The University of Surrey, like many other institutions in the field of higher education, is on a mission to transform, streamline and connect its planning and analytics processes both within and beyond its use in finance. That is why it has chosen to partner with Sempre Analytics and Anaplan to develop and launch a more integrated and comprehensive approach to the university's financial and operational planning.
Now, in the era of extended planning and analysis (xP&A), spreadsheets simply do not have the power, flexibility and connectivity required to build accurate enterprise-wide budgets, plans and forecasts in an agile way. By choosing to embrace Anaplan's modern self-service planning and analytics applications, the University will accelerate its ability to achieve its financial and non-financial targets.
When the Anaplan platform is fully deployed, which can happen in as little as nine weeks, the University's operational and financial teams will be given access to the data necessary to empower them to make informed decisions in their specific areas of responsibility.
Dan King, Director of Planning & Organisational Performance at the University of Surrey, said, "We chose Sempre Analytics as our partner to implement and manage the Anaplan SaaS solution because of their considerable experience in deploying business planning solutions in the higher education sector."
During Phase 1 of the project build, the University of Surrey will get access to an Anaplan connected planning solution that is flexible, simple to manage, and far less error-prone than spreadsheets. In addition to creating a total income and expenditure model for the next five years, rapid self-service scenario planning will be made possible, with traceable calculations and models available 24/7 on any device. The system will be easily extendable beyond finance into the university's core operations - for example, faculties will be able to adjust their student and research inputs to see the impact on their resource allocations - in addition to giving senior staff visibility of the impact of those "what if" scenarios.
The initial focus will be on producing student population, and fee income models - critical as student fees account for 50% of the university's income. This insight will also drive staffing allocation and research income projections.
During Phase 2 of the roll-out, the Anaplan platform will be integrated into the university's other systems, reducing manual processes, saving time, and incorporating additional data sources to give more detailed and accurate insight across the whole university.
While increased self-sufficiency is an overall objective, the University of Surrey plans to continue partnering with Sempre Analytics on its connected planning journey. For Neil Harvie, CEO of Sempre Analytics, that commitment is a source of both personal and professional pride. "We are delighted to be supporting the University of Surrey on their planning journey," said Harvie, "especially as I'm one of their alumni."
Harvie said the relationship exemplifies Sempre's business philosophy which is to enable organisations to achieve better business outcomes through the intelligent use of data.
"Our partnership and experience with Anaplan will ensure the university rapidly gets value from their investment, while their drive towards increased self-sufficiency will enable us to do what we do best; empower and enable our customers to fly on their own," he said.
Sempre Analytics has been delivering Anaplan solutions to customers in the higher education, construction, retail, and hospitality sectors, amongst others, for over eight years. As an Anaplan consultant, Sempre brings a deep understanding of the specific challenges of connecting financial and operational planning data and processes.