Business Intelligence is power

"Knowledge is power," says Berit Vestergaard, Middle Office Controller at SEAS-NVE. Since May 2013, SEAS-NVE have been using a new Business Intelligence tool to create a comprehensive overview of their business - and the results are obvious.

"We know the exact customer accretion, and we know how much we can expect to profit from each customer. There is no way, we could have obtained this insight before," says Berit Vestergaard.

Insight creates opportunities

The purpose of SEAS-NVE's new Business Intelligence tool is threefold:

  • Create a complete overview of performance
  • Adjust hedging
  • Correct mistakes

Every month, a number of views from the Business Intelligence tool gives a detailed overview of the number of signed contracts, their margins, how much profit they are expected to create, which sales channels perform the best etc. etc. "We can pretty much collect any data, we find relevant, and decide how we want to present it," says Berit.

The quantity of information plays a vital role in relation to business planning. This makes the BI tool vital to Market Manager, Carsten Fischer as well: "It has enabled us to make informed decisions, and given me the ability to validate my priorities."

Berit adds that the interest in data within the organization has increased considerably, since the implementation of the BI tool, and she is often met with questions about performance, contract details and sales tendencies from her colleagues.

"Controlling is easier, and the interest in data has increased. So it has made my job easier but I'm also able to work more in depth. I can do more, so obviously that creates a whole new set of tasks. But it's my job, and it's much more interesting now."

Additionally, the BI tool enables SEAS-NVE to correct their hedging and to notice potential errors in signed contracts.

"If we discover that for some reason we haven't sold the amounts that we expected, we are able to correct our hedging. It is essential to our economy that we hedge as accurately as possible. On top of that, we have added a function that sends me an e-mail, if any of our signed contracts look suspicious - based on my own criteria, of course. That way, we catch our mistakes right away," says Berit.

Midas is the source

The foundation for SEAS-NVE?s new Business Intelligence tool is Midas - a contract management and energy sales solution created by Conscius. SEAS-NVE have used Midas since September 2012, and all the data used for Business Intelligence is available through Midas.

"Before we had Midas, we hardly had any data source at all. All we had was accounting data, and that is only useful for looking back in time. Midas looks ahead to expected turnover and profit. When we implemented Midas, we were given access to sales overviews, and at that time, it was more than we had ever had before. That kick started our interest in data, and we soon decided to take full advantage of the data stored in Midas," says Berit.

Easy access

Large quantities of data with numerous combinations may sound like a handful. But according to Berit Vestergaard, navigating the new tool is not difficult - actually it is much simpler than expected.

"The request for data increased as soon as we implemented Midas - simply because it was possible to obtain. So you can say that Business Intelligence was in demand - without anyone knowing exactly what we were missing. The fact that extracting data and using the system on a daily basis has proven as simple as this is surprising and very fortunate," says Berit.

How does it work?

The BI tool is built upon the BI product of a Microsoft SQL Server. Every night, the system retrieves all contracts from Midas, stores data in a data warehouse and integrates it with data from other systems at SEAS-NVE. Upon this is an in-memory cube enabling the user to present and compare data as desired. Data may be presented through Microsoft Excel or Power View.

"The task of setting up this system was relatively straight forward," says Anders Spur Hansen, Business Intelligence developer at SEAS-NVE. "Sometimes this sort of task creates problems related to data quality, but this has not been an issue with the data collected from Midas."

Read more about om Midas

Read more about the cooperation between Conscius and SEAS-NVE

Visit SEAS-NVE's website