PeopleSoft Unites Apps

AppConnect consolidates data from various sources into a single repository.

PeopleSoft Inc. is quietly planning its own stable of composite applications that cull information from a variety of internal and disparate applications.

A counterpoint to SAP AGs xApps applications, PeopleSofts AppConnect integration technology bundles the companys Portal, Integration Broker and Enterprise Data Warehousing software into a single package to integrate PeopleSoft and non-PeopleSoft applications. The Pleasanton, Calif., company has now developed two new cross-functional applications.

Due next month, the two applications fall under PeopleSofts PeopleSoft Financial Management Solutions and Human Capital Management product lines.

A part of its Financial Management Solutions Blueprint—which includes the CFO Portal (available now) and Investor Portal (due next quarter)—the new Global Consolidations application enables the consolidation of general-ledger information that is spread across disparate systems.

Designed for large organizations that have multiple general-ledger systems as a result of acquisitions or disjointed accounting package purchases, the Global Consolidations application uses AppConnect to pull disparate information into one repository. The data is then translated into a consistent format and rendered reportable to the Securities and Exchange Commission, officials said.

The second application, SIM (Sales Incentive Management), gathers information from a variety of applications—for example, human resources, financials, and customer relationship and supply chain management—to perform sets of calculations that determine a rate of sales incentive compensation, based on a variety of factors.

The SIM release next month will target the high-tech industry, with subsequent releases that will focus on banking, insurance and retail verticals.

While the SIM application is intended for individuals who design compensation plans for sales professionals, PeopleSoft envisions its use for various divisions across an organization, with development occurring on a customer demand basis, officials said.

Following its theme of vertically oriented development, PeopleSoft plans to develop additional cross-functional applications as well in the areas of communications, packaged goods, government, education and others that become relevant.

Investor Portal, which was announced in August, provides financial information, key performance indicators, industry benchmarks and modeling tools to assist investors in keeping informed about a companys performance.

Using AppConnect technology, Investor Portal accesses information from a variety of applications and content sources.

PeopleSofts CFO Portal, which was also announced in August 2001, takes more of an internal approach, accessing disparate applications within an organization to provide a dashboard to chief financial officers, assisting them in keeping track of spending and projects in their areas of responsibility.

"Both products would not have applicability with us—since we have one general ledger," said Keith Malmborg, project manager at Santa Clara University, in Santa Clara, Calif. However, AppConnect is formalizing technology that PeopleSoft has been using in its base products. Those are the technologies weve been using to interface to disparate systems. Them formalizing that to make it easier to talk to the world around them is the recognition that you need the systems to be able to talk to each other.

"PeopleSoft is recognizing that to be a true enterprise player, information is spread in multiple systems, and you need to be able to access that," Malmborg said.