Founded in 1946 as a trading company for fruit and vegetables, since the 1960s Heiniger AG has been producing shearing devices and cutters at its headquarters in Herzogenbuchsee, Switzerland Heiniger AG for sheep, cattle, camelids, goats and horses as well as dogs. The family-owned company, with subsidiaries in Australia and New Zealand and qualified distribution partners in more than 50 countries worldwide, has established itself as a global leader in animal shearing devices. Every day millions of farm animals and pets are shorn and cared for with Heiniger devices.
Increased analysis requirements and a change in the ERP system from Microsoft Dynamics AX to abas ERP meant that the family-owned company needed to acquire a new business intelligence solution.
On the one hand, the sales analyses that the previous solution enabled were to be mapped to the ERP database. On the other hand, Heiniger expected flexible analysis options – also with regard to IT systems that could be integrated.
Heiniger opted for the analysis and reporting solution Qlik.
Decisive for the decision were the structured design and the high degree of user-friendliness. In addition, the Qlik flexibility in integrating data sources and carrying out analyses was impressive.
The project was implemented by Informatec. The Qlik-Elite Solution Provider and certified Qlik expertise partner supplies sophisticated SMEs and large enterprises throughout the DACH region with future-oriented business intelligence solutions and services. According to Daniel Heiniger, CEO of Heiniger AG, the cooperation with the partner went very well: "We were particularly impressed by the technological expertise and professionalism with which Informatec implemented our project. And there were excellent synergies on an interpersonal level."
Field of application and benefits
The first sales applications for productive use were available within eight weeks. Heiniger uses Qlik for differentiated sales, turnover and margin analyses according to dimensions such as product, customer and region. Geographical visualisations and analyses are also available. "This ability to display data on the world map is a huge advantage for us," says Daniel Heiniger. "You can see and understand much better and more readily how sales are running worldwide. Instead of a mountain of numbers, we can now present our supervisory board a clear, comprehensible graphic and, if necessary, delve deeper into the figures."
Another novelty for Heiniger: The sales staff can also find out about their customers before their customer visits, for example about the current sales processes.
Thanks to Qlik, the Purchasing Department had a "BI premiere" – it had previously manually transferred its analytical requirements into Excel. Employees save one to two hours time expenditure a week through automated evaluation with Qlik. "Automation also means that analytics is no longer person-dependent," adds Daniel Heiniger. "Previously, evaluations were only carried out by the limited number of employees with Excel expertise. If they were unavailable or busy with other tasks, analyses had to wait. With Qlik, every user can retrieve information when they need it."
Informatec was able to satisfy Heiniger’s desire to simplify planning: The planning tool Jedox was implemented, which seamlessly complements Qlik with powerful planning and predictive analytics. Jedox reads basic sales planning data from Qlik. Based on this, iterative planning rounds are carried out until the final plan values have been determined. These are then returned from Jedox to the ERP system.
"Planning used to be so complex that it practically became a task purely for IT," explains the CEO. "Through this structure, we have been able to restore planning to where it actually belongs. And with Jedox we are three or four times faster with our sales planning."
The use of Qlik is to be expanded in the future. For example, applications for production as well as mapping cost accounting are planned. In addition, the integration of country-specific web data is planned – such as the number of sheep.
Qlik includes very good data discovery and reporting functions for analysing past data so that companies can understand what happened and why. Jedox seamlessly expands Qlik by adding high-performance planning and predictive analytics, so that you can recognise what will happen so you can manage your company appropriately. Stop making decisions based on your gut feeling, and base them on substantiated forecasts.
„Qlik is so quick and easy to use that employees really have fun using the solution. They now use analytics much more often for their daily work than they used to!“
Daniel Heiniger, CEO of Heiniger AG