BI is an essential tool for the entire company
At NGI, a production company in Nørresundby and the world's leading manufacturer of adjustable stainless steel machine shoes, they implemented their first BI solution in 2015. Initially, the solution was intended for visualization and reporting to the company's private equity owners, but it proved to be user-friendly and value-creating, leading to its expansion as an essential tool for all 100 employees in the company.
Kim Karlov Nielsen, the CFO, explains:
"NGI used to rely on reports from the company's ERP system until I joined the company. However, the company was acquired by a private equity firm in early 2014, which brought new requirements for reporting and visualization. That was one of the reasons I was brought into the company from my previous workplace, Vraa Laundry, where I had worked extensively with BI."
After exploring the market, Kim Karlov Nielsen narrowed down the choice of BI solutions to either TARGIT, which he had previously worked with, or a Qlik-based solution from Capana. Kim Karlov Nielsen invited Capana to demonstrate their system, and this sealed the deal for the company.
"I was convinced by Qlik after Capana demonstrated the depth and flexibility of the system. I was used to working with cube-based BI and was satisfied with it, but Qlik offers many more options in the interface, allowing easy changes in settings with variables and codes," says Kim Karlov Nielsen, adding:
"Moreover, Capana has incredibly competent people. There was an instant good chemistry, and they are easy to talk to and understand our needs. Additionally, it was important for us that Qlik is among the BI technologies that the international research firm Gartner considers to be at the forefront in their 'Magic Quadrant'."
Self-sustaining solution with strong support
NGI's BI solution was developed and implemented in spring 2015, and after the initial implementation, the company is now largely self-sufficient. Kim Karlov Nielsen explains that the company primarily uses Capana's BI specialists for collaboration and inspiration in using BI or when specific challenges arise that their own staff cannot solve.
"We can always contact Capana if we need assistance, but one of the significant advantages of a Qlik-based solution, in my opinion, is the extensive international support forum on Qlik's website. Here, one can quickly find solutions and inspiration for most things, providing great efficiency in everyday tasks," says Kim Karlov Nielsen.
Self-sustaining solution with strong support
It quickly became apparent that the Qlik solution fully met the company's needs. The solution provided NGI with precisely what was required: a robust tool for visualizing and reporting to the board of directors and owners in the private equity firm.
"It allows us to visualize our growth and profitability, which naturally are significant concerns for our owners. It enables us to see where we are doing things right and where we may be going wrong. We have real-time data updated every quarter, making the solution a valuable daily tool, particularly in sales, where we can constantly monitor whether we are on or off target. We have also automated certain reports to receive immediate notifications if we exceed or fall below certain KPIs," explains Kim Karlov Nielsen, adding:
"Moreover, it is an incredibly flexible system. You can practically do anything you dream of. It is effortless to search across data and find the precise information you need."
Preparing for the 2nd generation of BI
NGI and Capana are currently working on deploying the 2nd generation of the company's BI, which will build on top of a new ERP system and is based on Capana's partnership with the Aarhus-based BI provider, TimeXtender.
Kim Karlov Nielsen explains:
"In the second generation of our BI solution, which we are currently in the process of rolling out, we are using a combination of technologies to get the best of both worlds. We are using TimeXtender, which is a visual tool, to create the data foundation. On top of that, we are implementing Qlik, which we will use for visualization."
With this new solution, the use of BI will be expanded throughout the entire company, from management to individual operational employees in production, warehouse, administration, etc.
"This solution will be rolled out to all approximately 100 employees in the company, making it an integrated part of our daily operations at all levels of the company. For example, the solution will be able to display the inventory on each shelf and provide each employee with a dashboard and detailed reporting with the specific information they need for their daily work. As a result, it will become an essential tool in all departments, from sales and production to logistics and finance. We will extensively utilize the solution in our daily operations once it is implemented alongside the new ERP system," concludes Kim Karlov Nielsen.
The 5 key results NGI has achieved using Capana's BI solution:
Visualization of growth and earnings for reporting to the company's private equity owners.
Ongoing monitoring of whether KPIs are met and things are done correctly.
Value-adding tool for all 100 employees of the company.
Full overview of all departments, including sales, inventory, production, and logistics.
Flexible BI solution that is user-friendly and with good support, enabling the company to be self-sufficient.