Saison Information Systems Streamlines Data Integration, Visualization, and Reporting with HULFT
Japan’s enterprise systems and operations powerhouse reduced reporting time and costs in just one month.
Headquartered in Tokyo, Saison Information Systems (SIS) was established in 1970 to integrate the information processing functions of the Saison Group (formerly known as the Seibu Distribution Group)
Saison Information Systems encompasses key sectors such as financial services, retail, and technology. With an overarching goal of optimizing key business processes, the company set out to create a reporting and visualization solution that would give team members the tools to extract deeper insights from big data. From pipeline information to cost management, it was imperative that the solution provide comprehensive, project level reporting to generate consistent insights from across the organization to achieve ultimate visibility.
Cumbersome, manual reporting with Excel
Traditionally, Saison Information Systems relied heavily on Excel for reporting. However, reports were not intuitive, did not contain real-time data, and were time consuming to produce. Standard report formats were unsubstantial, making it difficult to understand reports from various departments. Standardizing and visualizing these reports on a corporate level was a daunting task.
In order to generate reports to keep the business moving forward and streamline processes, it was time to move beyond simple Excel reports and into a solution that would visualize reports in an easy, digestible manner. However, with Salesforce Automation and customer resource management, it typically took at least three months to introduce and adopt tools to the company’s needs.
Creating a modern reporting and visualization platform
Since employees were already familiar with Excel, and retraining them on another reporting tool would require extra time and resources, Saison decided to adopt a standardized Excel format for each business department for report preparation. Next step was to identify a compatible visualization tool as well as a framework that could flexibly integrate with mission-critical systems, such as project cost, attendance management and self-service BI. The team chose Tableau – known for its ease-of use — for report visualization; and HULFT Integrate to serve as the data integration and consolidation platform between the backend systems and Tableau.
“It took us about two weeks to create the format in Excel, but for creating links we just used the adapters in HULFT Integrate. Visualization with Tableau was complete in about three days.”
Now, HULFT Integrate serves as the center of the new design, acting as the integrator and automatic report generator for all databases, such as Oracle, and other critical systems, such as SAP and SQL Servers deployed on Microsoft Azure. Reports are prepared in Excel using the standardized format, imported into HULFT Integrate, and visualized using Tableau.
Upon rollout, the team initially started small with a standalone setup and a visualization of the target reporting layout for business reports, such as pipeline information and cost management for each project, including the status of activities before orders are received. While a standardized format in Excel is currently in use, the company has future plans to implement kintone, a cloud-based business platform creation application, so staff can enter data directly into the environment.
A fully integrated information and data management platform with HULFT and Tableau in just one month
The company successfully completed the entire framework, from selection of HULFT Integrate and Tableau to actual operation, in just one month. The ability to generate subsequent sales report visualization came shortly after. With the advanced adapters and integrators available within HULFT Integrate, data extractions instantly became easier, and the platform allowed Saison to respond to changes flexibly without writing code, which dramatically reduced human errors after release.
Today, team members can quickly prepare reporting visualizations for management meetings – overall reporting workload has been reduced by 90 percent. The combination and intent of these tools are more than transactional. It enabled Saison Information Systems to break down data silos between departments, creating more efficiency and agility that not only make everyone’s job easier, but allow the company to create data-driven decisions and measurable outcomes. The new platform has made data much more accessible even without running reports, giving employees unprecedented access to data and allowing them to quickly relay raw numbers to upper management. Not only are executive and planning meetings more efficient, this new accessibility has fostered an environment of transparency between staff and management, creating a nimbler workplace that can quickly respond to data insights.