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Types[ edit ] Loosely speaking, the software can be categorized into the following types: Small business oriented strategic and business planning. Here, the focus is primarily upon developing goals, a business plan and a financial projection.
This particular category is often customized by a company and may consist of multiple elements that can cover a wide range of requirements. Word processing and spreadsheet templates are common in this area.
Consolidation is often a critical aspect of this domain with a variety of enterprise software, OLAP On Line Analytical Processing or multi-dimensional spreadsheets and databases used. ROLAP combines relational and multi-dimensional capabilities.
In recent years[ when? Dashboards, first made popular by the idea of the balanced scorecard are common means of reporting on multiple dimensions of ongoing performance.
While a small category, software for business planning and consolidation download games scenario analysis does exist. It tends to be relatively simple in nature due to the belief of many scenario facilitators that scenarios should be more stories than numerical models. It may seem strange to include computer simulation and war-games as strategic planning software.
The assumption behind strategic management was that separation of planning from execution was ineffective, so strategic planning should be devolved in the organization to those who would executive. Simulations and wargames became a way of sharing knowledge about markets and provide a cognitive frame for decision making.
There is a long history in strategic planning of the use of predictive models. In the s, the Strategic Planning Institute collected data on the performance of business units at its subscribers. The first[ citation needed ], managerial expert system, Alacrity was developed by Allstar Advice Inc.
Typically narrow in focus and don't encompass a full set of planning, execution and monitoring processes. First, in the s, the increasing availability of personal computers lowered the barriers to software development and made computers increasingly available to more managers.
But it's worth remembering that even inselling strategic planning software often required selling a manager a computer and training them how to use productivity software i.
Laptops were initially nonexistent and the state of art in portability was a sewing machine sized luggable computer. Previously, report creation often required hand writing or dictation which was then typed up by a secretary or word processing pool.
Second, in the early days of strategic planning concepts were few. Concepts typically included decentralization e. As a result, strategic planning software was relatively simple to create via word processing templates, graphical outputs and budgeting models.
In this approach the vision was to create a computer application that aids in a strategic planning process. The user was to be guided through the steps of the planning process. The process of guidance existed at several potential levels: Software of this type may use questionnaires, categorical judgments, financial or market modeling and in rare cases rule based expert systems.
As a general rule, off the shelf applications are rarely successful except for relatively unskilled entrepreneurs lacking a formal business education, which perhaps accounts for the software's lack of commercial success.
The most commonly used strategic planning tools and techniques tend to be relatively simple and the models used have a high level of abstraction requiring diligent interpretation and modification by participants.
Systems that promise answers, e. SWOT analysis strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats is a good example of a heuristic that is useful but also easy to misapply. Cascading of action plans makes intuitive sense but is frequently done in such a way as to demotivate employees.
Because of the difficulty of combining strategic planning, strategic management, portfolio management, information technology strategy's congruence with business strategy, implementation monitoring, scenarios and contingency planning, risk analysis, balanced scorecard specifically and dashboards generally, the strategy process tends to be difficult to deal with comprehensively in a single software package.
In large companies, the constant tends to be that the financial function ends up with significant influence over the process because of the requirement to report to the Board of Directors and manage capital and operating budgets.
Agile planning[ edit ] One of the current[ when? By their very nature, agile methodologies tend to be strong on emphasizing employee accountability and less interested in documentation.
Excessive documentation becomes an obstacle to revision as new information is gained about competitors, customers, distributors and suppliers. Agile's importance is driven by the faster rate of technology innovation, the lower cost of developing applications, the increase in the number of companies and individuals with similar capabilities, and faster learning from markets.
An excellent example of an extremely well specified agile methodology is Scrum. Scrum falls into the category of a methodology for autonomous work teams. Scrum approaches are now expanding outside of its initial application area in software development to other areas of business.The initial concept behind strategic planning software was the product of two different trends.
First, in the s, the increasing availability of personal computers lowered the barriers to software development and made computers increasingly available to more managers. Consolidation Scenarios Get expert insight into real-world planning and consolidation scenarios through the use of example-driven best practices and implementation advice.
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