Center of Excellence Roles and Responsibilities
At its core, a Center of Excellence needs to have Executive Sponsorship at the highest level of the organization, and a technical expert with a deep understanding of how the platform works. — By Josh Baker, CoE Leader @ PJT Partners.
Every Center of Excellence is unique in its function and composition. To help standardize Centers of Excellence across the ecosystem, and provide a strong starting point for the development of new Centers of Excellence, this article will provide guidance for the high-level team structure of a typical Anaplan Center of Excellence, as well as detailed descriptions of the suggested members within it.
Here is a brief overview of the key roles included in most Centers of Excellence, and keep reading below for a deeper look at each individual role:
At its core, a Center of Excellence needs to have Executive Sponsorship at the highest level of the organization, and a technical expert with a deep understanding of how the platform works. These are your Chief Planning Officer and Master Anaplanner, respectively. In addition to those core foundational members, Centers of Excellence will have additional team members depending on the size and scale of the Center of Excellence related to the size of the current Anaplan footprint within the company. These additional roles typically include:
- A Center of Excellence leader who organizes the team.
- A group of dedicated model builders or Anaplanner council.
- Project management representation to coordinate ongoing implementations and efforts.
- Business subject matter experts (SMEs) to represent the needs of business functions to the Anaplan team.
- Quality assurance or production support representation to fulfill customer service functions for production models.
Everybody plays a role in ensuring successful Connected Planning.
Depending on the corporate culture and the charter of the Anaplan Center of Excellence, these resources may be located in several different parts of the organization. There is no one correct location for these resources, but the most successful Centers of Excellence have been those that are physically and organizationally located as close to the business planning users as possible. Most importantly, the team will be successful as long as its members share a common commitment to ensuring successful utilization of Anaplan and Connected Planning, and have a regular cadence to come together to work towards that common goal. Depending on your governance model, these resources may be located entirely on a central dedicated Anaplan Center of Excellence team, entirely federated within different existing business functions, or some balance of the two.
While each Center of Excellence is different, this structure and list of suggested Center of Excellence team members should provide a useful starting point to building a strong foundation for a solid Anaplan Center of Excellence. Share your organizational structure and recommendations or ask questions about how to implement this specifically for your company in comments section below.