the initial phases of a Hyperion upgrade project, minimal time from users in finance and accounting may be required. However, as the project nears the testing phases, significant time will be needed from finance users for data validation and user acceptance testing.
Establish and Follow a Formal Project Plan
Every upgrade needs a path to follow to ensure the projected milestones are met. With a detailed project plan, each objective can be tracked to completion or exceptions identified and mitigated.  In order to ensure the success of your upgrade, the planning and project management rigor is extremely important.  
Review and Understand All New Features and Impacts
A critical review and assessment of new features and enhancements in v11.1.2.3 compared to your current release is valuable to determining which capabilities you want to invest in and implement.  This can result in the retirement of many customizations and/or enhancements to existing processes and tools.
For example, Hyperion v11.1.2.3 offers new compatibility with a variety of web browsers that directly impacts your end users.  Additionally, converting to newly available tools like FDMEE as a replacement for FDM and Calculation Manager for managing Business Rules are significant efforts that should not be overlooked. 
Finally, it is important to evaluate the new and existing toolsets that may improve your users’ experience with Hyperion.  Specific questions you’ll want to ask before proceeding with any upgrade to v11.1.2.3 include:
  • Is the upgrade initiative an opportunity to convert some legacy Smartviews to Financial Reports using FR Studio? 
  • Should we implement new functionality like Process Management or begin leveraging Life-Cycle Manager for organic backups and migrations? 
  • Should we migrate to Financial Data Management Enterprise Edition (FDMEE) or stay with the original FDM product until we are forced to migrate in the next upgrade release?
Additional questions will pop up during the process, but with a strategic set of objectives and a clear understanding of realistic expectations, you’ll be on the path to enjoying the benefits of the v11.1.2.3 release.  If you are still unsure of how to proceed, or are in need of additional assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact us and speak with one of our Hyperion experts or learn more about our Elevate 1.2.3 Program.