Business intelligence for intelligent businesses

Rick Stoor explains how Templa’s new data warehouse simplifies the task of producing management information for busy cleaning/FM contractors.

in today’s data-rich world, an awful Myriad reporting options lot of company directors wish they had less of the former and more of the latter. As a respected MD of a £30m cleaning company said a few years ago: “Not being able to analyse the

Few of us, thankfully, spend our day pondering the difference between data and information. Yet

performance of our company is like driving in the fog with the headlights off.”

He wanted to measure profitability of individual clients and contracts by combining data from different revenue and cost streams into one place. Back then, the only way he could do so was to download data from various different systems onto one spreadsheet, where he could then turn the data into management information – a lengthy and laborious process that compromised the company’s ability to react promptly to adverse variances or worrying trends.

Improving analytics

At Templa we have revolutionised the process of turning data into information with our new ‘Business Intelligence’ reporting suite. This is a business analytics solution that lets you visualise your data and share insights across your company. Connecting multiple data sources, it brings your data to life with live dashboards and reports.

Using Microsoft Power BI as the delivery tool, integrated seamlessly to our Microsoft technology base, we have taken on one of the trickiest challenges of data analysis: how to

store raw data in a way that makes it accessible to reporting software and therefore easy to ‘slice and dice’.

Our Business Intelligence reporting suite combines seven data sets – Transactions, Contracts, Budgets, Timesheets, Absences, Quality Audits and Service Requests – with six user-defined management levels (typically Company, Region, Area, Manager, Sector and Managing Agent) to create an almost unlimited variety of business reports.

From a financial perspective, all data is analysable by client, site, period, month, cost/revenue stream, task type or budget group. The reports are all available in comparison format, enabling senior management to run the rule over performance in different areas and time periods.

A standard set of pre-written reports will be available. However, having developed the technology in conjunction with a focus group of existing Templa clients, we are confident that users will want to invest internally in their own report writing skills, utilising a ‘copy and create’ process to build new bespoke reports for their own companies.

Examples of standard reports include contracted revenue by client, actual versus budget pay by area manager, consumable sales by area manager, gross profit percentage by contract, operatives’ absence hours by area manager and quality audit scores by site.

Data slicing and dicing

Reports are graphical and allow the user to ‘slice and dice’ data rapidly in many different ways, moving from the big picture to focused detail in just a few mouse clicks. Critical to this functionality is that the user must not have to wait for data to represent itself and we have achieved this by creating a data warehouse, a flat data structure that runs in parallel to the main transactional contract management database.

This means that the day to day transaction processing work of users in accounts or admin is not slowed down whilst analysis is taking place. The data warehouse can be refreshed on a frequency determined by our clients, giving them the possibility to analyse in real-time.

Protecting margin

As a cleaning contractor in the competitive UK market, your chances of succeeding are so much higher if you have full visibility of where you are making money and where you are losing it. TemplaCMS Business Intelligence gives you that understanding like no other software in the market. 36 | CONTRACT CLEANING

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