Mark Shemaria is truly a part of the fabric of Anaplan, having been around since the beginning. His vast experience in architecture, design, and implementation makes him a highly sought-after resource.
Tell us a little bit about your experience here at Anaplan. How long have you been here? What areas have you worked in?
I have focused on supporting some of our most innovative and challenging customers as they progress through the Anaplan platform journey, optimizing the value of using this amazing technology.
I was the first Anaplan architect in North America, helped in forming the original Master Anaplanner groups. I’m in my 8th year at Anaplan.
What is your area of expertise, and how did you achieve it?
One of our most important customers, of course, is Anaplan. Anaplan’s use of the Anaplan platform as a proving ground for Connected Planning and as a showcase for what is truly possible for our customers is my primary objective.
For 25+ years I have developed and deployed successful architectures, designs, implementations and testing of management systems using multi-dimensional data structure technologies. I trained and licensed as a CPA and before Anaplan worked with Adaytum, Cognos and TM1 EPM technologies.
What makes Anaplan a great place to work?
Anaplan is a great place to work because of the opportunity to meet and work with people passionate about using this powerful new technology.
Tell us one fun fact about yourself!
I’m a soccer dad of a power wheelchair soccer athlete who plays in National competitions.
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Join us for the next session, June 4 through June 7 — featuring Mark Shemaria answering questions about Center of Excellence best practices and Model Sparsity principles.
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In your opinion, once you have set-up a CoE, does it make sense to have power users on the users side that take care of "maintenance" tasks? (e.g. loading latest data with a specific action created for them, creating the new version, managing read/write access by version, etc.)
The primary things to focus on with a COE are the "end-to-end" process steps which are necessary to maintain the various model and data model environment. Essentially, defining and documenting what the steps are. Defining the processes leads to things like assignment of responsibilities and automation. Segregating the role of users responsible for maintenance and updates to users who have been assigned running actions and data validation, as an example is a solid idea.
Models are not static, your business environment is not static, so having a well defined process description also entails responsibility for updating the various processes used in Anaplan, whether data load, model logic, model access, outputs, etc.
What's the best practice to manage workspace administrator rights within a CoE?
We split our workspaces by department (Sales Finance, FP&A, etc.). It's the best way to manage the diffrent users and user access.
However, a model builder can work accross different workspaces (1 model in workspace A and 2 models in workspace B) and we would like to limit his administrator access only to those models. Currently that's not possible.
I What would you suggest? Ideally, we would like to have "model administrator" tickbox (in addition to the workspace administrator).
User access maintenace across multiple models by the use of a central user administration model (think User Access Management) which is the source for updating user access in multiple models is a recommended approach.
Can you expand on this? I'm assuming it'd be best ot have a user admin model for access management in a Data Hub. Can roles also be assigned using such a model?
The User Admin model will be "governed" by the WSA rules of the Workspace and Model. Hence, the Admin model should be in a Workspace where the person who has WSA rights could change other models and users. The assumes that this model maintenance requires WSA/model build access, which is not necessary, however, i.e. a standard model builder could do admin /non-WSA work. Roles are assigned by model to users. A user in a model can only have one role. Roles limit access to modules, hence dashboards, lists, actions etc. Roles can be assigned in an Admin model and imported to the target model(s).