WT?... I’m presenting at KSCOPE13!

jessica cordova.JPG

Guest Blogger: Jessica Cordova, ARC EPM Consulting

In the beginning

Why oh why did I have this insane idea of presenting at Kscope13? I’m busy, there is no way I can find the time to put a presentation together, and if I do find a small window of opportunity, chances are that something else may come up and take priority. That’s been the story of my life, something is always, and I mean always,  going to come up and I couldn’t help thinking of various “What If” scenarios that would prevent me from dedicating time to put together just one good presentation, something I really I want to do. However, I’m analytical and a planner by nature, that’s just the way I am. With self-awareness, I dared myself to break the cycle and get out of my comfort zone. 

First thoughts and an abstract

I reached out to Professor CLSolve (aka Cameron Lackpour who wants to stress he got just as far as a BS in MIS and that’s as far as his secondary education goes) for guidance with this insane-to-me-and-maybe-everyone-else idea to present on Essbase Tuning/Optimization and ODI Data Integration. Was it insane? Too much content? Too disparate in concept? But maybe not so insane: It had a compelling story line that involved a discouraged administrator who did not have enough hours in the day to "invest" the time to tune his application (so all too true to life) and two characters in super hero outfits who come into his humdrum administrator life and save the day (wait, maybe yes, this was a little, no, a lot insane). Yes, I am a Sci-fi junkie. And I embrace creativity, ideas, and when tasked with a vision I’m all in, in case you couldn’t tell. 

Although the thought of getting Professor CLSolve to join me in wearing super hero outfits was what motivated me if for nothing but the humiliation/ridiculousness factor, the idea continued to evolve through our discussions and we finally came up with the Top Six Advanced Planning Topics – if you were there you know it thankfully did not involve spandex. The focus of the presentation had changed a lot -- I no longer had a central narrative. But the concept was the same – getting the best out of a Planning application. The new idea was to focus on areas that are often overlooked and/or not utilized efficiently within Planning implementations. I submitted my abstract and thought to myself, “What are the chances of my abstract being selected?” and forgot about it. : /

What do I do now?

Well, the abstract was selected and reality sunk in very quickly. We split-up the topics and quite quickly it got way out of control. Two type “A” personalities with 36 years of combined experience think they know a lot (which they might even do) and that translates into a lot of detailed content. I combined our slides, contacted Cameron, and said to him “We have over 140 slides and it does not include our introduction slides.” I didn’t want to cut anything out and neither did he.

How to handle this dilemma? Cameron made some recommendations on consolidating slides and I followed through. I swallowed my ego and really took on board many of his suggestions with the thought that I’m presenting with an experienced speaker who has done this probably over hundred times (The Professor wants to interject with a “not really 100, not even close” comment). In contrast, my typical presentations involve presenting to corporate board members and/or hands-on training with a minimum of ten bodies. I immediately decided that I’m the student in this area and he is Professor CLSolve. Cameron may never live this down.  ;)

Trying something new

Although the slides were now in good shape, we were still way over the 50 minute limit. Professor CLSolve had an idea, “Jess, how about we let the audience choose three of the topics and we pinky promise to deliver the rest via a webinar?” I immediately thought to myself,” The Kscope13 conference committee is axing this baby.”

I asked, “Cameron, has anyone done this?  Would the conference committee approve?” The good news is that actually, yes, they did approve this somewhat novel approach. Empowering the audience to vote on the topics was a brilliant idea that gave them control and the webinar approach gave ODTUG valuable webinar content. We scheduled dry runs, gave each other feedback, and we survived. 

Would I do it again?  You bet

Presenting at Kscope13 for the first time was a great experience. The room was at capacity; the audience asked great questions, and also provided great feedback. The bottom line is that I couldn’t have asked for a better coach and really appreciated the phenomenal support from ODTUG, the conference committee, and YCC. 

I feel that there is no such thing as over communicating – the Kscope13 team provided up to the minute communication and I have every single piece of communication in my inbox to prove it. I must take the opportunity to particularly thank Lori Lorusso for responding to my inquiries, I honestly think she has a keyword search with a built-in automated response. No inquiries were left unanswered and the response time was almost instantaneous or before the end of their day.

If you’re considering presenting at Kscope14, I highly recommend submitting an abstract. If it’s your first time presenting, I encourage you to seek guidance or feedback from an experienced presenter. I’ve learned in life, that success can come as easy as A, B, and C.

Admit your need

Believe what you cannot see


Breaking News from ODTUG ………………….

If you did not have the opportunity to attend the Top Six Advanced Planning Tips session or attend KSCOPE13, the good news is that we will be delivering the information via ODTUG’s webinar. We know how valuable your time is and we encourage you to invest your time if you wish to improve your Hyperion Planning environment. Before deciding to dismiss the valuable information that we are so eager to share with you, take a minute and ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Are your calculations rules taking long to calculate and are receiving unpleasant feedback from your user community?
  2. Has security administration become a bear?
  3. Are you manually migrating applications across environments?
  4. Are you in the process of implementing Hyperion Planning within your organization and do not feel prepared?
  5. Did you know that you can prevent data from being promoted by implementing Process Management (aka workflow) and leveraging the Data Form Validation feature?
  6. Are Essbase READ filters in Smart View and Financial Reports driving your users nuts?

If your answer is “Yes” to any of the questions above or “No” for question number five, you may not want to miss the opportunity to improve your environment and look like a super star. Did I forget to mention it’s a free webinar?

Week 1: Tuesday, August 6, 2013 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM EDT

Too Big for Kscope13 -- Part 1 of Six Advanced Planning Topics

Part one of this two part series is what we didn't cover at Kscope13, i.e., a general set of good Planning project practices and then a focus on two hacks that support those good practices:

  • Planning for Success
  • Using an Inherited Security Model
  • Bringing Metaread Filters to Planning


To register, click the link below:



Week 2: Wednesday, August 14, 2013 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM EDT

Too Big for Kscope13 -- Part 2 of Six Advanced Planning Topics

Part two of this two part series is for those who didn't come to our session at Kscope13. Oh, you should have been there because the Jessica and Cameron experience is best received whilst the two speakers are working on four hours of sleep each. Failing that, you now get us with a decent amount of rest (So maybe it was best you didn't come to our session?  Perish the Kscope14 attendance thought.) and the following topics: 

  • Melding and Managing Forms, Task Lists, and Process Management
  • Making Planning Aggregations Better With Focused Aggregations
  • Automated LCM Migrations


To register, click the link below:



Don’t miss it!!


For those who don’t know me and you are wondering what the question mark stands for in the title of this blog, it reads “What the Bananas?… I’m Presenting at KSCOPE13!”


Jessica Cordova

ARC EPM Consulting, LLC

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