SOURCE: Information Builders

Information Builders

January 14, 2013 08:00 ET

Information Builders Gives Retailers a Holistic View of Store Operations in Real Time

Companies Worldwide Working With Business Intelligence Leader to Enhance Reporting Environment for Better Data Access

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - Jan 14, 2013) - NRF Show Floor - Today at the 102nd National Retail Federation (NRF) Conference and Expo, Information Builders, a leader in business intelligence (BI) and analytics, information integrity, and integration
solutions, announced that its technology enables retailers to obtain a comprehensive snapshot of activity at every level of the organization. By better integrating and analyzing data from a variety of sources, these companies can optimize inventory in response to demand, equip employees with more accurate information in real time, better market to customers, and ultimately fuel growth more efficiently.

With its distributed nature and multiple touch-points comprising internal sectors, external suppliers, and digital channels, the retail industry is an extremely data-heavy environment. Advanced, mobile-optimized BI tools are critical for companies to accurately capture data from these disparate sources and integrate the information into a comprehensive format that all departments can use for better decision-making. As such, retailers can analyze metrics such as sales trends, consumer sentiment, regional differences in product demand, customer purchasing behavior, and the efficacy of marketing promotions. They can then use this information to help grow the bottom line. Information Builders has numerous retail customers taking advantage of its solutions to obtain real-time insight into operations, including:

  • Ace Hardware, a retailer-owned cooperative with 4,400 hardware stores in all 50 states and more than 60 countries, has a vast amount of users in multiple departments who rely on numerous reports to do their jobs. Prior to standardizing on Information Builders' WebFOCUS BI platform, many of these departments utilized different reporting tools or quantified data in different ways leading to inconsistencies throughout the organization. Ace's BI implementation addressed this disparity, providing streamlined, user-friendly reports related to each department, including merchandising, finance, marketing and retail. As a result the company has enhanced visibility into every facet of its operations, and is using the data to make more informed decisions, optimize inventory and increase revenue. For example, Ace's WebFOCUS dashboards enable the company to gauge how various items are selling across regions and product category -- and how these trends differ by time of year -- and use this data to forecast production needs and develop better sales plans.

  • Mikesell's Potato Chip Company, the oldest potato chip company in the U.S., employing nearly 300 staff and independent distributors to sell its products throughout Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, and Illinois. To obtain better access to sales information and other critical business data, the company chose to implement WebFOCUS. In addition to updating its legacy reporting environment, Mikesell's also wanted to ensure that non-technical users could easily access and manipulate data as needed from the new dashboard, without assistance from IT. WebFOCUS' intuitive design was ideally suited for this requirement, and Mikesell's sales managers have realized a significant benefit since the implementation. Whereas before they relied on IT to pull relevant data and format it appropriately -- a process that could take days, depending on the scope of the query -- sales managers now have immediate access to this information and are able to take a much more proactive, informed approach to their accounts. Mikesell's is also working with Information Builders to provide more advanced ad hoc reporting functionality, as well as extending its BI capabilities to its independent operators.

  • Sligro Food Group Nederland B.V., a Holland-based food and beverage retailer and service organization that owns 130 full-service supermarkets and also provides goods to bars, restaurants, caterers, leisure facilities, and other businesses. The company requires all customers to use a loyalty card to make a purchase, creating a data-rich environment with details on sales and purchase histories. However, it lacked the tools to mine this information to improve insight into store sales and better market to its customers. Sligro selected Information Builders to address these challenges and unify its reporting strategy company-wide so that all divisions within the organization were measuring data in the same way, and able to access and analyze information in real time. Implementing WebFOCUS enabled Sligro to achieve this and more, replacing static, e-mail-based reports with centralized portals where users can track relevant data, benchmark against similar data sets from other stores, and identify trends and new revenue streams.

"With the wealth of existing data that can be used to inform strategies for every aspect of the organization, retailers simply can't afford to wait days for reports or rely on anything less than up-to-the-minute information," said Gerald Cohen, president and CEO of Information Builders. "Enhancing the reporting environment to obtain a holistic view of operations is essential for any company to remain competitive. For years, Information Builders has been helping retailers do exactly that, and we congratulate Associated Food Stores, Mikesell's, and Sligro on their success in using BI tools to operate more efficiently."

Visit our website for more information on Information Builders' retail technology solutions.

About Information Builders
Information Builders helps organizations transform data into business value. Our software solutions for business intelligence and analytics, integration, and data integrity empower people to make smarter decisions, strengthen customer relationships, and drive growth. Our dedication to customer success is unmatched in the industry. That's why tens of thousands of leading organizations rely on Information Builders to be their trusted partner. Founded in 1975, Information Builders is headquartered in New York, NY, with offices around the world, and remains one of the largest independent, privately held companies in the industry. Visit us at, follow us on Twitter at @infobldrs, like us on Facebook and visit our LinkedIn page.

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