IFS EOI MAKES BUSINESSES INTELLIGENT BUSINESS OPERATIONS Early in 2015, several IT analysts announced the introduction of Operational Intelligence (OI) platforms being available on the market place to drive companies to improve and optimize their overall performance. In a sense, to become intelligent business operations. IFS EOI satisfies the OI requirements by providing business intelligence and data analytics, intelligent business process management (iBPMS), business alert management (BAM), and business process analysis (BPA), and action management. In addition, IFS EOI provides strategy management and document management using a model driven-data warehouse which makes rapid implementation and reduces TCO.
Serco chose IFS EOI particularly because it wanted more than mere business intelligence functionality. “We were looking for operational intelligence,” says Jason Adolf, Director of Business Services at Serco, “Our legacy suite of business intelligence tools provided standard reporting, but we really needed a way to allow our managers to make decisions on the data coming through the EOI tool—actionable intelligence you could say.”
Typically, in the past, actionable intelligence wasn’t available until some predefined point—a two-week, monthly or even yearly report. Now, managers get daily, and even real-time, access to data so they are making decisions during the day rather than the end of the week or even later. Adolf says that, ultimately, “the benefit is either we’re controlling costs for our customer or we’re meeting an SLA or KPI better.”
Oscar Montes, Vice President for Serco’s Federal Health business, expands on this, “The platform enables us to make the right decisions and gives us incredible insight. If you combine the two, the strategic insight and that decision-making ability, I think you get something really powerful.”
STANDARDIZED ON A SINGLE, EASY-TO-LEARN PLATFORM
Serco went from a variety of legacy business intelligence solutions to standardizing on a single platform that meets its needs and gives it the differentiation that’s part of the company’s strategy.
Adolf says, “We’ve adopted IFS EOI as our global standard for doing enterprise operational intelligence. I think there’s a huge growth potential; we’re looking at the tool as the standard bearer for doing operational intelligence across all of our programs so the need that it satisfies is not pertinent to just one part of our business or another part of our business, it’s pertinent across all of our businesses.”
The solution has also been easy to implement on numerous projects from complex to basic and also to train Serco’s staff to configure and deploy solutions on their own. Adolf again, “We went from a typical deployment, say 20 or 30 users, to a deployment with 3,500 users, but we don’t spend a lot of time on training; we give them a simple user’s guide. It doesn’t have a steep learning curve that would make it frustrating when we deploy to a large user base.” Feedback is typically very positive, and the transparency that comes out of the tool is also viewed as very positive.
The good relationship between Serco and IFS has also been beneficial. “The folks in the EOI division have been extraordinarily helpful and have stepped up for us every single time,” says Adolf. The IFS approach was consultative, sitting down with Serco and its customers to understand its business and what Serco wanted from IFS EOI. “Their experience having done hundreds of these types of engagements has brought a consultative approach that my team has picked up as we’re starting to do these deployments by ourselves,” Adolf adds.
IFS EOI HELPS SERCO SAVE CUSTOMERS MONEY—AND WIN NEW BUSINESS
IFS EOI not only saves money on training, but it’s also less expensive from a support perspective. It satisfies the legacy reporting that’s required and moves forward the operational intelligence component to help Serco stay in front of KPIs and SLAs. Adolf gives one example. “One of the things we’ve been able to do for our federal health care customer is deliver a task-by-task saving year over year because we’re looking at our operation at a level of depth that allows us to improve certain parts of the process. We know it’s not just the overall process that needs to change, but we can see where we can wring out additional efficiencies, and ultimately that’s led to cost savings for the customer.” By modeling its business processes within the tool, Serco captures data at process level. “That means,” Adolf says, “that when we’re making changes to the underlying technologies that might be feeding data—case management tools, operational tool or sensors—we can focus our spend on areas that we know need improvement, instead of throwing money at an entire process and hoping for an incremental benefit.”
IFS EOI has also helped Serco win opportunities with new customers. Adolf says, “We had a customer that we won in the last few years that specifically mentioned the idea of using tools to be transparent as a reason why they chose us. For us that’s a huge benefit.”
With IFS Applications Serco has seen a cultural shift in the way that it looks at, presents and uses data to make decisions on its programs. As Adolf says, “I think the benefit to our customers is the ability for them to see data in a way that they’ve never been able to see it before because we’re providing it to them. Going forward the tool is going to be an integral part of our value proposition to our customers, a way for us to show true differentiation but also to be more efficient, to work better and work smarter.”
Sheila Haines, data analyst for one of Serco’s biggest projects in health care, concludes, “It would be impossible to do my job without IFS EOI because we have to report out a variety of data sources in a very timely fashion every day. What I like best about EOI is that we can tailor it to the individual role of our entire workforce of over 4,000 people.”
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