Easts Group enjoys improved business insights

Streamlining reporting across multiple data sources with IBM Cognos Express

Published on 06-Jan-2012

Validated on 08 Jul 2013

"Our goal was to work smarter, not harder. We needed a single point of truth to better understand our members." - Scott MacDonald, Chief Financial Officer, Easts Group

Easts Group

Media & Entertainment

Deployment country:

Business-to-Business, BA - Business Analytics, BA - Business Intelligence

IBM Business Partner:


The Easts Group of Clubs wanted to better understand activities undertaken by its members so it could respond quickly to demand trends. It needed to simplify reporting of data from multiple different IT systems so managers could spend more time on productive analysis.

Business need:
The Easts Group of Clubs wanted to better understand activities undertaken by its members so it could respond quickly to demand trends. It needed to simplify reporting of data from multiple different IT systems so managers could spend more time on productive analysis.

The Group collaborated with Cornerstone, an IBM® Business Partner*, to develop streamlined reporting based on IBM Cognos® Express – creating a ‘single point of truth’ and reducing effort generating reports so more time can be spent on analysis of data.

• Business reports that previously took 2-3 days to generate are now available at the ‘press of a button’ • Statutory reporting to meet compliance requirements took two days per month and is now accomplished in an hour

A single report across all business data, regardless of the system which holds it • The ability to drill down into every aspect of that data • Managers have more time to analyse data that better supports day-to-day operational decisions and longer-term planning • Business growth is better supported by clear visibility over demand trends

Case Study

The Easts Group incorporates the Sydney Roosters as well as a Registered Club which operates four venues across the Sydney area – Easts at Bondi Junction, the Waverley Bowling & Recreation Club, Kingswood Sports Club and Berkeley Sports Club. Across these locations, the Group and its staff provide a wide range of facilities to its members – including bars, restaurants, gaming lounges, function rooms and health and sporting facilities.

Operating in a highly competitive market, it is important for the Group to maintain a close eye on all business units for review of KPIs for each of its facilities. This enables it to respond promptly to changing demands – through member promotions and marketing, improved management of its existing operations and longer term planning for potential new facilities and upgrades.

Member wants and needs
The Group strives to achieve a better understanding of the mix of activities undertaken by its members and their guests in order to provide improved facilities for patrons and it was believed that this could be achieved by rationalising the variety of data stored under its variety of information platforms. Reviewing the data was time consuming. Adding to the difficulty, each area is managed by a different computer system and data collation took even more time to perform.

Cornerstone, a trusted partner
The Group initially engaged Cornerstone, a specialist in best practice Business Analytic solutions, to efficiently encapsulate all information about business activities into a single report.

Scott Macdonald, The Group’s Chief Financial Officer, says, “Our goal was to work smarter, not harder. We needed a single point of reference
to better understand our members’ activities.”

Cornerstone led the Group through a design and analysis process that culminated in the release of a series of weekly reports, delivered over the intranet and email. Subsequently, iterative improvements – by both Cornerstone and internal Group resources – have fine-tuned these reports to closely meet the continually evolving needs of the business.

IBM Cognos Express
The solution Cornerstone designed is based on IBM Cognos Express, utilising the Reporter and Xcelerator modules. IBM Cognos consolidates business data from a variety of different IT systems to provide a consolidated view.

Implementation of IBM Cognos has provided the Group with the new ability to:

    • Create a single report across all business data
    • Drill down into every aspect of that data
    • Generate business reports that previously took 2-3 days per week at the ‘press of a button’
    • Create statutory reports that previously took two days per month in an hour

With a user-friendly interface, their new streamlined reporting solution has the potential to greatly increase productivity within Group management.

Beyond productivity
Since implementation of its new reporting system, the Group has seen significant reductions in the time taken to produce reports, but the implications go beyond saving time to increased business responsiveness and better decision making.

Consolidated business data provides managers with an in-depth understanding of why members visit their club – and how they use it. For example, analysis of the detailed purchase history within one of the Club restaurants prompted the changing of opening hours – which has resulted in a better return on the facility.

According to Scott Macdonald, “The business has certainly saved a lot of the time that we used to spend generating weekly and monthly reports. However there’s potential for even greater returns from being able to make changes to the business as the result of analysing the data now easily available to us.”

Piers Wilson of Cornerstone says that IBM’s Cognos solution had previously only been available to large enterprises. “We’ve now delivered numerous Business Analytics solutions for mid-sized organisations using IBM Cognos Express, which was specifically developed for their needs and budgets. Having helped the Easts Group tackle reporting and analytics, we are extending the solution to automate their budgeting and forecasting processes in the future.”

About Cornerstone
Cornerstone is an IBM Premier Partner working with both Enterprise and Mid-Market organisations across Australia to help them design and deliver the appropriate Business Analytics solution – incorporating Dashboards, Reporting, Analytics, Budgeting and Forecasting and publishes a range of Best Practice Guides covering solution-specific processes and techniques. www.cornerstone.com.au

About Business Analytics
IBM Business Analytics software delivers actionable insights decisionmakers need to achieve better business performance. IBM offers a comprehensive, unified portfolio of business intelligence, predictive and advanced analytics, financial performance and strategy management,
governance, risk and compliance and analytic applications.

With IBM software, companies can spot trends, patterns and anomalies, compare ‘what if’ scenarios, predict potential threats and opportunities, identify and manage key business risks and plan, budget and forecast resources. With these deep analytic capabilities our customers around the world can better understand, anticipate and shape business outcomes.

Products and services used

IBM products and services that were used in this case study.

Cognos Express Xcelerator, Cognos Express Reporter

Legal Information

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