Packing a Punch

DQI Bureau
New Update

Every successful automotive manufacturing company requires real-time updates

of customers, suppliers and competitive information. According to Umesh Mehta,

vice president, IT, Asia MotorWorks, "Decisions related to sales and quality

management, product development, and production planning and manufacturing are

dependent on timely and accurate information." Recognizing the fact that IT

risks are now business risks, AMWs IT team decided to provide operational BI to

the business users to enable them to create an IT environment that produces

timely and actionable business insights.


A Quick Dossier

AMW used SAP for various business processes like planning, purchase, production,
sales, and finance on Oracle 9i database. However, the SAP standard reports used

were not sufficient, especially for the senior management who required data for

comparing two different horizons on the same data set, for example, warranty

cost of products vis--vis sales, purchasing trends vis--vis sales, sales

vis--vis product costing. This emphasized the need for the availability of user

friendly MIS reports. Even operational users required adhoc analysis capability

with slice and dice, drill-down, drill-through like functionalities.

Furthermore, Mehta opines that insufficient data access slowed down

collaboration and dragged down efficiency in turn making business processes more

expensive. With the recession casting a spell, it led to the adoption of BI at


Umesh Mehta, VP, IT, Asia

Motor Works


Mehta aptly remarks that when cash runs out, thinking starts! So, it was

decided to perform a POC. Different BI tools available in the market were

evaluated and 1KEY was selected. During POC, reports were generated from SAP and

non-SAP data, enabling AMW to understand the data in terms of sales, warranty

trends, spending patterns, production costs, etc. Mehta explains that on being

convinced about the benefits of the project, more value addition was

incorporated through inputs received from internal clients. But, the technical

challenge was to consolidate data to ensure better understanding.


Another key challenge was to define a clear user information needs. The focus

was on the actual needs of the business users who needed up-to-date information.

Standard operating practices were created based on which internal controls and

checks were established.

Three distinct strategic objectives from the mission statement were

identified were to improve business performance through information delivery;

deliver information to the business community reflective of its processes and

their outcomes; and lastly provide appropriate levels of formatting, timeliness,

history, detail and quality as specified in business validated release or

project specifications.

Return on Investment

AMW expects to improve its y-o-y growth by around 10% and also increase its
market share. AMW has noticed significant improvements in the bottom line

including increased productivity, material cost savings, and a more agile

strategy development process with immediate insight into business performance

metrics that will help drive future success. BI has definitely improved the

quality of information as now it is easier to notice clear trends by linking two

data sets. Sophisticated information management of the companys data helps spot

trends more quickly, predict risk more accurately and manage inventory more

efficiently. After the finance function, BI was deployed in sales, marketing,

and field services. With BI, AMW expects 25-30% productivity improvement in a

years time. Approximately, 30% more time was spent on strategic analysis to

improve speed and quality of decision making. In the future, AMW intends to

strengthen its grip over virtualization, security, CRM and dealer management

system, and PLM solutions.

Shilpa Shanbhag