Life’s Good. And, it’s even better with Business Intelligence. Consumer electronics giant LG Electronics India was looking for strong analytical capabilities for its transactional system and also wanted to reduce load and improve response time for viewing reports. It wanted quality decision-making from the data flowing in. A brand new BI deployment provided the answer.
Daya Prakash, the CIO of LG Electronics India, says that the company already had the data, but needed more utility. “We needed to improve customer service. The challenge was to take our supply chain to the next level vis-a-vis reporting analysis.” He agrees that in a sense, after having done their bit, LG Electronics India’s team members let their BI deployment do the rest. “The project began in October 2009,” recalls Prakash.
LG Electronics India had deployed ERP from Oracle in 2004. In the last two to three years, LG Electronics India’s IT team had been adding applications to its ERP system to meet new business requirements. “We did have strong transactional system running through Oracle ERP network, which helps in efficient enhancement of our supply chain and customer service, but then it was this next level we were involved in. And we realized that this big business requirement was a BI deployment.”
The company started evaluating different BI vendors in late 2008. Since Prakash has been involved in Nasscom’s Emergeout community--a platform for promising SMBs to showcase their product portfolios—he started looking for a suitable vendor in the community. He wanted a strong analytical platform with cost-effectiveness. That’s how the IT team came across Kautilya, an NCR-based company. Demo and proof done, the BI deployment went live in March 2010.
More than just cost difference
According to Prakash, Kautilya has a neutral platform infrastructure capable of a single install. It offers ad-hoc reporting to in-memory analytics and dashboard through a single repository and interface. “We found Kautilya beneficial in terms of total cost of ownership, which includes aspects like the licensing cost, implementation, post implementation, and annual maintenance. The amount of flexibility that an emerging company has is anytime better than an established vendor. We spent roughly around Rs 30 Lakh on this BI deployment,” he informs.
Amongst its features, Kautilya generates reports on various business trends, which specified users can subscribe to. The subscriber can then use the chat application to discuss various business trends mentioned in the reports, which can be saved for future reference. Incremental analysis of reports and comparison of reports can happen through this application. It is also integrated with Google maps. Information security is also well taken care of – making sure that the data reaches only authorized users.
Overcoming the challenges
Deploying BI applications across LG Electronics India was not an easy journey. “At LG Electronics India, we have different departments with different levels of maturity. Bringing all end users on the same level of maturity and putting them together on a high level of commitment was a challenging task. As a large scale project for Electronics India, we had several rounds of discussions with the senior management to build a strategy around leveraging our BI deployment. We decided to follow department-wise roll-over strategy,” says Prakash.
To ensure better understanding within end users, a steering committee was formed which included people from different departments, while ownership of the BI deployment remained with the IT department. The key users representing individual departments trained their respective team members.
LG Electronics India’s deployment of BI has been successful, with its central server located at the company’s mother plant in Greater Noida. It has received 100% adoption from end users. The company now plans to take its BI deployment ahead by adding functions.