Fashion manufacturer Red Wing Shoes has become more responsive to emerging business problems after becoming the first user of Lawson's M3 enterprise resource planning system to deploy the supplier's business intelligence application alongside it.
Red Wing Shoes, a US-based manufacturer that globally distributes brands such as Carhartt, told the Lawson annual user conference that it had deployed 12 dashboards to meet different business needs since embarking on a roll-out programme in August last year.
The business users that are saving the most time by using the dashboards are the senior executives and the mobile salesforce.
Paige Stajkowski, senior business analyst at Red Wing Shoes, said, "We were struggling to get reports to end-users. Users used to have to go look for exceptions, but now it is all automated for them."
The dashboards provide relevant financial information in a summarised format. Armed with this information, executives can now quickly drill down to examine different parts of the business more closely.
The firm's global mobile salesforce is also accessing information more quickly because they are now only provided with images of reports rather than real-time information. Because the salespeople have to connect to the virtual private network remotely, giving them images of reports that IT has already run has enabled a substantial time saving.
Using the dashboards, salespeople are now able to get an account profile in about a minute, compared with up to 10 minutes previously.
Red Wing Shoes is using Lawson's Business Performance Warehouse, part of the M3 ERP system, to hold the data needed by its new business performance application. The datawarehouse runs on a SQL Server database.
Stajkowski said, "The number of dashboards will double or triple in the next year because departments across the business have been constantly saying that they should have a dashboard for various other new business processes."
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This was first published in March 2007