• Neil Doyle

What the Anaplan UI refresh really tells us...

I'm not a big fan of change. Slow and steady as it goes suits me just fine. But those guys up in York have done it again, bringing us our third major release of the year, or 2015.3 as the Anaplanners say. A major refresh of the Anaplan user interface, a crisper modern feel to a product which was already pretty cool. New colours, an Anaplan blue and some new icons top off a well crafted new release. All a bit superficial for me to be honest. When you've been blessed with a face like mine you can't get too caught up in matters of beauty. Thankfully there was a host of new functionality as well for those of us of an aesthetically challenged disposition. But what does this UI refresh really tell us?

There's a really nice saying - a rolling stone gathers no moss, and I think it's a particularly apt summary of what's happening up in the bonding warehouse in York. What we're really witnessing with this third release is Anaplans constant strive to better itself. To move, to change and to adapt. And quickly. Rapid development, moving the product further and further ahead of its competitors with not even a cursory glance over the shoulder. Anaplan has changed more in the 5 years I've been working with it than any on-premise tool can in twice that. That constant movement, the inability to stand still is what will continue to drive the hyper growth we've seen and propel Anaplan into a leading position. No longer the challenger, no longer the underdog, but the leader, the winner. Think Rocky vs Apollo Creed. The new kid on the block taking over the mantle of champion.

So what's coming? Well the Office integration looks better and better with every release. PowerPoint Addin looks fantastic, and the Excel Addin is improving. With the promise of Word integration on the way that'll knock off the holy trinity of Microsoft powerhouses. Probably the key development for me over the forthcoming months and quarters will be the addition of some space saving functionality around time subsets, allowing us to save space by decreasing timescales at a modular level. And of course I'm sure those crafty gremlins in York will have tonnes of aesthetic improvements to keep on top of clients needs - you know if the number isn't the right colour it isn't the right number!

And the best thing about all of this? You go home on a Friday night, put the feet up and watch a bit of Breaking Bad. You whittle away the weekend in a haze of horses and Paddy Power and arrive back into the office on a Monday morning feeling slightly tired and emotional. But hey presto you plug yourself back into the cloud and you're greeted by a whole new Anaplan. Those little gremlins have been gremlinning (I know it's not a word) away all weekend to bring you a new release and you didn't need to lift a finger. What more could one ask for?

It's onwards and upwards for Anaplan. More projects on the horizon, more clients to help, more modules to build, more dashboards to craft.

A rolling stone gathers no moss.