's-Hertogenbosch, 13 September 2019 - How does sales perform? How much is the stock worth now? And what is the trend in turnover per region? Managers prefer to have real-time insight into the performance of the organisation. ASICS, one of the world's largest manufacturers of sports equipment and accessories, realized this with SAP's Fashion Management Solution (FMS) and SAP Analytics Cloud (SAC).
The use of SAP technology resulted, among other things, in an executive dashboard that was embraced by the top management of ASICS in Kobe, Japan. The managers can see at a glance how the company is doing. The dashboard contains all the information the management needs for a thorough decision making and the daily management of the company. The data is live and can be refreshed every minute.
The executive dashboard is the showpiece to which ASICS, together with SAP and partners delaware and Nextview, has worked step by step towards over the past few years. "First we had to provide a solid foundation, with one way of working worldwide, one reporting system, one template and clear rules for reportages," says Menno Huijgen, Global Director SAP Finance & Analytics at ASICS.
According to the director, there was a lack of uniformity. "We worked with different ERP and accounting systems, resulting in different definitions and different working methods. This led to complexity and inefficiency. If figures are delivered in different ways, it takes a lot of time to check and compare them. As soon as there are different definitions for 'net sales', for example - and certain values are sometimes excluded and sometimes not - you don't know what you're looking at."
In order to 'compare apples with apples', the Japanese sportswear manufacturer started the implementation of SAP's Fashion Management Solution (FMS) in 2016, replacing the various systems in use. "Europe was the first to do so because our Navision system was in urgent need of replacement," says Huijgen. With the experience gained in Europe, FMS was then rolled out to Australia, Hong Kong, China and the United States. Japan is scheduled for next year.
"FMS is the solid foundation we needed," says Huijgen. "We now have everything together and do not need to retrieve the figures from different systems. When I press a button to book something in Europe, our management in Japan can immediately see where the booking is going to go. This is the advantage of one central system with all the data. Thanks to a standard reporting template, reports now always look the same. And we have drawn up clear rules, for example for depreciation of the stock value."
"Then you have to make sure you have your views in order," says Bert Torn, Lead Expert at delaware. "These views extract the correct data from the underlying SAP HANA database. The next step is to visualize and present the data in the right way, in such a way that both the analyst and the management will benefit from it."
For the visualisation, ASICS examined various tools, including SAP BusinessObjects Web Intelligence, SAP Design Studio and SAP Lumira. "It was difficult for us to make a choice," says Torn. "It was precisely at that moment that SAP Analytics Cloud (SAC) came into play. That solution may not have been quite mature at the time, but it did provide exactly what we needed."
"SAC can simply consume the existing views, and connects seamlessly to FMS without us having to do strange things," explains Torn. "In addition, the data remain in FMS. We wanted a live connection with the data and that doesn't work if you have to get that data to another system first. That's why we opted for a private SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud environment, rather than a public cloud where other users could compromise performance."
According to Torn, the implementation of SAC consisted of little more than creating users and teams. "And then you just have to get on with it." Huijgen: "Initially, we will use SAC for reporting, but we will also use it to show predictive forecastings and schedules."
"In a relatively short period of time, we have created a new and innovative dashboard that is actually used by top management," says Huijgen with satisfaction. That performance earned ASICS and delaware a nomination for an SAP Quality Award. "Other regions now want to present their figures in a similar way. That's why we not only want to encourage a worldwide use of the executive dashboard, but also to translate that dashboard into 'region dashboards'. With figures for a specific region that are also reflected in the global dashboard."