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Oracle Digital Assistant for EPM

I had the opportunity to try out ODA for EPM and it looks great. Here is how to get started. Thanks to Mike Casey, Pat Malay and Joe Huang for the wonderful session.

The ODA for EPM is available for FCCS and ARCS currently. ODA will be available for other EPM offerings in the future.

Configure EPM Skills in Oracle Digital Assistant

First things first, you need access to an ODA Instance. Once you login, navigate to the Development > Store.

Search for EPM in the search bar and you should see the EPM Digital Assistant in the Skill Store search results. Click on Options > Pull.

Navigate to the Skills page and you should see two new EPM skills:

  • Consolidation and Close
  • Account Reconciliation

Let’s focus on Consolidation and Close Skill. Click on Options > Extend

Enter the following information:

  • Display Name (Mandatory)
  • Name (Mandatory)
  • Description
  • Primary Language

You can look at the pre-defined intents and entities. But for this post we are not going to change anything. Lets setup the following information in the Settings tab. Make sure to scroll down to the Custom Parameters Section:

  • da.epmUser (EPM User Name)
  • da.epmPassword (EPM Password)
  • da.devFccsBaseUrl (EPM Instance URL. Should be the REST API url)

In real projects, you will have to customize the Entities of the skill, like dimension members. Validate and train the model.

Configure Channel in Oracle Digital Assistant

Next steps is to configure a Channel and associate the Skill with the Channel. Navigate to Channels and then click on “Add Channel”.

Provide the following information and click on Create:

  • Channel Name
  • Description
  • Set Channel Type as Oracle Web
  • Allowed Domains as * (We can restrict the specific domain as well)
  • Disable “Client Authentication Enabled” check box

Once you have created the Channel. Make sure to associate the Skill with the Channel. Copy the Channel Id as this is needed for the next steps. Make sure the Channel is enabled.

Configure ODA in Oracle EPM

Login to FCCS and navigate to Application > Settings. Provide the following information:

  • Channel ID
  • Service Name (URL of the ODA Portal. Make sure to exclude https://)

Test Drive

Navigate to Home Page and you should see the Chat Bot.

Click on Chat Bot and let’s try show pov, show close status and consolidate commands.

  • “show pov” displays the current pov.
  • show close status displays the close status
  • Consolidate EMEA runs the consolidation job for EMEA Entity

There are many other functions available.

Thoughts

Personally, I am really excited to these features. One of the best features is that you can integrate the ODA with Microsoft Teams, Slack etc. The users can interact with the Bot and get the same results as the Web Bot in FCCS. There is also an option to invite the Bot to a group chat in MS Teams.

Another option is the flexibility to add more skills or extend the skills. Behind the scenes, the bot invokes EPM REST APIs. So if there is a function you want to add you can add a custom function and invoke the corresponding REST API.

If you are new to ODA, check this link to get an idea about how to create a new skill, validate and train the model.

Let me know your thoughts. Are you excited about these features? Have you had a chance to explore ODA for EPM? If you have questions let me know.

Manager Strategic Cloud Services (Oracle Cloud ERP, EPM), Integration Specialist, Big Data, Data Science & Python Enthusiast)

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