BACKGROUND: Transitions Optical is the world's leading manufacturer of plastic photochromic eyeglass lenses. Among the fastest growing technology companies in the United States, Transitions Optical employs more than 900 people worldwide.

PLATFORMS: CorVu's solution runs on IBM AIX, Sun Solaris, HP-UX and Windows NT and supports Oracle, Progress, SQL Server, Sybase, Informix, Rdb, CA-Ingres, Paradox, DB2, SQLBase, OS/400 DB, dBASE IV and open database connectivity (ODBC).

PROBLEM SOLVED: Transitions Optical needed to implement a business performance management system that would allow us to capture and effectively communicate the strategic value of our enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution, QAD's MFG/PRO. Transitions Optical needed the ability to tap into our critical manufacturing, operations and accounting data and translate that information into measurable performance results related to our strategy. In order to help us gauge the overall quality of service and ensure that the company meets its high-quality expectations and customer standards, we needed the ability to effectively measure, analyze and manage the data within our company-wide data stores. All of this required real-time access to business critical information in order to make the rapid business decisions necessary to maintain our leadership within the photochromic lens market.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: CorVu's Balanced Scorecard, Business Performance Management and Business Intelligence Suite enable Transitions Optical to tightly monitor manufacturing throughput, inventory, overall quality control and customer service through a direct native interface to our ERP solution. With the CorVu solution, Transitions Optical has the ability to translate our manufacturing, operations and sales data into decision support for: isolating quality and yield issues occurring in our processes, analyzing customer service levels at any level of the product hierarchy and identifying cycle-time reduction opportunities. CorVu gives our users access to up-to-the-minute performance information via Transition Optical's information-center menu services. This custom-developed portal ­ created using CorVu's menu development tools ­ provides an intuitive gateway to the various scheduled (CorVu Scheduler) queries, reports, executive alerts and balanced scorecard metrics. The on-screen "dashboard" display provides real-time measurement of the company's key performance indicators (KPIs), such as cycle time, product yield (actual vs. plan) and customer satisfaction by customer and product.

STRENGTHS: Integrating seamlessly with leading ERP solutions such as QAD MFG/PRO, the CorVu solution is fast and easy to deploy, generating valuable business intelligence information in a matter of days. CorVu's Balanced Scorecard module offers intuitive point-and-click exploration of KPI metrics to help our managers evaluate performance data against long-term objectives, isolate problem areas and uncover hidden trends. CorVu 's approach to accessing information is easy to learn. We now have a handful of key business people who develop and publish CorVu queries. Reporting is no longer an IT activity. Transitions Optical now enjoys an enterprise performance management solution that provides unparalleled performance analysis and management capabilities.

WEAKNESSES: Developing menus is not as intuitive or easy to use as other areas of the CorVu software suite. Having to rewrite the quick reports from scratch each time a query changes is sometimes an inconvenience.

SELECTION CRITERIA: CorVu's solution was selected for its comprehensive functionality and ability to interface natively with leading ERP solutions and Transition Optical's data stores which include Progress and Oracle databases, Microsoft Access and several key Microsoft Excel spreadsheets.

DELIVERABLES: With our CorVu solution, Transitions Optical now enjoys powerful business intelligence capabilities, allowing us to understand and refine our business and manufacturing processes to sharpen our competitiveness and increase profitability. CorVu's solution delivers timely, insightful and comprehensive company performance analysis, enabling Transitions Optical to align corporate strategies with tactical operations, modify business and manufacturing initiatives and speed the realization of our long-term corporate goals.

VENDOR SUPPORT: The CorVu Professional Services staff is highly responsive, knowledgeable and experienced in tuning CorVu's solutions to maximize functionality and return on investment.

DOCUMENTATION: The supporting documentation is comprehensive and easy to follow.

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