With more moving pieces than spokes on a bicycle wheel, the world's leading brand of quality bicycles and gear needed a way to better streamline operations and gain access to more comprehensive company data. That's why Giant Bicycles Inc. has been using the TARGIT Decision Suite manufacturing analytics since 2003.
Giant processes data coming in worldwide from thousands of orders and shipments for its Purchasing, Accounting, and Sales Departments on a daily basis. Data was funneled into the company's Microsoft Dynamics AX ERP system, but without a user-friendly data visualization and analytics front-end for everyday business users to build reports, analyses, and dashboards, that's where the data stayed.
TARGIT's Best in Class training and consultancy helped Giant build a data foundation on their existing Microsoft stack that best fit the company's unique needs. Giant combined the TARGIT Business Intelligence Accelerator (BIA) for Dynamics AX Inventory cube with their existing cubes to include and combine data for inventory, purchasing, sales, and warranty.
One of the major changes to their cubes included the addition of forecasting, which is done within AX, based on specific company requirements. These requirements are handled in the cube, making the forecasting figures available seamlessly in TARGIT.
Users were up in running in no time. With TARGIT, there's no need to be in IT to gain access to the information needed to make informed business decisions. Giant employees from every department take advantage of true self-service analytics every day. The Management Team benefits from using the analysis capabilities within TARGIT to create reports showing statistics based on all levels.
"Our Sales Department can't live without TARGIT," says Jean Scott, IT Business Analyst at Giant. "The solution is vital to everyday operations. TARGIT gives us the ability to look at all that information easily, and the Sales Department benefits from being able to make on-the-fly analyses," explains Scott. "It's easy to get an instant overview of the best-selling bike and the different categories of products and to act accordingly, hence improving position in the market."
Giant regularly utilizes TARGIT's Data Discovery tools for instant analytics from Microsoft Excel spreadsheets and other data sources outside the data warehouse. "Ad hoc reporting is easy to create in TARGIT, thus we save time and resources," says Scott.
Because Giant's TARGIT solution was specifically designed for their existing Microsoft Dynamics AX system, when Giant upgraded to the latest version of AX in-house, very little was needed to ensure TARGIT's performance remained harmonious. Scott concludes of the experience, "all TARGIT related tasks took less than a few hours."
When asked her favorite TARGIT feature, Scott didn't hesitate. "I like the ability to create multiple objects in an analysis and to drill into the criteria affecting the other objects," says Scott. "Most people are used to the traditional flat Excel reports, but once they see the multi-object drill-down feature, they see other possibilities in using the tool to get the data more efficiently. Since we upgraded to a newer version of TARGIT and also customized our cubes, we have expanded the usefulness of the tool. It is an integrated part of the daily business process. I do not know how we would function without TARGIT."