Published on 11-Jan-2010
"The IBM Cognos system gives us a more visual, focused view of the information than we ever had using spreadsheets, with the added benefit that automation saves analysts’ time and has virtually eliminated errors." - Bill Bootle, Head of Finance, Galderma
IBM Business Partner:
The IBM Cognos solution is able to combine data from several sources and deliver a selection of key reports to managers through a dashboard screen to give an immediate view of daily performance.
To replace a complex and inflexible spreadsheet reporting system that used manual data entry with an automated system that can be easily accessed by everyone in the business.
The IBM Cognos 8 BI system not only provides instant dashboard access to all managers but also allows business analysts and product managers to build ad hoc reports to identify trends and analyse promotions.
Automated reporting of daily sales for immediate view of business performance; dashboard screen with drill-through access to detail behind the summary reports for improved decision-making; superior analysis tools making trends and promotion analysis fast and simple to execute; Web delivery for remote access.
Galderma is a world-leading pharmaceutical company specialising in innovative products for dermatology patients and physicians. A joint venture between Nestlé and L’Oréal with a parent company based in Switzerland, the company manufactures and supplies a portfolio of drugs and skin care products aimed at treating skin and nail conditions.
Distribution of Galderma (UK) Ltd products to the healthcare sector is managed through wholesale networks, major pharmacy retail groups and direct to the National Health Service (NHS). Tracking sales and monitoring demand for products by different customer groups is crucially important for the effective management of the business and to ensure sales targets are met.
Daily sales data was previously fed into a spreadsheet for the purpose of reporting daily sales, but the spreadsheet had to be updated manually and the system was found to be inflexible. Galderma had already invested in IBM Cognos software licences with a view to producing more sophisticated daily sales reports and contracted change++ to help them define exact requirements and develop a broader range of reports.
The key challenge was to develop an automated daily sales reporting system that could be accessed by all users: finance staff who had previously entered data manually to the complex spreadsheet system, analysts who needed to review the sales data and produce ad hoc reports and, most importantly, product managers, the key users of the system, who needed to track the performance of specific brands and the products within those brands.
Discussions with Galderma confirmed that a daily sales system should allow:
- • Easy analysis of daily sales information
• Product sales trends and product sales history
• Facility to write simple ad hoc reports
• Opportunity to track the outcome of product sales initiatives.
It was necessary for field staff to be able to view reports using a browser- based interface that would allow them to drill down into the data to identify where sales were needed to meet targets, which products were selling best in the month and to which market sectors. In contrast, the Galderma board wanted a ‘top level’ view of daily sales, ideally in graphic format, to illustrate performance clearly and highlight any areas needing immediate attention.
change++ proposed using IBM Cognos 8 BI to build a browser-based dashboard screen to display key daily sales information. The benefit of the dashboard is that it can display the most important reports and business indicators, but is sufficiently flexible to allow those reports to be changed as necessary to reflect the current business focus. Another major benefit of IBM Cognos 8 BI is the product’s ability to report easily across multiple data sources. Galderma’s parent company, Nestlé, as an existing IBM Cognos software user, is an advocate of the product’s capabilities. Although this was a major consideration in selecting the IBM Cognos 8 BI suite is the product’s ability to report easily across multiple data sources. Galderma’s parent company, Nestlé, as an existing IBM Cognos software user, is an advocate of the product’s capabilities. Although this was a major consideration in selecting the IBM Cognos 8 BI suite, the final decision centred on the dashboard functionality that would deliver ‘at a glance’ reports on business performance.
Implementation was completed within the agreed timeframe and post-completion feedback was extremely positive, acknowledging that the project was delivered to the agreed specification, the change++ consultants who worked on site showed a strong understanding of the Galderma business model and responses to queries were always dealt with promptly and effectively.
At head office, Analysis Studio and Query Studio software now give in-house analysts excellent functionality allowing them to produce ad hoc reports and access detailed data in the database when required. Product managers and other head office staff can also use these products to build ad hoc reports and queries.
An existing Microsoft® SQL Server® database containing sales data was enhanced to add budgets and trends and additional product and customer information. Some specific data relating to Galderma’s Irish business was also incorporated, requiring a currency conversion module.
Galderma (UK) now has a browser-based, fully automated Daily Sales Reporting System, which delivers standard reports and full data analysis facilities to product managers, finance staff and other head office users. Field staff wanting detailed information on sales compared to budget, product sales by customer and sales trends can access reports wherever they are working. Senior management have an immediate view of business performance through the dashboard screen.
According to Galderma’s Head of Finance, Bill Bootle, “The IBM Cognos system gives us a more visual, focused view of the information than we ever had using spreadsheets, with the added benefit that automation saves analysts’ time and has virtually eliminated errors. For ad hoc analysis, we can build reports easily and the pre-defined reports give our managers an instant view of areas that need attention. The speed with which reports can be created and delivered is very impressive. The dashboard format has been very well received, so we’re now looking forward to further developments of the system.”
About IBM Cognos BI and Performance Management
IBM Cognos business intelligence (BI) and performance management solutions deliver world-leading enterprise planning, consolidation and BI software, support and services to help companies plan, understand and manage financial and operational performance. IBM Cognos solutions bring together technology, analytical applications, best practices, and a broad network of partners to give customers an open, adaptive and complete performance solution. Over 23,000 customers in more than 135 countries around the world choose IBM Cognos solutions.
Products and services used
IBM products and services that were used in this case study.
Cognos 8 Business Intelligence
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