BACKGROUND: Dollar Rent A Car, a subsidiary of Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc., has approximately 370 worldwide locations in 26 countries, with a significant presence in Australia, Canada, the Caribbean and Latin America including 230 locations in the United States. The company and its licensees have locations at most major airports across the nation and a fleet of more than 75,000 vehicles. Through its alliance with Europcar, Dollar offers service in 96 additional countries covering Europe, the Middle East, India and Africa.
PLATFORMS: Information Advantage's MyEureka! for enterprise reporting is being deployed on a Windows NT server accessible by Microsoft Internet Explorer browsers.
PROBLEM SOLVED: To improve its customer service and overall profitability, Dollar's sales and marketing professionals needed a dynamic business intelligence application. The solution needed to better monitor and enhance Dollar's vehicle utilization and assess its customers' rental habits by region. With rental offices all over the United States, we needed an architecture that would allow Dollar to leverage server-based processing for performance, storage and distribution. MyEureka!'s proven, server-based architecture is essential to its environment. Information Advantage's successes in deploying large data warehousing and enterprise reporting solutions gave Dollar the confidence that MyEureka! would scale to support its large user community and grow with its application as Dollar's business intelligence needs advance.
PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: Dollar's enterprise reporting application needed to reach over 300 sales and marketing professionals nationwide. To do this efficiently, it required a true Web desktop. MyEureka!'s business intelligence portal applies the same thin-client visualization, navigation, agent, delivery and search principles popularized by consumer Internet portals, such as Yahoo!, to secure corporate business intelligence information.
STRENGTHS: MyEureka! expands the use of business intelligence by providing all knowledge workers with an easily accessible Web portal to all corporate data and tools. Information Advantage has adopted the proven information accessibility and delivery concepts popularized by Internet portals into its MyEureka! product. MyEureka! allows Dollar's users to access and analyze information from multiple business intelligence sources and scales to support large user databases. In addition, MyEureka! makes the securing of reports an easy process for Dollar. It allows us to restrict the users' view of the data to include only what is pertinent to their role and region. MyEureka! is the cornerstone for managing our business intelligence information on Dollar's corporate intranet.
WEAKNESSES: As Dollar was a beta customer of the MyEureka! business intelligence portal, the product's first release offered limited database and platform support. Information Advantage plans to rapidly port MyEureka! to support a broader variety of relational databases and platforms.
SELECTION CRITERIA: After a thorough market assessment of the major vendors during our evaluation phase, Dollar always came back two key criteria the ease of report development and mature server-based architecture. Since Dollar's IT staff are not the report designers, they required a tool with a visual development environment not one designed only for programmers. MyEureka! provided the graphical user interface to make it easy for Dollar's users to access and analyze information and to create presentation-quality reports using drag-and-drop functionality. Dollar also felt that Information Advantage was unique in giving them the scalability needed for their large user community as well as an application that would grow with the company. Other products have some of these features, but no other product combines visual development with an architecture for the future.
DELIVERABLES: Dollar is deploying the MyEureka! business intelligence portal with the Query Engine, Report Engine and Content Server modules.
VENDOR SUPPORT: Dollar was impressed by Information Advantage's effort to partner with Dollar for the long term and help us plan for future projects. From its initial contact, Dollar could see that Information Advantage was very serious about working with us on both a tactical and strategic basis.
DOCUMENTATION: Information Advantage provides documentation, on-line help, hotline support and consulting services for implementation planning, execution and growth of the MyEureka! solution.
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