PLATFORMS: Dr. Martens AirWair USA LLC runs the DI-Atlantis Builder on a Windows NT server, and users access data models from Windows 95 clients.
BACKGROUND: The Dr. Martens brand has risen to iconic status, being the footwear of choice for rock stars and music lovers alike and has been named the world's most-recognized non-athletic footwear brand. Oregon-based Dr. Martens AirWair USA LLC is the distributor of Dr. Martens footwear and apparel in North and South America.
PROBLEM SOLVED: Due to recent growth, Dr. Martens was unable to keep up with the data reporting and analysis needs of its sales and support staff. Salespeople waited days for reports on their customers' activity. Order, invoice and stock information was simply unavailable to the people who needed it. All of the data required was collected, but there was no effective way to distribute it to salespeople, managers and executives. Dr. Martens knew that there had to be a way to get the information out, making it possible to deliver top-notch service to its customers.
PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: Dr. Martens purchased a DI-Atlantis package from Dimensional Insight. Every night, DI-Atlantis builds a series of multidimensional data models, which provide instant access to the data that once took days to get. Users can slice, dice or drill on any dimension from any tabular, graphic or report view, and they don't have to be power users to do so. Sales reps have all of their customer data at their fingertips, enabling them to better manage their business. Reports that once took several days each month to prepare are now done with the click of a mouse. Dr. Martens plans to expand use of DI-Atlantis to other departments and locations.
STRENGTHS: Ease of use. Users are brought on board very easily. After one two-hour session, they are ready to go. Dr. Martens typically adds a second session for advanced features about a month later. On the IS side, everything is automated. We provide data, divide it into dimensions and measures, and let the software do the rest. Bringing on DI-Atlantis allowed the IS department to focus more on strategic projects rather than writing reports. DI-Atlantis also offers tremendous speed and power. The product provides an answer to a user's question instantly. A variety of analysis options makes it easy for users to get whatever answers they need.
WEAKNESSES: The rapid development pace on the server side has kept new feature growth on the client side a bit slow for our taste. We expect the release of version 3.0 of the client software in December to resolve this.
SELECTION CRITERIA: With DI-Atlantis, we were able to develop a working pilot solution ourselves, using our own data and the demo software. We were up and running the day we got it. We also liked the flexibility offered by the product. As we put different types of data through DI-Atlantis, we found that its automated design made it just as easy to build order and invoice tracking models as it was to build the first sales models.
DELIVERABLES: DI-Atlantis is currently producing reports for order book management, invoice history, operational statistics and warehouse management. Our sales force has seen the greatest impact; they are able to see customer history instantly and tailor their sales and service efforts to the needs of each client.
VENDOR SUPPORT: The support from our sales rep at Dimensional Insight has been excellent. But the best part about working with DI has been the fact that we simply don't need much help to make DI-Atlantis do what we want it to do.
DOCUMENTATION: The manual is a good reference. However, the product is so intuitive that we rarely need to refer to documentation.
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