Mobile phone retailer, Best Buy Europe, has reduced the time staff take to produce critical business reports from days to hours, after investing in a business analytics platform.
The company, a joint venture between Best Buy and Carphone Warehouse, claims the system, Insight Analytics, has paid for itself in 12 months.
Best Buy took the decision to replace SAP's Business Objects platform with Insight Analytics two years ago. The move replaced a large number of spreadsheets used through the organisation with a single dataset.
"We wanted a single version of the truth," said Nick Boxall, MIS manager for global business services at Best Buy Europe. "Just about everybody was producing reports. It was a massive cottage industry, and it was difficult to know which data was the right version of the truth."
Best Buy installed Insight Analytics - which forms part of the company's Planview Enterprise portfolio management platform - in its project management office (PMO) to manage and monitor its project and IT work.
"We now get better compliance with data going into the system. Every project has a title, an owner and a go-live date. If data is incorrect, it shows up in a colourful bar chart and we can correct it," said Boxall.
The system produces reports automatically and creates graphics directly in PowerPoint presentations and other applications.
Integrating Insight Analytics into Best Buy's existing Planview Enterprise project portfolio management platform presented technical challenges, said Boxall.
"We are on an Oracle SQL database for PlanView, but we don't have many SQL people. We were reliant on Planview to do some SQL work," he said. "Planview produces something very generic, out of the box. They had to do a lot of bespoking to get it right for our needs."
The company plans to move to the latest version of Planview Enterprise. The upgrade will allow Best Buy staff to access Insight Analytics through Microsoft Sharepoint.