Swiss Olympic is the National Olympic Committee and the umbrella organisation for Swiss sport organised under private law. Its members include 76 national sports federations and 12 partner organisations, which include around two million sports enthusiasts in around 19,500 clubs.
Swiss Olympic is a non-profit organisation with an annual turnover of around 55 million Swiss francs (based on the 2017 budget) and a diverse range of tasks. These include the sustainable promotion of popular and top-class sport in cooperation with the member associations, the anchoring of sporting values in society, support for successful participation in international competitions and the organisation and implementation of large-scale multisportional events in Switzerland.
Our solution partner Axept
Axept Business Software AG is one of the most important Swiss sales partners of ABACUS and offers a comprehensive product and service portfolio throughout the ABACUS environment. In collaboration with Axept, Informatec has developed the BI Individual standard solution iVIEW for ABACUS (or AXview).
Compensating for inefficient residue
For the crowning of the sporting achievements with a medal, numerous tasks have to be accomplished behind the scenes. The requirements are particularly high in the administrative area and very demanding due to the cooperation with different interest groups. In addition, there is the organization of Olympic missions, such as the Olympic Games in PyeongChang 2018 and various youth games. Efficient, transparent business processes are the top priority. Until recently, however, there was still a need for action in terms of efficiency in financial planning, budgeting and monitoring.
"To date, budgeting has been based on Excel spreadsheets sent back and forth between budget managers."
For Daniel Schlapbach, Head of Finance at Swiss Olympic, it would not have been possible to use the funds available at that time for optimization:"To date, budgeting has been based on Excel spreadsheets, which were sent back and forth between the budget managers. Due to the enormous complexity of our projects, the tables have already reached a volume of three full A3 sheets. Despite all due care, deviations and version conflicts were unavoidable. Logically, this involved a great deal of time for managing and controlling the data."
With clear announcement at the start
Simplification and optimization was Daniel Schlapbach's motto. Together with the Abacus/AXview partner Axept and the Jedox specialists of Informatec, the actual situation was analysed and a solution proposal worked out. The plan was to replace the Excel templates with a central data entry and storage system. Interfaces should be used to connect third party systems and web-based access should enable users to manage or retrieve current financial planning data. Personalized access rights should ensure that the information is available in the right place. In order to automate the control and monitoring of the budgeting process to a large extent, flexible workflow management was required. Of course, users had to be offered the possibility of individual evaluations of the respective projects.
"With AXview we shorten the processing times of budget and extrapolation and at the same time increase the informative value. We are thus significantly improving the timeliness and quality of financial planning."
Success through teamwork
After a thorough clarification of needs, which included the definition of the required desired evaluations, the details of future planning processes were specified in joint workshops. Teamwork with Axept Business Software and Informatec gave us a good feeling right from the start. The interaction between IT professionals and our super-users worked outstandingly well,"recalls Daniel Schlapbach. The agreed milestones were met throughout the entire project
"With Jedox, we have a tailor-made collection tool that accesses the current data in the Abacus at all times and provides us with uniform evaluations."
The effective implementation of the solution concept was based on Abacus as an existing financial software, using AXview as a functional extension for reporting and key figures and Jedox as a system for data collection. The overall solution was extensively tested by Swiss Olympic and adapted to practical needs. Following the preparations and implementation, all users were trained in the use of AXview and Jedox, so that go-live could take place after the approximately 10-month implementation phase in September 2017.
No rest on your laurels
Swiss Olympic relied on AXview for the extrapolation of the third quarter of 2017. The previous quarters were subsequently recorded by the finance department. By budget 2019 at the latest, the system will completely replace the Excel past. Swiss Olympic is already enthusiastic about the new solution, says Daniel Schlapbach:"We were able to adopt the standard of the dashboard practically unchanged. AXview is very user-friendly and offers flexible data selection. User acceptance is very high, which is also due to the needs-oriented consulting and implementation by Axept and Informatec ". Thanks to advantages such as cost centre reporting at the cost element level, multi-year reports or extended reporting options for planning figures, Swiss Olympic is ideally positioned for the upcoming major events. The fact that the data is available anytime and anywhere is particularly valuable for Swiss Olympic. For the time being, AXview wants to gather practical experience before the potential for connecting further applications, e. g. time recording and CRM, is to be exploited.
"We were able to adopt the standard of the dashboard virtually unchanged. AXview is very user-friendly and offers flexible data selection."
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.
«Transparency and efficiency are of central importance, especially in financial planning. An appropriate IT application must be able to support complex business processes in a flexible way and still remain user-friendly. We set the bar very high with our requirements for major international events of several years, but with iVIEW for ABACUS (AXview) and Jedox we have not yet reached the limits of performance in any discipline.» Daniel Schlapbach Head of Finance, Swiss Olympic