Global engineering company Sandvik SA recently partnered with BiPS for the successful migration of its Business Intelligence (BI) environment from IBM Cognos 7 to IBM Cognos 8 Business Intelligence.
The migration, which impacted the organisation's offices throughout South Africa as well its branches in Africa, now sees Sandvik's business benefiting from improved Cognos 8 support, which in turn has enhanced its equipment analysis and ultimately service-delivery to its South African mining clients.
However, before the successful migration, Sandvik had to overcome a number performance issues and ultimately service delivery challenges due to the lack of a standardised BI solution.
The company had been running Cognos 7 on the majority of its systems and Cognos 8 disparately in certain departments. Unfortunately, this resulted in standardisation, accessibility and performance issues and the organisation could not fully leverage the advantages of Cognos.
As one of the country's foremost mining industry equipment suppliers and maintenance service providers, Sandvik uses its BI environment for reliability analysis, therefore, assessing how equipment is performing and what changes need to be made.
The performance of the company's BI environment, therefore, directly impacted its service-delivery.
Sandvik took the decision to migrate the entire company and African branches to Cognos 8 in order to standardise on a BI solution and overcome the challenges that multiple BI solutions created. It was also logical step to partner with its current BI service provider, BiPS with which the company had a long-standing and strong relationship.
"We believed our BI partner BiPS offered the necessary skills, knowledge and expertise to successfully migrate our environment to Cognos 8 Business Intelligence. They were familiar with our environment, understood it and from the start was prepared for the potential challenges they might face in updating our BI software infrastructure," comments Jayesh Vanmali, project manager focusing on the management of IT projects for Sandvik SA.
Adds Corneil Lubbe, director at BiPS: "Our in-depth experience and expertise with BI (IBM Cognos in particular) positioned us well for this project and as we have a long-term relationship with Sandvik, we understood their business and IT environment which provided us with insight as to how the migration should be handled."
Sandvik now benefits from a BI environment that is standardised, running only one version of IBM Cognos' BI solution offering. "We can now focus on one system; it is undoubtedly a more stable solution and can, for example, make changes to and enhance our security which was more of a challenge when we were running both Cognos 7 and 8.
Additionally, the company can now fully realise the benefits of IBM Cognos 8. For example, the solution delivers a complete range of BI capabilities on a single service-oriented architecture (SOA). IBM Cognos 8 also incorporates key BI components such as reporting, analysis, scorecarding, dashboards and extended BI through mobile accessibility.
Following the migration, BiPS has provided training, as and when required, to Sandvik users on Cognos 8, further simplifying the migration and ensuring the organisation is making use of all its enhanced features. Additionally, the company is providing ongoing support to Sandvik as part of its service level agreement.