Applix TM1REVIEWER: Bill Primerano, director of brand analysis for Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages.
BACKGROUND: Cadbury Schweppes is one of the biggest international beverage and confectionary companies in the world with a market capitalization of £10 billion. With a history stretching back more than 200 years, the company employs 55,000 people and its products are enjoyed in almost every country around the world. The Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages region comprises operations in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. During 2003, the North America operations of Dr. Pepper/Seven Up, Mott's and Snapple were brought together under a single management organization.
PLATFORMS: Microsoft Windows 2000.
PROBLEM SOLVED: Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages had numerous business issues it wanted to resolve with a single BPM platform. The starting point was to eliminate the manual process of budgeting, planning and forecasting in order to spend more time performing sophisticated financial analysis. Applix's TM1 delivered this functionality and was expanded to into a planning system with detailed visibility into product margins at multiple levels - against actual costs, rather than historical average costs. A key aspect of all this was access - including import and export capabilities - to multiple applications and systems, including GL and SAP.
PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: TM1 provides a centralized system for all aspects of performance management, including detailed budgeting, planning, reporting and analysis. Its powerful analytic engine has enabled the business to streamline its budgeting and reporting processes. Each month, the budgeting team now prepares an internal forecast within a few seconds and with a single keystroke - rather than working as many as 10 hours on the reporting. The solution has also provided the Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverage financial reporting team heightened visibility into product margins and the effects of product line enhancements and, thus, greater accuracy in predicting revenues. Because TM1's Turbo Integrator, using its ODBO interface, easily pulls data from other sources and exports it back, there is always agreement between systems.
STRENGTHS: TM1 has the same look and functionality as Microsoft Excel, enabling the company to enjoy widespread adoption with minimal additional training. The information stored and managed with TM1 is easily read. Its single source of information improves the integrity of the data. By performing "what-if" analyses with TM1 and getting immediate answers, we are able to more accurately budget and forecast specific production based on actual costs associated with any product line. Additionally, the flexibility of TM1 has enabled Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages to easily adapt to business changes such as acquisitions and mergers.
WEAKNESSES: TM1 does not have the brand visibility of products from large IT vendors. As such, with each merger and acquisition, we had to prove the reasons for not migrating to something else.
SELECTION CRITERIA: TM1 was brought into Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages through its acquisition of Snapple. Snapple's initial requirements were for easy and fast budgeting, with agility and flexibility. Applix and TM1 fit that bill, while also being an appropriate solution for a mid-sized business.
DELIVERABLES: Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages now has insight into product profitability at a detailed level and understands the business drivers for all its products, particularly for product costs for its divisions and distributors. The solution has equipped us with streamlined reporting, more margin analysis, improved forecasting and accountability by function area.
VENDOR SUPPORT: We've worked with Applix directly, as well as with MobileSoftware, an Applix Solution Partner. As with any complex system, the initial setup can be a challenge. However, Applix and its partners are well-versed on TM1, best practices in business performance management and ways to quickly and easily deploy applications.
DOCUMENTATION: The documentation met our needs from two different levels: the technical level for building the applications and the "readability" level for our financial analysts to work with the information and fully use the system.
TM1 Version 8.2.11
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