Bunn-O-Matic Brews Up Intuitive BI with WebFOCUS
November 3, 2009 Alex Woodie
Bunn-O-Matic knows a lot about brewing coffee. The Springfield, Illinois, company has been in the coffee maker manufacturing business for more than 50 years, with both commercial and consumer lines. But when it came to building, running, and distributing reports from business applications, Bunn-O-Matic’s employees would typically find an IT expert to help them. That has changed as the result of a recent implementation of software from Information Builders.
Because Bunn-O-Matic relies on an AS/400-based ERP system and a SQL Server-based system to run its service center, it has experienced difficulty in getting the two systems to talk to each other and generate the needed reports.
The company previously relied upon a mix of several products, including IBM-Cognos ReportNet, but it still ran into difficulties with the two systems. But now that it’s moved to IBI’s WebFOCUS suite, it has found a way to make it work.
The company is using a range of IBI products to move the data and ensure it’s in the right format for analysis. At the front end, Bunn-O-Matic uses IBI’s DataMigrator software to pull data from the AS/400 and SQL Server platforms. It’s also using a DB2/400 data adapter from IBI’s subsidiary, iWay Software to get at DB2/400 data.
Once all the data is in, Bunn-O-Matic users work within a WebFOCUS component called Active Reports. This is really where ease-of-use dividends are paid, IBI says. Because Active Reports combines data and interactive capabilities in a single file, it’s very easy for users to do their own sorting, filtering, configuring, and charting. The company also uses ReportCaster to distribute reports to customers and internal users on a scheduled basis.
The project has empowered users to do develop their own reports and freed Bunn-O-Matic’s IT professionals to spend time on more important activities. “With WebFOCUS, Bunn-O-Matic has put enhanced reporting capabilities into the hands of the people who need it most without straining their IT department beyond its means,” said Gerald Cohen, president and CEO of Information Builders.