“The greatest thing since sliced bread for a supply chain leader.”
That’s exactly what Shutterfly, Inc. Vice President of Supply Chain Josh Miller said about the impact Incorta’s enterprise analytics technology has had on Shutterfly’s supply chain.
Here’s how it came about.
EBS Analytics: Real-Time Insights Key to Inventory Optimization but Hard to Come By
You would think preventing stockouts and E&O inventory in today’s world would be easy: track, monitor, and understand inventory levels in real time, so you keep in stock what you need, and only what you need, and nothing else.
Until now, however, that kind of insight was hard to come by. Technology applications purposely designed to manage supply chain operations simply couldn’t quickly, accurately report on and analyze the data they generated and tracked. The data was too complex and too voluminous for the systems to handle.
Take Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS). It’s a powerhouse in the supply chain management space, helping businesses of all sizes automate process to drive supply chain cost savings. Yet customers find it difficult, if not impossible, to access and understand key inventory data stored in Oracle EBS. So they can’t effectively optimize inventory, such as minimizing stockouts and E&O expenses.
Online image publisher Shutterfly is one such Oracle EBS customer that faced monumental inventory reporting challenges. Shutterfly needed its supply chain buyers and planners to focus their time each day on the highest-priority items requiring attention, in order to optimize inventory and understand data in real time. But EBS wasn’t designed for that purpose.
Instead, Shutterfly buyers and planners spent hours each day running separate EBS reports, then combining the reports together using a homegrown reporting mix of Excel spreadsheets and Oracle tools that was inefficient and unreliable. Despite all this work, they couldn’t gain up-to-date insight into their inventory.
Shutterfly: An Aggressive Goal Prompts a New Approach
Shutterfly knew it needed to build automated exception workflows and dashboards into its procurement practice to meet a lofty goal of reducing stockouts by 50 percent by Q4 2018.
That’s why Shutterfly implemented Incorta’s no-data-warehouse analytics, deploying in only six weeks dashboards displaying EBS data that direct buyers and planners to their highest-priority activities at any given time. Now, buyers and planners access in only seconds information previously available only after hours of manual compilation.
Shutterfly’s Miller and Director of Supply Chain Management and Procurement Rachel McCutcheon effusively praise Incorta’s no-data-warehouse approach, query speeds, and ease of use.
According to McCutcheon, “Incorta is a very unique and powerful platform that can solve all of your reporting needs. … Before Incorta, buyers and planners on my team spent hours every day running reports. Now, we can get that information from Incorta in less than a second.” Additionally, “What appealed to me most about Incorta in the beginning was the ability to make changes quickly throughout the process, without having to define upfront everything we wanted. Incorta really delivered on that. We’ve gone back and added a lot of things we didn’t originally think about, and it was very quick and painless.”
Added Miller, “Incorta is bringing new value to our Oracle investment. It makes getting that value out of our Oracle investment so much easier—it just brings all that information you need to make good decisions to the forefront, right in front of your team.”
That brings me to the killer quote from the beginning of this blog. By helping Shutterfly so quickly alleviate stockouts and E&O expenses—its first but not its last analytics initiative—Incorta has become the analytics solution-of-choice at Shutterfly.
Or, as Miller puts it: “Incorta is the greatest thing since sliced bread for a supply chain leader. It empowers the organization, it streamlines workflows, and it really enables employees to get to the heart of their roles and their jobs.”
Find out why Shutterfly chose Incorta over other solutions and how Incorta helps Shutterfly:
Want to learn more about Incorta? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.