Newsletter – September 2016

Andrew Mennie News, Newsletters


PrecisionPoint Custom BI Solutions

In this Olympic summer many of us will have been inspired to emulate the champions in striving to drive up performance in our businesses.  Athletes like businesses do not achieve their goals without tracking their performance against plans across many periods of time, and using that insight to make decisions to eek out even marginal gains. Businesses also need to change to sustain performance, something we have recognized through our solution design and now we are taking this further with the launch of PrecisionPoint Custom Solutions Group.

In this Newsletter we will introduce the thinking behind PrecisionPoint Custom Solutions and illustrate the possibilities through a recent case study, kindly contributed by one of our Dynamics clients. In addition, we are increasingly being asked to work with clients to deploy Microsoft’s Power BI on top of PrecisionPoint Softwarea gold medal BI solution.

Launch of PrecisionPoint Custom BI Solutions

PrecisionPoint has launched a new group within our business, ‘PrecisionPoint Custom Solutions’,  focused on provision of BI solutions for SQL server based applications over and above our existing work with Dynamics NAV, AX and CRM systems.

We see this as complementary to our core product business, the continued development and support of PrecisionPoint for Dynamics, but with several of our existing clients already enlisting our services to build custom solutions on top of other applications within their business’ we wanted to extend our offering to add value wherever possible, and to expand our portfolio beyond the Dynamics world.

Should you have any SQL server based applications within your business that you are struggling to extract data from, there is a good chance that we can help – whether you just need a data query written to extract a specific data set, or if you need a fully bespoke data warehouse created with a dashboard deployment layer, then we can provide a comprehensive solution.

All of our Custom Solutions will be backed up with the monitored support service that we use for our Dynamics product, so you can be assured that data will be available as and when your business needs it!

The link below gives a brief overview of this new service and we would be happy to discuss in more detail anything that you wish to know, or any work that you may want us to look at on your behalf.

Read more about Custom Solutions

ZyXEL selects PrecisionPoint to open up their global Dynamics NAV data to provide trusted financial and operational business intelligence

Click here to see the complete ZyXEL Case Study

We are excited to share this new case study that demonstrates how PrecisionPoint can provide extensive management reports across the organization.

ZyXEL, leading global suppliers of networking products, has been running multiple instances of Microsoft Dynamics NAV for more than 5 years across their multi-location company. However, they needed consolidated reports across regions, departments and other reports by region or division, something that can be quite challenging in Dynamics.

A decision was taken 2 years ago to implement PrecisionPoint to assist with internal reporting from NAV and to pull in some additional data from external systems, primarily for a ‘Contribution’ report that was taking them a huge amount of time to compile each month.

Interestingly PrecisionPoint was originally intended for the finance teams to consolidate the P&L data, but it is now building our commercial KPI’s and wide reaching business reports.

Jannik Haargaard – Vice President, Operations, Europe / ZyXEL.

ZyXEL now have a mechanism to pull in data from various MS SQL databases, integrating head office data office in Taiwan integrated with NAV financials data at a summarised level to allow compilation of the contribution report. This also provides them with a more granular solution to analyse the data in a stand-alone bespoke cube, fulfilling an originally identified need.

ZyXEL integrates all their commercial data not just the finance data, including sales-out from distribution and CRM data to build up a comprehensive database from which they can create extensive management reports supporting decisions across multiple countries and areas of the business.

The results have been fantastic and I have to say that PrecisionPoint is a very advanced tool with many options, but the support of PrecisionPoint with their highly skilled team was the most important factor for the success of the project

Jannik Haargaard

PrecisionPoint team is proud and delighted to work with ZyXEL and to deliver beyond what is expected of us in terms of product and customer services.

Here we have other examples of Customers’ success with PrecisionPoint software that demonstrates how customers benefit from rapid speed of deployment and are able to produce meaningful cross-functional reports and analysis across the entire organization in a matter of days.

Power BI on top of PrecisionPoint

As a Microsoft Dynamics user, you will no doubt be aware of, or already experimenting with Microsoft ‘Power BI’, a powerful dashboard authoring tool that is marketed as a self-service BI solution to allow dissemination of data throughout your business using a highly evolved graphical interface.

Sounds great, right? Who wouldn’t want to use a Microsoft analysis tool on top of Dynamics?

But, there are a few things to consider, which many people seem to have forgotten after seeing what Power BI ‘can’ look like during demonstrations – Do you know the schema of your Dynamics data, do you understand the hugely complex relationships between data tables, do you know how to link different business and functional areas within the database to provide logical sets of information for your users? The most common answer to these questions is a resounding ‘No!’

However, at PrecisionPoint, we love Power BI and our solutions really can empower the Power BI user with TRUE Self-service BI using our Dynamics specific Analysis cubes.

Where you would normally have to mine data yourself to produce even the most simplistic dashboard within the Power BI system, with PrecisionPoint, you connect to our cube and select what you need from a reconciled and sanitised logical data set, created with the end user in mind, removing all of the uncertainty and confusion related to the questions above.

For those already using the PrecisionPoint solution with other reporting tools, you will already be aware of the benefits of the Analysis cubes in regard to producing accurate and detailed reporting, but with Power BI on top of PrecisionPoint you can push data out to a much wider audience, both within your business and even outside if need be.

This combination of PrecisionPoint and Power BI can provide data that is represented in an ‘At a glance’ graphical format, with almost limitless configuration possibilities, via mobile and tablet interfaces, via web deployment on secure portal pages and with even higher levels of security than you have had before – All using the same reconciled and easy to digest data that you have come to expect from PrecisionPoint, whilst giving you what you expected from Power BI!

Related article: Jump on that Microsoft freight train or get run over – Power BI rolls on

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