CATEGORY: Analytic Applications and Performance Management

REVIEWER: Scott Farr, director of performance management for Hilton Hotels Corporation.

BACKGROUND: Hilton Hotels Corporation is recognized internationally as a preeminent hospitality company. The company develops, owns, manages or franchises more than 2,000 hotels, resorts and vacation ownership properties. Its properties include many of the world's best known and most highly regarded hotel brands including Hilton, Conrad, Doubletree, Embassy Suites Hotels, Hampton Inn, Hampton Inn & Suites, Hilton Garden Inn, Hilton Grand Vacations Company and Homewood Suites by Hilton.

PLATFORMS: Dell Server running two Intel Xeon 2GHz processors, 2GB of memory, 72GB of SCSI hard drive space with RAID, running on a Windows 2000 Server platform.

PROBLEM SOLVED: Having adopted the balanced scorecard as our performance management methodology of choice, we began to use software to develop our new system. Initially, our organization relied on static Excel reports to display the balanced scorecard results to senior managers. This proved to be an inefficient manual reporting process. We decided we need a robust, automated enterprise performance management solution; we chose the CorVu CorStrategy application. Hilton has deployed CorStrategy to deliver timely online, personalized and actionable business intelligence to hotel management, field-based area vice-presidents and executives at its corporate offices. By combining Hilton's balanced scorecard expertise with sophisticated performance management software from CorVu, Hilton demonstrated its dedication to increasing stakeholder value and has helped Hilton achieve the highest operating profit margins versus its competitors. Additionally, Hilton's internal customer loyalty and brand measures have steadily improved in the years since adopting a balanced scorecard approach.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: CorStrategy offers integrated business intelligence, flexible scoring at all scorecard levels, interactive cause-and-effect diagrams, strategy modeling, integrated initiative management and collaborative communication. Everything is functioning as promised.

STRENGTHS: Whereas most performance management vendors offer limited metrics views or static reporting, CorStrategy offers a 100-percent Web-based enterprise performance management solution, with integrated strategy management, scorecard, budgeting and business intelligence functionality. With a low-risk entry point, extensible growth path and RapidROI program, we were able to get our project up and running quickly and eventually deployed globally. We currently have more than 400 scorecards and 3,000 users at more than 300 locations.

WEAKNESSES: Product documentation is currently being improved; however, we've found that documentation updates lag behind product upgrades.

SELECTION CRITERIA: Hilton Hotels required a powerful enterprise performance management solution with robust balanced scorecard functionality. CorStrategy was the only product with key benefits outlined in the Product Functionality section of this review. Because CorStrategy is embedded within the Hilton Enterprise Performance Management Web portal, we definitely required a 100 percent Web-based solution. Our performance management architecture required a highly flexible and customizable solution. We monitor regional and enterprise scorecards that roll up data from individual hotel scorecards. We are able to determine performance-based employee compensation through CorStrategy. Also, CorVu was one of the first vendors to be certified by the Balanced Scorecard Collaborative, which weighed heavily on our decision.

DELIVERABLES: With direct connection to many data sources, CorVu automatically pulls performance management data from a number of systems on a scheduled basis. CorStrategy delivers performance reports, scorecard presentations and online performance portfolios to senior management, providing them the information they need to make better business decisions. Our balanced scorecards are dynamic, offering the ability to drill into underlying analyses and reports for further detail. Also, scorecard owners are kept abreast of measures that fall below set standards.

VENDOR SUPPORT: CorVu was very helpful during the implementation. The consulting staff was very knowledgeable. We received quick initial responses from tech support. CorVu offers personal support and the ability to talk to people who are in charge of development of a specific module.

DOCUMENTATION: As mentioned, the documentation is currently lagging a bit behind technology innovations; however, it does offer a sufficient guide to run the product. CorStrategy is very easy to use, and most users do not rely on documentation because the product is so intuitive.

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