Cloud

Integrating OBIEE with Essbase for an Executive Mobile Dashboard

Client

Headquartered in Denton, TX, Sally Beauty is an international specialty retailer and distributor of professional beauty supplies with revenues of more than U.S. $2.6 billion annually. Through the Sally Beauty Supply and Beauty Systems Group businesses, the company sells and distributes to more than 4,000 stores, including approximately 200 franchised units, throughout the United States, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Puerto Rico, Mexico, France, Ireland, Spain and Germany.

Challenge

Executives were lacking a reliable and easily accessible means of keeping track of their organization’s performance in terms of what the latest sales figures are and how they compare to the forecast, plan, and prior year performances. The absence, or even delay, in getting this information consistently has an adverse impact on business decisions.

Sally Beauty had useful financial data in Essbase cubes but lacked the means of allowing executives and high level managers access to this data via mobile dashboards. Strategic Planning needed a way to present this data visually on a dashboard so it can be easily interpreted on a daily basis while levering mobile devices to access the reports.

Solution

An IT solution was needed to be able to automatically publish Essbase data and put it in the hands of the decision makers as soon as this information is available. The solution aimed at reducing the manual effort spent by business analysts to extract data from Essbase and prepare the report manually within a limited time frame on a daily basis. In addition, the IT solution aimed at making the data presentable on mobile devices in a modern way in the form of graphs and gauges that are dynamic in terms of filtering the data and navigating between different views. Oracle’s OBIEE technology is ideal to seamlessly source data from Essbase and deliver it on dashboards and mobile devices.

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As a preferred Oracle partner and with Perficient’s long history of delivering numerous OBIEE and Hyperion projects, Sally Beauty chose Perficient to help in resolving this challenge within a few weeks. Perficient was able to provide the necessary expertise in both OBIEE and Essbase that made the integration between both products seamless.

The implemented solution consisted of using Oracle Business Intelligence (OBIEE) as a front-end reporting platform that sources data from the customer’s existing Essbase system. An Essbase connection in the repository allowed importing cube structures into the OBIEE metadata layer. An interactive dashboard was then built based on a newly built subject area. OBIEE’s mobile capability extended the accessibility of this dashboard to mobile devices.

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Within 10 weeks the solution was implemented and therefore automated the whole process of processing data from Essbase cubes and publishing it to executives. The online dashboard is automatically updated as soon as the cube data is refreshed without any manual intervention. In addition, through the scheduling of OBIEE agents, users get notified via email when the dashboard is updated and therefore receive a copy of it in their emails. As a result, the Strategic Planning department was able to meet the needs of Sally Beauty executives by providing them key sales information in a timely manner and on a daily basis through a mobile dashboard.

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