Top down history Historically, our BI target was executive staff. Served up aggregated historical financial data via Cognos. If an executive in Dayton sees a receivables, inventory, expenses, sales, etc., management problem in a particular local company, they will call someone who will call someone who will call the store mgr. The manager will probably be caught off gard at a most inopportune time. The resulting conversation will feed punitive to him/her. Challenge Executive awareness is critical, but if behavior change is needed to improve operating results, that change is needed at the local company level. Bottom up future Put actionable and insightful historical and forward-looking internal and external information into the hands of local managers and help them learn to use it. Quickly lead to real learning that manifests in behavior changes. Provide an organizational learning tool. Requires more than just rehashing past financial results. If we can put insight into the hands of that manager to help him/her see and understand the problem, they either resolve it, calls peers at other local companies, or goes up the mgt chain for particular focused assistance
May 6, 2010
Who are we?
WinWholesale is a leading supplier of domestic and industrial
supplies and materials
Headquartered in Dayton, Ohio.
Privately-held, consisting of more than 520 wholesaling
corporations, each specializing in
Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, (HVAC) & Refrigeration
Industrial pipes, valves and fittings
Fastening hardware and industrial supplies
What is our environment?
Internally developed iSeries based ERP and POS
Internally developed mainframe based financial system
Wintel / Java based intra- and inter-net web applications
Wintel based data warehouse
SQL Server backend
Cognos and Microsoft Data Access
What was our need?
Top down history
Historically, our BI target was executive staff
Drive grass roots behavior change
Bottom up future
Information delivered to local company
Actionable / Insightful
Historical and forward looking
Internal and external
What were they?
Data warehouse was only receiving monthly feeds
Desired behavior changes required more than financial data
Needed pricing, customer interaction, and purchasing.
Named-user licensing scheme was too expensive to deploy for all
How did we deal with them?
Created a nightly invoice detail feed to our data warehouse
Evaluated open source BI tools and Microsoft BI suite
Settled on the MS BI suite
What we did
Built a simple set of prompted web reports
Sales and financial data provided compelling value
Heavy on the graphical representation
Included reporting usage of the tool
Worked with our operations leadership team
Developed a playbook to define how to get maximum value
Then we built the plays into our reports
Providing Webex training to the potential local company users
Worked closely with a variety local company leaders
Fine tuned the usability of the reports
What are the results?
COO identified $2M worth of margin improvement in the first 3
months of release
Usage has grown 200% since January 2010
Tool has quickly become critical to managing our local company
Where are we going?
Graphical dashboards for our local companies
Rolled up dashboard for operations hierarchy
Drill through to details for both
Monthly and Annual Projections
Include external market data